In RPD 1910 being a case of CH Marine Limited and O’Connor the Labour Court had looked at the issue of redundancy where an employee resigned.
The Labour Court looked at Section 2 and Section 9 of the legislation.
The Labour Court held that the clear import of the provisions is that a dismissal for the purposes of the Act being the Redundancy Payment Act can be effected constructively by the employee himself or herself.
The Court held that the employee in this case constructively dismissed himself within the meaning of Section 9 (1) (c) of the Act in circumstances where he had been told in an email that following a period of extended sick leave without any prior consultation that his job awaited him in Cork rather than Bandon. The employee had been employed in Bandon for over 10 years at that point in time. The Court found that the conduct was a reasonable response to the employer’s unilateral decision to relocate the job from Bandon to Cork. There was no job available for the Complainant in his established place of work. The alternative offer to him would have necessitated an unreasonable additional daily commute for him. In all the circumstances the Court therefore found that the Complainant was entitled to Statutory Redundancy payments based on the service which he had.
This is a helpful decision of the Labour Court. It is not the first decision that the Labour Court has made on this point but it does mean that if an employer seeks to relocate an employee to an unsuitable location the employee is entitled to resign and claim redundancy.
The legislation on this is quite precise and it is one of those areas where the employee needs to get clear advice, normally, before resigning.
*Before acting or refraining from acting on anything in this guide, legal advice should be sought from a solicitor.
**In contentious cases, a solicitor may not charge fees or expenses as a portion or percentage of any award of settlement.