From 6th April 2024, employees who are pregnant or returning from maternity, adoption or shared parental leave will gain priority status for redeployment opportunities in a redundancy situation.

Under the current law, employees on maternity, shared parental or adoption leave already have special protection in a redundancy situation. They have the right to be offered a suitable alternative vacancy, if one is available, before being made redundant. This gives employees on these types of leave priority access to redeployment opportunities over other redundant employees.

However, under new legislation, The Protection from Redundancy (Pregnancy and Family Leave) Act 2023, it extends this priority status to pregnant employees and those who have recently returned from maternity, adoption and shared parental leave.

So, what does this mean?  Well, it means that pregnant employees are protected from the date they notify their employer of their pregnancy, lasting for a period of 18 months following the birth of the child. 

For those employees on adoption leave and shared parental leave, they are also protected for 18 months from the date of commencing adoption leave or shared parental leave.

Employers need to be aware that the protection only gives employees priority for redeployment opportunities and is not a ban on making employees redundant during the protected period. Employees with priority status can still be selected for redundancy. The protection kicks in when it comes to the allocation of alternative roles.  So if you are unaware of what this means for you, please contact Emma-Louise Hewitt or Carina Jheeta on 0121 746 3300 before it’s too late.


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