If you’re being made redundant, you might be entitled to redundancy pay.
You’ll only get redundancy pay if it is a genuine redundancy - check if your redundancy is fair.
There are 2 types of redundancy pay you could get:
‘statutory’ redundancy pay - what the law says you’re entitled to
‘contractual’ redundancy pay - extra money your contract says you can get on top of the statutory amount
If you're entitled to either type of redundancy pay, it'll be paid by your employer.
You’ll get statutory redundancy pay if you:
have been employed by your employer for 2 years continuously
have lost your job because there was a genuine need to make redundancies in your workplace
are a particular kind of worker called an ‘employee’ - this includes part-time employees
Read more about who is classed as an employee on GOV.UK.
You will be entitled to statutory redundancy pay if your employer doesn’t renew your fixed-term contract because the job doesn’t exist any more and you had either:
a fixed-term contract for 2 years or more
shorter contracts that followed on from each other and added up to 2 years or more
You won’t get statutory redundancy pay if you:
have worked in your job less than 2 years
are a police officer or in the armed forces
are a Crown servant, parliamentary staff or holder of public office (for example, a Justice of the Peace)
are a share fisherperson
are domestic staff working for your immediate family
are an employee of a foreign government
Even if you can’t get statutory redundancy pay, you might be able to get contractual redundancy pay. Make sure you check your contract to see what it says about redundancy pay.
Even if you’re entitled to statutory redundancy pay, you could lose your right to it if you:
turn down a suitable alternative job your employer offered you without a good reason
want to leave before the job is due to end - for example, because you’ve found another job
are fired for gross misconduct before your job finishes
Read more about being offered an alternative job.
You can see how much redundancy pay you'd get using the redundancy pay calculator on GOV.UK.
Redundancy pay is based on your earnings before tax (called gross pay).
For each full year you've worked for your employer, you get:
If you turned 22 or 41 while working for your employer, the higher rates only apply for the full years you were over 22 or 41.
You won't pay any tax on your statutory redundancy pay.
There are some limits to how much money you’ll get:
the maximum weekly amount you can get is £544 - even if you earn more per week
you can only get redundancy pay for a maximum of 20 years’ work (for example, if you’ve worked at your job for 23 years, you’ll only get redundancy pay for 20 years)
The time you've worked for your employer is called your length of service. Work this out by counting the number of full years you've worked for your employer. Your length of service should start on your first day at work and finish on the day your employment ends.
You might be unsure what your length of service is if:
In these situations you can work out your length of service by adding on the amount of statutory notice you should have had. For example, if you were entitled to 4 weeks' statutory notice but your employer only gave 2 weeks, add another 2 weeks to get your end date. You can't add any extra notice your contract says you're entitled to.
Don’t worry if you’re getting sick pay that’s less than your usual pay when you’re made redundant. Your redundancy pay will be based on your usual pay from before you were off sick.
If you’re made redundant while you’re on maternity leave, your redundancy pay will be based on your normal pay. It doesn’t matter if you’re earning less than usual at the time you’re made redundant.
If your contract doesn’t set out your ‘normal hours of work’ (how many hours each week you need to work), your weekly pay will be worked out as an average.
The average will be based on what you earned in the 12 weeks before you were told you’d be made redundant. This includes any commission you made in that time.
If your employer is working out your average weekly pay, they should base it on the last 12 weeks you actually worked. Your employer shouldn’t include any weeks you were on furlough.
People on zero-hours contracts might be entitled to redundancy pay - but it can be very complicated to work out, so contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help.
Your overtime won’t usually be included in your weekly pay, unless it was regular and you had to do it as part of your job.
Contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help working out what should be included in your redundancy pay.
If you’ve agreed to take a drop in pay because the business you work for is struggling, your redundancy pay could be affected. It depends whether you agreed to change your contract or not.
This can be difficult to work out so contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help.
If you’ve been laid off or put on short-time working, and then made redundant, your redundancy pay will be based on your usual weekly pay when you did your normal hours.
The only time this won’t apply is if you agreed to a permanent change in the number of hours you work.
If the company you work for has been taken over through a transfer of undertaking (TUPE), working out redundancy pay can be complicated.
Contact your nearest Citizens Advice to discuss your options.
There are things you can do to claim money your employer owes you - including statutory redundancy pay.
What you need to do depends on whether your employer is ‘insolvent’. This is a legal process an employer goes through if they can’t pay their debts and have to close. It’s also known as being in ‘liquidation’ or ‘administration’.
If your employer is insolvent, someone should contact you to tell you what you need to do to claim your statutory redundancy pay.
You can also claim other money you’re owed if your employer is insolvent - for example, holiday pay or notice pay. You can get this even if you’ve worked there less than 2 years and can’t get statutory redundancy pay.
You should check if your employer is insolvent if they’ve:
You’ll be contacted by whoever is dealing with your employer’s insolvency - known as an ‘insolvency practitioner’.
They’ll tell you how to apply to the government for your statutory redundancy pay, as well as other money your employer owes you. You claim this money through the ‘Redundancy Payments Service’.
Check your rights and what you can claim on GOV.UK.
You might be able to claim your statutory redundancy pay from the government.
Before you can do this, you’ll need to go to an employment tribunal to make a redundancy pay claim. The tribunal will decide whether you’re entitled to redundancy pay or not.
If they agree that you are, you can make a claim for your statutory redundancy pay through the ‘Redundancy Payments Service’.
You should get help from an adviser if you need to claim your statutory redundancy pay when your employer isn’t insolvent.
You’ll only be able to claim statutory redundancy pay through the Redundancy Payments Service. You won’t be able to claim any other money your employers owes you - unless they go into insolvency later.
You can check if your employer is insolvent by searching the register of companies on GOV.UK. If a company on the register is insolvent, you’ll see a tab that says ‘insolvency’ on their listing.
If you can’t find them, it might mean their company has another name that’s different to the ‘trading name’ they usually use. You might be able to find their other name by:
If you still can’t find them, it might mean your employer’s business isn’t a company, and they're registered as a ‘sole trader’ or ‘partnership’ under their personal name.
You can search the bankruptcy and insolvency registers on GOV.UK - these let you search for a person by name, as well their business’s name.
Your employer might pay you extra money on top of the statutory amount you’re entitled to - this is called contractual redundancy pay. Make sure you check your contract to see what it says.
If you haven’t been given a contract or it’s not in there, ask your employer or check your staff handbook or intranet.
You should check any written agreement you made with your employer when you were furloughed. It might have included an agreement to reduce your pay.
If your employer is working out your redundancy pay based on your reduced pay, you should contact your nearest Citizens Advice.
Your employer should tell you how any contractual redundancy pay is calculated and when you’ll get your payment.
By law, your employer’s contractual redundancy pay can’t be less than the statutory amount.
You’ll have to pay tax on a redundancy payment if it’s more than £30,000. Your employer will deduct any tax for you.
Working out the tax on your redundancy pay can be complicated so contact your nearest Citizens Advice if you need help.
If you’re a member of a union, speak to your union rep first - they should have been involved in the redundancy negotiations.
If there isn’t a union at your work, you might have an employee representative to help you understand the redundancy agreement.
If you don’t have any representatives at work, contact your nearest Citizens Advice. Ask your employer for a copy of your redundancy agreement for an adviser to look at.
Your employer should pay you your redundancy pay on the date you leave work, or an agreed date soon after.
They’ll pay you in the same way they paid your wages, for example into your bank account.
You should also get a written statement saying how your payment was calculated.
Your employer should pay your redundancy pay in the same way they paid your wages. If they don’t, you can take steps to get your pay.
If you need more help at any stage, contact your nearest Citizens Advice.
Take the following steps:
Tell them what you’re entitled to and include any evidence you have to back up your argument.
If you don’t get your payment after sending your letter, you need to contact Acas.
Acas provides independent support to help sort out employment disputes. They'll see if your employer will agree to a process called ‘early conciliation' - a way to resolve disputes without going to a tribunal.
The quickest way to start is to fill in the early conciliation form on the Acas website. Or you can call the Acas early conciliation team on 0300 123 1122.
Your last resort is to take your employer to a tribunal. Going to a tribunal can be expensive and stressful, so it’s a good idea to get advice from your local Citizens Advice before you go ahead.
Your deadline for claiming any redundancy pay you’re owed is 6 months minus a day from the last day you were employed. If you’re also claiming for unfair dismissal or notice pay, then you have 3 months less a day.
If your employer has gone out of business and is insolvent, and you haven’t been paid your redundancy, use the ‘Claim for redundancy and monies owed’ service on GOV.UK.
If your employer has gone out of business but isn’t insolvent, you need to make a redundancy pay claim to an employment tribunal - contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help with this.
Online Advice is provided by citizensadvice.org.uk; copyright © 2021 Citizens Advice