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AS, Barrister
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 479
Experience:  Experience in Family, Employment, Commercial, Immigration & Property Law
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I work for RBS and they are soon to seek voluntary redundancies.

Resolved Question:

I work for RBS and they are soon to seek voluntary redundancies. It is rumoured that if you have been off sick for a length of time you are not eligible for redundancy. My HR (human resources) say that there is no such policy however I do know someone who was refused redundancy as he had been off sick for 6 weeks several years ago. I have been off sick with depression for March and April. I would take redundancy but am worried I would be discriminated against and am considering getting my GP to sign me back to work before I'm ready to ensure I can take redundancy. Is it legal to exclude someone who is off sick when seeking redundancy volunteers or could this be seen as discrimination? I have been off with depression due to outside work issues and because of work issues over the last year.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  AS replied 7 years ago.

Sorry to hear that.

No, there is no way that your employer can withold your statutory redundancy pay even if you were off work sick for any length of time.

If they do so, you can use S-13 of the Employment Rights Act to claim that your rightful wages/entitlements has been unlawfully deducted by your employer.

You can make a claim against the employer for unlawful deduction of wages in the Employment Tribunal within 3 months. Please visit the link below for detailed guidance on making a claim:

Hope this helps.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.



Thanks for the answer. I obviously did not explain properly. It is not the pay which is being withheld (not got that far yet!). The Bank, before the end of May, say that they are going to ask staff to volunteer for redundancy. The Bank will then decide who is going to go and who they want to keep. They need 9000 volunteers. My issue is that having been off sick the Bank may not even ask me if I want to volunteer as previously they excluded any long term sick people for volunteering thereby denying them the chance to take redundancy. Can the Bank exclude a specific group of staff and deny them the opportunity to take redundancy? I would not have expected sickness to be suitable criteria for excluding staff from this kind of exercise.




Expert:  AS replied 7 years ago.

Thanks for the clarification.

Yes, I'm afraid the bank can exclude anyone from taking voluntary redundancy as this is at their sole discretion and they can use any criteria they want to, but if they exclude a specific group of staff gender on the basis of their marital status, gender reassignment, pregnancy, sexual orientation, disability, race, colour, ethnic background, nationality, religion or belief and age, then only this would be classed as discrimination and then you can make a claim for discrimination against your employer in an employment tribunal.

Hope this helps.

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