Jobcentre Plus Redundancy Support Pack - North West Region August 2010

 
Jobcentre Plus Redundancy Support Pack - North West Region August 2010
Jobcentre Plus
Redundancy Support Pack

North West Region August 2010
Contents

    • Redundancy Rights and Information

    • Financial Information

    • Jobsearch

    • Welfare Benefits

    • Other Options

    • Useful Contacts

*All information is correct at time of going to print   08/10

North West Region August 2010
Redundancy Rights and Information

Redundancy Payment and Employment Rights
If you have been made redundant seek advice as soon as possible from your employer, union or
one of the agencies listed at the end of this section as you may be entitled to statutory or
contractual redundancy payments, notice or pay in lieu of notice and outstanding accrued holiday
pay. The amount you may be entitled to will depend on a number of factors, for example years of
service, hours of work, age and wages. A maximum of 20 complete years of service may be
counted towards redundancy pay (service before the age of 18 does not count). The amount
calculated for one week’s pay is currently capped at £380. Redundancy pay is tax free up to a
maximum of £30,000. These rates may change, please check with the Redundancy Payments
Helpline for the current rates.

Statutory Redundancy Entitlement is:
      •   1½ weeks pay for each complete year of continuous service where the employee is aged
          41 years or over
      •   1 weeks pay for each complete year of continuous service where the employee is aged
          less than 41 but is over 22
      •   ½ of one weeks pay for each complete year of continuous service where the employee is
          aged less than 22 but over 18
Up to a maximum of 30 weeks pay capped at £380 per week (£11,400)

A calculator for redundancy pay can be found on the Business Link web site
Company Insolvency
If your firm ‘goes bust’ (legally insolvent) and you are owed money for arrears of pay and / or
redundancy payments, you may make a claim from a government fund
You can claim up to a maximum of:
      •   8 weeks arrears of pay
      •   6 weeks in respect of last 12mths accrued holiday pay
      •   12 weeks pay in lieu of notice (one week’s pay for each year of your employment)
These payments are capped at £380 gross per week
Claims for arrears of pay and for statutory redundancy payments should be made, in the first
instance, to the receiver of your company, or then to the Redundancy Payment Service.
Disputes about employment rights including unfair dismissal or monies due on dismissal are dealt
with by the Employment Tribunal Service. Please note you must submit a claim within 3 months or
6 months in the case of Statutory Redundancy pay.
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Redundancy and Employment Rights
A number of organisations offer advice to people who have been made redundant. This can range
from employment rights and legal issues through to money matters and benefit entitlement. Please
remember any lump sum payment you receive, including redundancy payment and any
occupational pension and capital you may have, could affect benefit entitlement.

ACAS provide a range of advice and information on employment relations, employment rights and
redundancy related issues.
The Insolvency Service provides information if the company you are working for goes into
receivership.
Trade Unions
Employers must consult with Trade Union Representatives regarding any proposed redundancies,
where there is a recognised Trade Union in the workplace. Where there is no Trade Union, or you
are not a member, ask your Personnel Department who your Employee Representative is and
speak to them. Your employer has a duty to consult with you as an employee.
The Trade Union Congress (TUC) provides a help-line if you want to join a Union, and also a
website and leaflet relating to redundancy and employment rights.
To contact any of the above organisations please see Useful Contact Section.

Financial Information
Check list (when leaving your job)
You should receive your full entitlement to wages, plus payment for any outstanding period of
notice that you have not worked. You should also receive:
      •   Accrued holiday pay
      •   Details of your personal pension arrangements
      •   Income tax form P45
      •   References – agreed by your employer
      •   Redundancy pay (subject to two years continuous service)
      •   Letter stating date of redundancy and calculation of any redundancy pay

Lump sum payment
If you receive a lump sum it may include a payment in lieu of notice as well as a redundancy
payment. These may affect your benefit entitlement. (See Welfare Benefit section).

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You need to think carefully about how you use any lump sum payment. If you have to claim
benefits in the future the Department for Work and Pensions may need to know how you spent it.
You could seek advice from an independent advice agency.
Money Made Clear – is managed by the FSA and includes various toolkits and advice on how to
avoid debt problems.
Helpline: 0845 606 1234 or www.moneymadeclear.fsa.gov.uk/

The National Debtline – is a free to use debt advice phone service
Tel: 0808 808 400

Consumer Credit Counselling Service
0800 138 1111 or www.cccs.co.uk
Shelter
0808 800 4444 or www.shelter.org.uk

Community Legal Advice
0845 345 4345 or www.communitylegaladvice.org.uk

Citizens Advice Bureau – is funded by the Government to offer specialised debt advice.

The general website address is: http://www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Maintenance / Child Support
If you are paying maintenance and child support through the Child Support Agency, you should ask
for a re-assessment because your income has dropped. If you are paying through any other
independent arrangement, you may wish to re-negotiate.

Protecting your pension rights
If you have been paying into a company pension make sure you find out about your accrued rights.
Advice on pensions can be obtained from The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS)
Do not take any action without any further expert advice.

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Jobsearch
Looking for a job
There are many sources of vacancy information available to you.
       •   Jobseeker Direct (0845 60 60 234) – a telephone service provided by Jobcentre Plus to
           access vacancies
       •   Jobpoints – online access to vacancies at your local Jobcentre Plus office
       •   Jobcentre Plus website – www.direct.gov.uk – 24 hr access to vacancies.
If you need help with applying for a job or advice on how to job search then Jobcentre Plus may
refer you to your local Programme Centre or other Jobsearch support. They will be able to:
       •   Help you decide what types of job might suit you
       •   Help you write a CV
       •   Help you with application forms
       •   Give advice on interview techniques
       •   Give practical advice on how to look for a job.

Connexions (The Careers Service) have vacancy information available as well as careers advice
for people aged 13-19.
Applying for a job
Once you have found a job you are interested in you will find that there are lots of different ways of
applying. Companies may want you to:
       •   Complete an application form
       •   Write to them enclosing your CV
       •   Apply online
A CV is a short account about you, your work experience and qualifications. It should ideally be
two sides of A4 giving a potential employer key facts about you. If you have a disability, which
means you are unable to produce a written or typed CV, you could send an audio version.
If you do not have access to a personal computer, contact UK Online by telephoning 0800 77
1234. They will have details of local online centres. Sites are also listed on www.ufi.com/ukol

Going for an interview
You need to prepare for your interview before the day.
       •   Try to get as much information about the company and job as you can
       •   Find out if the interview involves a test and what that might entail
       •   Plan your journey and leave plenty of time for getting there
       •   Prepare for questions you might be asked

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•   Think about questions you might want to ask them
       •   Take plenty of time to get ready
       •   Think about what you will wear

At the interview
       •   Try to be relaxed
       •   Take any supporting documents with you, for example certificates, driving licence etc
       •   Take a copy of the application form, to remind you what you have said
       •   Be polite and friendly
       •   Look interested, but don’t talk too much
       •   Sell yourself and be positive
Remember that employers like people who listen, answer questions with examples, come prepared
and appear confident.

If you get the job
Congratulations. You will need to formally to accept the job and agree a start date. If you are
claiming benefits you will also need to let your Jobcentre Plus office know. They will send you a
new P45 to take to your new employer.

If you don’t get the job
Don’t be disheartened. Remember every interview is a chance to gain more experience and to
improve your techniques. Always ask the employer for feedback, you can use this information to
improve for your next interview.

Work Trials
A Work Trial is an opportunity for you and your employer to try each other out. You could try out a
job for a short period. You will still get your benefits as well as receiving travel and meal expenses
while you are on a Work Trial. Talk to your local Jobcentre Plus adviser for more details. Eligibility
conditions apply.

Working in Europe
UK citizens have the right to live and work in any European Economic Area (EEA) country. You
can search for a job abroad from the Jobcentre Plus website or from a touch-screen Jobpoint at
your local Jobcentre Plus office.
Jobcentre Plus is part of the European Employment Services network (EURES); a partnership
between the Public Employment Services in the EEA that promotes job mobility in Europe.

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Welfare Benefits
Benefits that may be available to you:

Jobseeker’s Allowance (Contribution & Income based)
      • Contribution Based Jobseeker’s Allowance
          o Applicable if:
                    You are available for, capable of and actively seeking full-time work
                    You are unemployed or working less than 16 hours per week
                    You have paid enough National Insurance contributions
          o Paid:
                    For up to 26 weeks
                    Current rates of Jobseekers Allowance (contribution based):
                             Single aged 16-24        £51.85
                             Single aged 25+          £65.45
                             Couple (both aged 18+)   £102.75
      • Income Based Jobseeker’s Allowance
          o Applicable if:
                    You are available for, capable of and actively seeking full-time work
                    You are unemployed or working less than 16 hours per week
                    You have £16,000 or less savings (savings over £6,000 will reduce the amount
                    of Income Based Jobseeker’s Allowance you receive)
                    You are unemployed and looking for work and your partner is not working
                    more that 24 hours per week
                    The amount you get depends on your individual circumstances and needs e.g.
                    if you have a family you could receive more. In some circumstances help may
                    be available for mortgage or home improvement loan interest.
Both types of Jobseeker’s Allowance can be claimed at the same time (Income based Jobseeker’s
Allowance can top up your Contribution Based Jobseeker’s Allowance).

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How will my last payment affect the benefits I get?
Redundancy payment
Will be treated as capital and may affect your entitlement.
Pay in Lieu of Notice and Holiday Pay
Pay in Lieu of Notice and Holiday Pay will not be treated as income on new claims to Jobseekers
Allowance. Instead it will be treated as capital. For Jobseekers Allowance (Contributory) it will be
ignored completely.
This means that you can make a claim to JSA on your first day of unemployment

Occupational and Personal Pensions
If you are in receipt of an occupational, private or personal pension this may affect your Jobseekers
Allowance entitlement.

Passport to Other Benefits
If you receive Income Based Jobseekers Allowance you may be entitled to:
       •   Housing Benefit
       •   Council Tax Benefit
       •   Help with NHS costs
       •   Free prescriptions
       •   Help with dental treatment
       •   Help with sight tests
       •   Vouchers towards the cost of glasses and travel for hospital appointments
       •   Free school meals
       •   Milk tokens for children under school age

How to Claim
To make a benefit claim call: 0800 055 66 88
Text phone: 0800 023 48 88 if you are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech difficulties.
Calls to DWP 0800 numbers are free from BT landlines, Vodafone, T-Mobile, 02, Orange, Virgin
Media and Tesco. Charges for calls from cable and other network providers may be different.
Phone lines are open from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday.

Alternatively, you can make a claim for Contributions Based Jobseekers Allowance online. This
can be accessed via “Jobseeker’s Allowance Online” through www.direct.gov.uk.
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Benefits Advice on line
The “Benefits Adviser” is an online questionnaire to help you find out which benefits and tax credits
you and your family may be entitled to, and if you are entitled to the State Pension.
www.direct.gov.uk Go straight to “Money, tax and benefits” and click on “Benefits Adviser”.

Other Options
Self employment
If you want to find out whether setting up a business might be an option, you may want to have an
introductory discussion with a Business Link Adviser. They will explain the support available both
in the preparation of the launch of your business and in the first few years.
A range of training courses, workshops or seminars may be available to you. Specific topics are
covered to help you develop the skills needed to run your own business successfully.

Further and Higher Education
You may consider going to University. Entry requirements for mature students (i.e. 21 years or
older) vary between institutions but applications are welcomed from adults with relevant work
experience or those who have undertaken an Access Course. These are designed to meet the
needs of adults who would like to undertake higher education, but who lack traditional academic
qualifications. An Access Course can act as a bridging course, enabling you to gain in confidence
and academic skills before progressing on to a degree course.
Contact individual institutions (Colleges / Universities) in order to find an Access Course to meet
your needs.

Short Courses
Short courses via the internet, available throughout the UK, are accessed by registering with one of
the many Learn Direct providers, including colleges and some libraries and then working at home
or at a local centre. Courses include Computer Skills, English, Mathematics, Business Studies and
Customer Service.
There are a number of Learn Direct centres in the area. Contact details can be found in Useful
Contacts section.
Voluntary Work
Volunteering can provide you with a wealth of experience and new skills to help you get a job. The
National Association for Voluntary and Community Action (NAVCA) is a national organisation
looking for volunteers in your area. Contact details can be found in the Useful Contacts section.

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Useful contacts
Useful contacts; websites and telephone numbers
Internet access may be available through your local library of you do not have access to a PC.

Jobcentre Plus                                        www.direct.gov.uk
Jobseeker Direct                                      0845 606 0234
                                                      0845 605 5255 (Textphone Users)

Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service        www.acas.org.uk
(ACAS) (Employment rights helpline)                   08457 47 47 47
                                                      08456 06 1600 (Textphone Users)
Business Link (Self Employment and information www.businesslink.gov.uk
on rights to notice and redundancy pay)        0845 600 9006

Career information, advice and guidance for           www.connexions.gov.uk
young people and adults                               080 800 132 19

Citizens Advice Bureau                                www.adviceguide.org.uk

European Employment Services (EURES)                  www.europa.eu.int/eures/home.jsp
                                                      or via Jobcentre Plus website
EURES Adviser                                         0113 307 8098
Independent Financial Advice                          www.unbiased.co.uk
                                                      0800 085 3250
                                                      0800 083 0196 (Type Talk)
Learn Direct                                          www.learndirect.co.uk

Course and Centre Information                         0800 101 901
Training Advice                                       0800 100 900
Skills Funding Agency                                 www.skillsfundingagency.bis.gov.uk
                                                      0845 377 5000
Young People’s learning Agency                        www.ypla.gov.uk
                                                      0845 337 2000
National Debt line                                    www.nationaldebtline.co.uk
                                                      0800 731 7973
National Association for Voluntary and                www.navca.org.uk
Community Action (NAVCA)                              0114 278 6636

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Next Step                              www.nextstep.org.uk
                                       0800 931 700

Redundancy Payments Helpline           0845 145 0004

Tax Credits Helpline                   www.hmrc.gov.uk
                                       0845 300 3900

The Insolvency Service                 www.insolvency.gov.uk

The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS)   www.pensionadvisoryservice.org.uk
                                       0845 601 2923

The Pension Service                    www.pensionguide.gov.uk
                                       0845 60 60 265

Trade Union Congress                   www.tuc.org.uk
                                       0870 600 4882
                                       www.worksmart.org.uk/rights

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