How to handle relocation of business premises
Author: Claire Birkinshaw
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- Be aware that the dismissal of employees because they do not wish to move to new business premises will normally constitute a redundancy dismissal.
- However, consider whether there is a valid and applicable mobility clause that can be invoked at the outset to implement a business relocation rather than following a redundancy programme.
- Be aware that any subsequent dismissal for refusal to relocate, where a mobility clause has been activated, would usually be for misconduct.
- If invoking a mobility clause, consult employees about the relocation.
- If no mobility clause is activated, if an employee refuses to move to the new business premises, consider whether or not he or she has unreasonably refused an offer of suitable alternative employment.
- Commence redundancy consultation with the affected employees as soon as possible and bear in mind that collective as well as individual consultation may be required.
- Be aware of the possibility of an indirect sex discrimination claim from women who refuse to move to the new premises.