Ex-employees of WRW Construction have taken the first steps towards taking the company to court after receiving official notice from the administrators that they had been made redundant.
Based in Llanelli, and with offices in Cardiff and Bristol, the business reportedly employed 100 members of staff when it made the shock announcement on Wednesday, July 7th that it had ceased trading.
Today, employees have also received formal notice that their roles are redundant, and more than 20 former members of staff have now formally instructed Aticus Law to pursue a Protective Awards claim for compensation on their behalf.
In the letter to staff from administrator Grant Thornton, staff were told that ‘the Company is no longer in a position to make payments to you for services rendered by you’, and that as a result they should regard their ‘contract of employment with the Company as terminated’.
The letter went on to state that claim for pay in lieu of notice is ‘effectively a claim for breach of contract’ as the circumstances meant they were unable to work their notice period for the Company.
Aticus Law says it has now been contacted by 21 former employees who plan to take WRW to court for their case to be heard by an employment tribunal over concerns about how the redundancy process was managed.
If successful, those involved in the challenge will be entitled to up to eight weeks’ worth of pay in compensation, with a cap of £538 per week.
Mohammed Balal of Aticus Law today urged others who had been affected by the construction company’s demise to ensure their job title was included in the legal claim.
He said: “There’s just no denying that it’s tough for businesses at the moment, and many are facing the prospect of going out of business and having to let go of staff.
“However, as employers, they are still beholden to employment law. That means, if they are proposing to make more than 20 employees redundant at one establishment, they must follow the correct consultation process.
“Based on what our clients are telling us, that wasn’t necessarily the case at WRW Construction.
“When the business announced it had collapsed last week we were contacted by around a dozen former employees who were concerned about their jobs.
“Following today’s news that they have officially been made redundant more than 20 people have instructed us to investigate whether there are grounds to claim for a Protective Award, which is basically compensation awarded by an Employment Tribunal if an employer fails in its duties.
“It’s a really vital safety net for so many families in fast-paced redundancy situations that often leave them with no source of income and absolutely no notice.
“However, many people don’t realise that you can only get a Protective Award payment if you are included as part of the claim and are listed as part of the Schedule of Claimants attached to the Tribunal Judgment.
“You can’t simply watch from the side-lines while ex-colleagues take the legal challenge forward. It’s important to make sure your name and specific job title is included.”
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