Home > About Redundancy > Am I Eligible for Voluntary Redundancy?

Am I Eligible for Voluntary Redundancy?

By: Emma Eilbeck BA (hons) - Updated: 8 Oct 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Redundancy Employer Voluntary

Voluntary redundancies occur when a company is facing financial difficulty or has too many staff for the job that needs doing.

Employers often prefer to offer voluntary redundancy rather than compulsory because it is better for work morale if employees feel like they are not being made to take redundancy, but are being given the option.

Voluntary redundancy can be expensive for employees though, so even though they have offered it to everyone they might still decide to pick and choose who they allow to take it.

Your answers to the below questions should give you a good idea as to whether your employer is likely to choose you for redundancy.

1) Has Your Company Offered Voluntary Redundancy?

  • A) Yes, we have been asked to put our names forward
  • B) There are to be redundancies but voluntary redundancies have yet to be mentioned
  • C) No, but I know the company is in financial difficulty

2) Are You a Long-term Employee?

  • A) Yes, I have been at the company for over ten years
  • B) I have worked there for around five years
  • C) No, I am new

3) How Old Are You?

  • A) Over sixty
  • B) Around 50
  • C) Under 40

4) How Many Redundancies Need to be Made?

  • A) Around 30 -40% of workforce
  • B) Around 10-20% of workforce
  • C) Under 10% of workforce

5) How Specialist is Your Role?

  • A) There are a number of people that do my job
  • B) A few of us do the same job
  • C) I am the only one that does my job

Your Answers

Mostly A –You Stand a Good Chance

On paper you sound like you are the ideal candidate for voluntary redundancy. If you have been with the company a long time it will cost your employer more to offer you voluntary redundancy because they will have to give you a large payout. They may however prefer to offer you voluntary redundancy if you are thinking about winding down or retiring.

Offering voluntary redundancy to those that are looking to retire boosts the morale of the other workers and makes them feel more secure about their own role. If there is more than one person who can do your job you will be less of a necessity to your employer as they can rely on one of your colleagues to fill your role.

If they are looking to offload around 30-40% of the workforce through voluntary redundancy this will increase your chances of your application being accepted.

Mostly B - You Should Apply

You sound like you could be eligible for voluntary redundancy if this is what your company has planned. Not all employers will offer voluntary redundancy, even if there are redundancies on the cards. It is not a good idea to put yourself forward for voluntary redundancy until this has been officially been requested for by your employer.

If there are a couple of you that do the same job it will depend on how many people apply for voluntary redundancy, it may be that your employer has to choose between you all.

In this instance if the company wants to show employee loyalty and create a good feeling amongst the remaining workforce they will normally opt for the older candidates and those that have been with the company the longest. If you are not planning on retiring though you should be careful if you volunteer for redundancy late in life, as your chances of finding employment elsewhere could be reduced.

Mostly C – Your Chances Are Slim

Unfortunately it sounds like you are unlikely to be offered voluntary redundancy. Your colleagues are likely to be offered voluntary redundancy before you because they will have been there longer. If you are the only one that does your job your employer is likely to want to keep you. If you are new to the company your employer will be unlikely to offer you a large payout because you have not been with the company for a long time. Larger corporate companies will not always follow these guidelines and if they are keen to shed a lot of staff they will choose those where their roles double up.

It will ultimately be your employer that decides who they are willing to offer voluntary redundancy to. If your job is one of a kind it is less likely they will want to part with your skills, unless off course they are not needed anymore. If you apply for voluntary redundancy and are unsuccessful it may lead to an uncomfortable working atmosphere as they know you want to leave.

But for many voluntary redundancy offers a get out of jail free card and a hefty lump sum, for those who can find employment elsewhere.

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[Add a Comment]
Blossom- Your Question:
I am off work sick have been offered voluntary redundancy and want it will I get it

Our Response:
Your employer will select the people to be made redundant from everyone who volunteered. It’s up to your employer if they select you for redundancy. Just because you volunteered to be made redundant doesn’t mean you will be, please see CAB link here.
RedundancyExpert - 9-Oct-17 @ 12:09 PM
I am off work sick have been offered voluntary redundancy and want it will I get it
Blossom - 8-Oct-17 @ 2:47 PM
I have worked for local government for 14 years, in April I had surgery on my hand that I am still recovering from.Whilst I have been off, there has been a consultation period due to changes in hours/contracts.I have not been part of this and was not aware of it until a passing comment by a colleague.Reduced wages have already started and they say I cannot apply for the voluntary redundancy package as the date has gone, how could I apply when I didn't know?I haven't received a new contract or a new job description.Can I still apply for the redundancy due to not been consulted or offered it when everyone else was?
Sharon - 25-Aug-17 @ 5:33 PM
I work for a nhs services in maintanance and our managment is having a reshuffle and part of this is that the technicians posts we have are being increased from 2 post to 4 postand the 2 technicians inplace have got to reapply for there jobs. At the moment they are band 5+rrp but the new positions are just a band 5 can they make staff reapply for there job if thedescription are the same as they are not making people redundent but our increasing the number of posts? Can somebody please help
Clive - 7-Aug-17 @ 11:45 AM
@Dave - Even all those who have applied for VR might not be accepted. It's a tricky one as you could ask, but you may be refused and then your employer will know you have considered wanting to leave the company. If you're ok with your employer wanting to know that - then go for it.
GrahamR - 18-May-17 @ 10:30 AM
Hi my company has offered VR however i was excluded from this as i received an above standard rating for the previous performance year. Those who were offered the VR have received there quotes. Is it possible to put myself inscope for VR even though i was considered as out of scope?
Dave - 17-May-17 @ 9:45 AM
@Chrissie - you can only apply for redundancy a) if it's offered and b) if your job no longer exists. As your job stll exists, you can either accept or reject the new terms. Plus, only employees have redundancy rights. Non-employees, such as contractors and agency staff don't.
Rich - 2-May-17 @ 10:53 AM
I work in the voluntary sector and the projects are funded usually from local government. Each contract is approx 2 yrs and the current one ends this month. The new contract that the organisation bid for has some significant changes, namely weekend working hours etc - they want us to work on a rota system to be on call at weekends, ( at home with a phone to respond to call out) without an increase in salary and lieu time would only be given if a call out was requested. Am I in a position to request redundancy as the role has changed quite significantly from the previous contract?
Chrisssie - 1-May-17 @ 1:38 PM
Htanna - Your Question:
The company I work for was offering VR in October 2016 and although I asked for a VR quote I was not in a position to accept it.Now the closing date for submission has passed, I've typically just received a job offer.Even though all of my colleagues who took the most recent VR haven't left yet, is there nothing I can do?

Our Response:
I'm afraid there is nothing you can do with regards to this - it's purely a case of bad timing.
RedundancyExpert - 3-Apr-17 @ 12:51 PM
The company I work for was offering VR in October 2016 and although I asked for a VR quote I was notin a position to accept it. Now the closing date for submission has passed, I've typically just received a job offer. Even though all of my colleagues who took the most recent VR haven'tleft yet, is there nothing I can do?
Htanna - 2-Apr-17 @ 3:57 PM
chrissie48 - Your Question:
I am 67 years, work for local government and took flexible retirement 18 months ago. I still work 3 days per week and claim my pension. Due to funding problems, staff have now been asked for volunteers for voluntary redundancy. Can I legally apply?

Our Response:
If you have been asked to apply, then yes. However, the terms of your redundancy will be affected by your reduction in hours and whether a new contract was drawn up or not. If you have been asked to apply, you may wish to question what terms you would qualify for.
RedundancyExpert - 15-Mar-17 @ 11:41 AM
I am 67 years, work for local government and took flexible retirement 18 months ago. I still work 3 days per week and claim my pension. Due to funding problems, staff have now been asked for volunteers for voluntary redundancy. Can I legally apply?
chrissie48 - 14-Mar-17 @ 2:25 PM
hi wondering if I can get some advice. I have been employed for over 5 years with my last working day being 17.01.17 due to lack of contracts within our industry. Although nothing is stated on my statement of main terms of employment, my employer has informed me I am on a '0 hour' contract. I am entitled to 28 holidays including bank holidays per annum and no holidays will be granted whilst no work is on the horizon? I get paid on a weekly basis, three weeks in arrears and have noticed since my last paid week no national insurance contributions have been paid? with this in mind and an email being sent out by my area manager seeking 'to encourage you to find secondary employment until such time we have a work placement for you'. Currently contemplating voluntary redundancy? would this be the best option for myself?
johncobra - 28-Feb-17 @ 10:40 PM
My company is under goinga resturcture and we had a meeting on the 16th January andwe were told thatVR would be taken on the 3rd of Febuary i feel that this was such a short time period i could not make such a life changing decision in such a short time frame so on the 6th Feburary told them i was staying 15 days on i feel that i made the wrong choice are there any grounds in which i can now take VR.
Dawn - 19-Feb-17 @ 9:41 PM
Hi, last year I applied for VR and was told my request was denied. Today, compulsory redundancies were announced, Yet again I was overlooked/not chosen, however, some people who had VR denied last year were approached and got given VR this time around as well as those who got told they were getting compulsary redundancy. Is there anything I can do to object to the way I have been overlooked again.
Neets - 8-Feb-17 @ 5:13 PM
Viv - Your Question:
Hi I have worked for the council for over 20 years and in April last year they announced they were making changes within the structure of the council and making redundancies! I am in my sixties and did not want to work in the New structure and therefore put myself forward for voluntary redundancy along with many others! In Sept 24 people out of 30 got their voluntary redundancy but I did not! I have been off sick since with work related stress as I do not feel I can do the new role and I feel like I have been discriminated against in the fact that I did not get my redundancy because of my age as they knew I would be retiring soon and would most probably leave with all the changes! Is there a certain criteria they should have adhered too or can they pick and choose as they like! Is it worth putting a grievance in against them?

Our Response:
If you feel you have been unfairly treated then you would have to prove that age discrimination was taking place. If cost-cutting is the reason for redundancy, then your employer may be able to justify their reasons within that specific remit. You would really have to go back through the consultancy period to see if there is anywhere the council has been less than transparent. However, I suspect there will be clauses in your consultation paperwork that adequately justify the reasons why you were refused. If you are still in doubt - ACAS or your union will help you here.
RedundancyExpert - 31-Jan-17 @ 2:36 PM
Hi I have worked for the council for over 20 years and in April last year they announced they were making changes within the structure of the council and making redundancies! I am in my sixties and did not want to work in the New structure and therefore put myself forward for voluntary redundancy along with many others! In Sept 24 people out of 30 got their voluntary redundancy but I did not! I have been off sick since with work related stress as I do not feel I can do the new role and I feel like I have been discriminated against in the fact that I did not get my redundancy because of my age as they knew I would be retiring soon and would most probably leave with all the changes! Is there a certain criteria they should have adhered too or can they pick and choose as they like! Is it worth putting a grievance in against them?
Viv - 31-Jan-17 @ 9:41 AM
I have been offered voluntary redundancy including 12 weeks pay in lieu of notice. I work for the local authority. How soon can I apply for employment doing a different role within the local authority or other local authorities. Do I have to wait until after the 12 weeks are up.
Angi12350 - 16-Jan-17 @ 7:34 PM
Hi, I have worked for my current company for 3/4 years as a project manager, the company have rebranded and the line of work I do is no longer advertised. I'm currently sat with no project to manage, the companies I did work for have gone elsewhere and I'm losing the will to live... what's the odds of me getting redundancy? They may have driving positions but it's not a job I have done before and I have 15 points on my license so it's not a wise move..
Jamie - 9-Jan-17 @ 4:10 PM
@Dormouse - yes, if that is the company's new policy they can make these changes. M.
MThomas - 4-Jan-17 @ 10:52 AM
My work has said that they will no longer offer voluntary redundancy anymore and it will be a last in first out policy can they do this??
Dormouse - 3-Jan-17 @ 10:37 AM
Frannie - Your Question:
I have been working with my present company for over 14 years in an admin position. In February they are relocating to another premises however my job is no longer available as it stands (I have a 32.5hr Office Administrator contract).The company has offered me another admin position in another home but it will involve me catching two buses to get there as I don't drive and will cost me £79.10p each month that will impact on my finances. It will also add an hour each end of the day due to travelling.I took my present job due to the close proximity to my house, it literally takes 3 minutes for me to get here.Where to I stand if I turn down the offer of the new position? Will my reasons be considered as legitimate and will I be entitled to redundancy?I am 61 years old and in an ideal world I should have been retired by now but I have to work until I am 66 before getting a pension now.I would be grateful for any advice please.Thank you

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. When an employer moves, employees with a mobility clause in their contract have to move unless they can prove the request is unreasonable, please see gov.uk link here for more information regarding your rights.
RedundancyExpert - 30-Nov-16 @ 2:35 PM
I have been working with my present company for over 14 years in an admin position.In February they are relocating to another premises however my job is no longer available as it stands (I have a 32.5hr Office Administrator contract). The company has offered me another admin position in another home but it will involve me catching two buses to get there as I don't drive and will cost me £79.10p each month that will impact on my finances. It will also add an hour each end of the day due to travelling. I took my present job due to the close proximity to my house, it literally takes 3 minutes for me to get here. Where to I stand if I turn down the offer of the new position?Will my reasons be considered as legitimate and will I be entitled to redundancy? I am 61 years old and in an ideal world I should have been retired by now but I have to work until I am 66 before getting a pension now. I would be grateful for any advice please. Thank you
Frannie - 30-Nov-16 @ 9:14 AM
Shirley - Your Question:
I want voluntary redundancy. But just found out my job is safe but you can still put your name forward I have been with the company for 16 years.I just want to find my self a part time job. I work 12 hrs a day 4 days in a row where do I stand

Our Response:
If your job is safe, then it is unlikely your company will wish to pay out on a redundancy package where there is no need. Unless your company is asking for voluntary redundancy, then you should not put yourself forward.
RedundancyExpert - 21-Oct-16 @ 10:12 AM
I want voluntary redundancy. But just found out my job is safe but you can still put your name forward I have been with the company for 16 years. I just want to find my self a part time job. I work 12 hrs a day 4 days in a row where do I stand
Shirley - 20-Oct-16 @ 8:25 AM
holmsey - Your Question:
I have been in my current position for 16 years and 2 months until the end of July working as a legal secretary in the criminal department. I am 65 years oldMy then boss changed firms and I was not able to accompany him although he suggested it, due to travel difficulties.My firm has now employed an agent to carry out the work that my former boss was doing and she is now doing all the work (including letter writing, message taking etc) that I previously did.I have been told that if I moved offices (again which I am not prepared to do because of distances and times involved then I could carry on working for the agent in much the same way as I did before.I believe my job has disappeared. I have been working this week in another department (which is fully staffed) which I know nothing about and which I am not enjoying, in fact it is making me feel ill.I have suggested to my practice manager that I take voluntary redundancy but the suggestion was not treated well, mainly because (I believe) of the cost.Can you tell me where I stand? I earn £350.77 top line weekly.

Our Response:
Much depends upon your contract. I think in this case you would have to give ACAS a call in order to speak to someone directly.
RedundancyExpert - 7-Oct-16 @ 11:39 AM
I have been in my current position for 16 years and 2 months until the end of July working as a legal secretary in the criminal department.I am 65 years old My then boss changed firms and I was not able to accompany him although he suggested it, due to travel difficulties. My firm has now employed an agent to carry out the work that my former boss was doing and she is now doing all the work (including letter writing, message taking etc) that I previously did. I have been told that if I moved offices (again which I am not prepared to do because of distances and times involved then I could carry on working for the agent in much the same way as I did before. I believe my job has disappeared.I have been working this week in another department (which is fully staffed) which I know nothing about and which I am not enjoying, in fact it is making me feel ill. I have suggested to my practice manager that I take voluntary redundancy but the suggestion was not treated well, mainly because (I believe) of the cost. Can you tell me where I stand?I earn £350.77 top line weekly.
holmsey - 6-Oct-16 @ 2:35 PM
Vickers- Your Question:
My contracted job roll is being made redundant. 3 on department 2 have been told at risk of redundancy. I am being told I'm not at risk as I work 50% on another department. Not thrpugh choice usally ocertime workers do my hob amd I get moved somewhwre else. Surely my contract and paperwork shouldnt be for my contracted department if im not working all my shifts on it. Yet I'm coded as my contracted department on my wage slips etc. I have been put into a 30 day consultation period to change my hours or move stores (yet I'm not at risk ). Am I entitled to be offered redundancy I have longer service than the other 2 employees affected.

Our Response:
Due to the complexity of your situation, you would need to speak to ACAS regarding this matter.
RedundancyExpert - 15-Sep-16 @ 11:19 AM
My contracted job roll is being made redundant.3 on department 2 have been told at riskof redundancy. I am being told I'm not at risk as I work 50% on another department. Not thrpugh choice usally ocertime workers do my hob amd i get moved somewhwre else. Surely my contract and paperwork shouldnt be for my contracted department if im not working all my shifts on it. Yet I'm coded as my contracted department on my wage slips etc.I have been put into a 30 day consultation period to change my hours or move stores (yet I'm not at risk ) . Am I entitled to be offered redundancy I have longer service than the other 2 employees affected.
Vickers - 14-Sep-16 @ 2:49 PM
My job is a heavy manual one which I am 59 and have been in over 5 years. I'm finding it more difficult to manage and need to have 2 knee replacements. This would mean months off work not being sure whether the company would allow me to go back. Would I be eligible for voluntary redundancy.
Bill - 29-Mar-16 @ 2:06 PM
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