Redundancy & Maternity Leave
What can a female employee on maternity leave do if an employer furnishes to them a notification letter of Redundancy while on maternity leave ?.
Maternity Protection Act 1994
The purpose of the above act is to protect women who are on maternity leave from various detriments, most notably, loss of employment while availing of this protected leave period.
In the employer’s and the employees mind the person is absent from work while on the maternity leave.
The law obligates an employer though to treat the employee on maternity leave as if she is not absent at all. The employee while on leave maintains all her employment rights contained in her employment contract or from legislation etc.
S. 22 of the 1994 Act states the following:
During a period of absence from work by an employee while on—
( a) maternity leave,
(b) subsection (1) (a) leave, as defined in section 16 (3) , or
( c) leave granted under section 18 ,
and during a period of natal care absence, the employee shall be deemed to have been in the employment of the employer and, accordingly, while so absent the employee shall, subject to subsection (6) and section 24 be treated as if she or he had not been so absent; and such absence shall not affect any right (other than, except in the case of natal care absence, the employee’s right to remuneration during such absence), whether conferred by statute, contract or otherwise, and related to the employee’s employment.
A very strong legal protection for the female employee on maternity leave can be seen in S. 23 of the 1994 Act.
Very simply the law states that any purported termination of employment or even receiving a notice of termination from an employer is void at the outset. Therefore, the employer may send the employee a letter notifying her of the termination, however, this is not legally binding.
All of the following scenarios are offside:
- any purported termination of an employee’s employment while the employee is absent from work on protective leave;
- any purported termination of an employee’s employment during a period of natal care absence;
- any purported termination of an employee’s employment during a period of absence from work to attend ante-natal classes;
- any purported termination of an employee’s employment during a period of absence from work for breastfeeding;
- any notice of termination of an employee’s employment given while the employee is absent from work on protective leave and expiring subsequent to such a period of absence
- any notice of termination of an employee’s employment given during a period of natal care absence and expiring subsequent to such a period;
- any notice of termination of an employee’s employment given during a period of absence from work to attend ante-natal classes;
- any notice of termination of an employe ’s employment given during a period of absence from work for breastfeeding;
- any purported suspension from an employee ’s employment imposed while the employee is absent from work on protective leave, during a period of natal care absence or during a period of absence from work to attend ante-natal classes.
Return to Work
Receiving a letter from an employer regarding notification of Redundancy during this time evidently should not happen.
What the employee should know is that there are strong legal rights to activate and avail of should this happen to you.
An Adjudicator Officer ie decision maker at the Workplace Relations Commission can direct that that employee returns to work, that the employer facilitates the return to work at the conclusion of the maternity leave period, and that compensation is awarded to the employee.
The maximum compensation amount under the Maternity Protection Act is 20 weeks remuneration.
Disclaimer of this Maternity & Redundancy Article
Please be advised that the above-mentioned material is intended as an overview and as a broad out-line of the topic discussed. It should not be considered as complete and comprehensive legal advice, nor act as an appropriate substitute. Legal advice should be sought from a solicitor prior to relying on anything in this article.
Due care has been taken in the publication of this article and we do not accept legal liability as a result of reliance on any material covered in the above article.
Employment Law Articles
- Employment Law Ireland
- Unfair Dismissal Solicitors
- Protected Disclosures
- Constructive Dismissal Ireland
- Redundancy Ireland
- Bullying at the Workplace
- Workplace Harassment
- Discrimination at the Workplace
- Disciplinary Meetings & Fairness
- Deduction from Wages – Employment Law
- Dyslexia Discrimination at the Workplace
- Disability Discrimination at the Workplace
- Discrimination – Interview Process
- Disciplinary Procedure & Unfair Dismissal
- Workplace Investigations Ireland
- Age Discrimination in the Workplace
- Redundancy & Maternity Leave
- Redundancy Ireland Guide
- Redundancy Calculator Ireland
- Selection Criteria for Redundancy & Performance
- Selection Criteria for Redundancy & Genuine Consultation
- Redundancy & Temporary Lay-Offs
- Unfair Selection for Redundancy
- Redundancy & Consultations
- Redundancy Selection – Alternative Options
- Redundancy Claim Defence – Redeployment
- Retirement Ages & Discrimination
- Sick Leave & Covid-19
- Sick Pay Leave Bill
- Sick Leave & Dismissal
- Sick Pay Entitlement
- Gross Misconduct & Dismissal
- Health & Safety Unfair Dismissal
- Annual Leave Entitlement
- Calculating Loss in Unfair Dismissal Claims
- Unfair Dismissal Ireland – Probation
- Disability Discrimination Ireland
- Unfair Dismissal Claim – Employee Duty to Mitigate Loss
- Employee Verbal Warning Appeal
- Employer Delays Bullying Investigation
- Epilepsy Discrimination at the Workplace
- Disciplinary Meetings – Employment Law
- Filling out Workplace Relations Complaint Form
- Fixed-Term Employee & Pregnancy Dismissal
- Fixing Retirement Ages
- Statutory Break Entitlements
- Redundancy Selection in Ireland
- Redundancy Selection Criteria Matrix
- Time Limits – Cases
- Student Discrimination
- Severance Agreements & Tax Advice
- Terms of Employment 5 Day Rule
- Text Message & Disciplinary Meetings
- Transfer of Undertaking
- Unfair Dismissal Claim- Dismissal in Dispute
- Compensation for Unfair Dismissal
- Unfair Dismissal Claim & CCTV
- Workplace Statutory Rest Periods
- Gardai & Employment Disputes
- Gender Dismissal Discrimination
- Grievance Procedures & Constructive Dismissal
- Guide for Employees in Redundancy Selection Process
- Maternity Leave & Salary
- New Postponement Guidelines WRC
- Legal Representation at Disciplinary Hearings
- Part-Time Workers
- Plumbers & Pipefitters
- Pre-emptory Dismissal
- Pregnancy related Discrimination
- Pregnancy related Unfair Dismissal
- Proving Fairness in Unfair Dismissal Actions
- Race Discrimination in the Workplace
- Red Circling Defence
- Workplace Relations Commission
- Employment Notice Periods
- 3 Ingredients to Prove Workplace Victimization
- Christmas Bonus for Employees
- Covid-19 Force Majeure Leave
- Redundancy Ireland & Covid-19
- Defence to Disability Discrimination Claim Ireland
- Workplace Discrimination – Gender & Family Status ground
- Discrimination on a Licensed Premises
- Discrimination in Schools
- Employers Guide to Defending Unfair Dismissal Ireland
- Workplace Whistleblowing Policy
- Temporary Lay-Off & Covid 19
- Temporary Lay-off & Non-Payment of Wages
- Severance Agreement & Legal Advice
- Unfair Dismissal Claim – Mitigating Loss
Need Legal Advice ? No Problem. Contact Us Today !
We help people injured due to negligence* attain restitution to their pre-accident position, as much as is possible, for the pain, suffering & financial loss, by seeking damages from the negligent party on their behalf.