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Case studies - Discrimination

A Which? Legal member recently called our specialist employment lawyers about her selection for redundancy based on her employer’s policy of ‘last in, first out’. 

The member told our lawyer that she had been made redundant but said that she was definitely not the most recent employee to join the company. She wanted to know what she could do.

Which? Legal Advice can help

Our legal team told the member that the rule ‘last in, first out’ is no longer acceptable as a means of selection for redundancy as it discriminates against younger workers. However, the length of service can be included as part of a wider selection criteria. In this case, we advised that the issue appears to be that there were others doing the same sort of work that she did, who had not been included in the selection pool. 

We advised that the employer is required to identify a suitable pool from which to select (which should include all those doing the sort of work that she did) and then they should select candidates for redundancy from within that pool using a fair selection criteria. 

Legal points

If you’re made redundant but your employer has failed to follow procedural requirements, it is quite possible that an employment tribunal would find the dismissal to be unfair and would award the appropriate compensation if you make a claim.