Here at BAPN, we’ve seen a huge increase in the number of member queries relating to either redundancy or the fear of it.
A direct consequence of COVID-19 is that job losses are on the increase as employers feel the financial effects of the pandemic - where they’ve either lost their own jobs or, now they’re going to be working from home long-term, they’ve re-evaluated their childcare needs.
Many nannies are telling us that nothing has been said but they’re feeling very nervous and most who have been in touch simply wanted to talk through the “what ifs”. Therefore, we’ve written this short blog which you may find useful.
Please note: this blog is written for information only. If you have any concerns regarding a potential redundancy situation, you MUST seek advice from either your membership Association (BAPN, Pacey, Voice) or, if you are not a member of an Association qualified and insured to advise, you can get advice from Acas www.acas.org.uk
If you are being made redundant or are worried about the threat of redundancy, please do not look for answers from social media groups. You will need qualified advice if you are to avoid jeopardising any claim you may legitimately have for unfair dismissal. A nanny who was once made redundant or someone who has “googled it” is NOT an expert!
So, what is redundancy? When an employer determines they no longer need a particular job doing they can make that job redundant and therefore the person carrying out that job is made redundant too.
It is important to note, a redundancy is only a genuine redundancy when the role is no longer required. So, should a nanny be made redundant and then shortly afterwards the employer employs a new nanny, the original nanny could have a claim for unfair dismissal because their role has not disappeared. Should this happen to you, you will need to seek advice quickly. In unfair dismissal claims, you must make the claim to a tribunal within 3 months of being dismissed. Also, you must have worked for your employer for a minimum period before you qualify for the right to claim unfair dismissal at a tribunal. If you are classed as an employee and started your job:
on or after 6 April 2012 - the qualifying period is normally 2 years
before 6 April 2012 - the qualifying period is normally 1 year
If you have a genuine claim and get your timing wrong you will lose the right to claim and potentially winning a compensatory award which can run into thousands of pounds.
Some nannies have said to us they understood they could not be made redundant if they have a written contract of employment or, if they are the only employee in the household – neither is correct. Anyone can be made redundant but, the reason(s) for redundancy must be fair.
Among the reasons that are not considered fair are:
Age or gender
You have been a whistle-blower
Membership of a trade union
You have asked for holiday or maternity leave
Another misconception is where nannies who are currently furloughed believe they cannot be made redundant. They can but, as explained above, redundancy must be fair in all cases.
Statutory Redundancy Notice
Should you be unlucky enough to be made redundant, your employer is required to serve you notice. The amount of notice you are given will depend on how long you have been employed by the family:
At least one week's notice if you have been employed between one month and two years
One week's notice for each year if employed between two and 12 years
12 weeks' notice if employed for 12 years or more
If you have worked continuously for your employer for two years or more, you have the legal right to redundancy pay. There is a statutory minimum. The amount is calculated from your age, length of continuous service, and current salary. You will get:
Half a week's pay for each full year worked when you're under 22
A week's pay for each full year worked when you're between 22 and 41
One and a half week's pay for each full year worked when you're 41 or older
The length of service is capped at 20 years.
If you were paid less than usual because you were ‘on furlough’ because of coronavirus, your redundancy pay is based on what you would have earned normally.
If you still have holiday owed when you leave, you are entitled to be paid for that too.
Calculate your statutory redundancy pay
You can calculate your statutory redundancy entitlement here: