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What is the layoff process? Need Advice please!

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We received a notice at our union meeting the other day about layoffs going to take place on April 24th from my department.


Who do they let go first is my main question?


They said it will be less than 10 people and we have facilities in other cities.


Does anyone know what they base their criteria on when laying off?


Also in the statement they said they would give those laid off a severance package if they sign an agreement not to make any claims against them...what does that mean?


I have been there over 3 years (this is my 4th year) never been laid off so don't have any idea what it's like.


I am not sure that I will be or not, basically, I am just asking in case someone knows or works in HR or management on here that could give me a bit of advice.


Also what would be your game plan if you were laid off? What are the steps you would take not to get yourself in a rut?


If it does happen to me I am going to continue my education, see if my resume is up-to-date, get to the unemployment office, and start looking for a new job asap! If anyone has other thoughts or ideas please share them with me.


I am a bit nervous, but all in all I will find a way to survive.


Any help will be greatly appreciated

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We're going through layoffs now - it's pretty normal in my industry, they happen a couple times a year.


Basic answers from my own management experience:


1. Formulas and strategy for who is let go varies from company to company, depending on reasons for the cuts. It can be based on pay scale, redundancy of position, change of direction in strategy, alteration in product lines, technological obsoletion, etc etc. Best way to figure this out is to determine the reasons for the layoff and what's currently going on within your company.


2.The severance package carrot and stick is normal. They just want to ensure you won't sue them for wrongful termination - everyone does this nowadays to make the lawyers happy. It's a rotten trick but since most of us need the money, we suck it up and sign. If you really DID have cause for wrongful termination, that paper can be overturned during the legal process, but it gets expensive unless you have a really good case. The companies bet that you won't try (and for a basic layoff, you really wouldn't have a chance most of the time)


3. Since I'm always on the edge of being laid off my game plan is this: live as financially responsibly as possible meaning lots of money in savings and whatever protection you can get (mortgage insurance, credit card insurance if you carry high balances for some reason). Figure out health insurance - COBRA is phenomenally and backbreakingly expensive - I would have to let my insurance lapse - I couldn't handle $2000 a month in premiums. NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK Start hitting up your contacts for potential jobs. Get your resume up to date and in a desirable format. Get up on the different job boards. Research what's going on at companies in your area, etc etc.

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If you are a member of a union, then your particular union rules determine who will get cut. For many unions, it is dependent on seniority (who has been there the shortest time usually goes) and or along location or product lines (if they are closing a location or obsoleting a product, those people would go).


Unions have much tighter/stricter rules regarding layoffs, so you will be protected if you're in a certain class, and not if you're in another. In corporate layoffs, frequently older people are cut because they are more expensive, but in unions, older people have more protections than younger people due to seniority.


So if they lay you off, I'd take the money and run. It is very hard to win a lawsuit in tough economic times unless you genuinely think you have a cause for discrimination (i.e., you are the only woman in the plant and are cut, or are the only minority and get cut).


The money might be a gift to help you get educated in something where you can get a better job, so that is a good idea to attend school if the education will make you more employable, or result in a better job.


Best of luck, either way!

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So if they lay you off, I'd take the money and run. It is very hard to win a lawsuit in tough economic times unless you genuinely think you have a cause for discrimination (i.e., you are the only woman in the plant and are cut, or are the only minority and get cut).


This is even hard to prove. I worked at one company who was careful to lay off a black, a hispanic, a disabled individual, and a transgender individual!! Try proving discrimination when they ticked all the boxes. I actually wondered if someone would try it anyway, since it was so obvious that HR made an attempt to hit one of each group...

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If you take the severance package does that mean your not allowed to file an umemployment claim?


As I mentioned before I am in the middle of my fourth year and there have been many people hired in my department over the last three and half years at least 25.


lol...I am not stressin as hard as my other co-workers...I am going to take things day by day...everything happens for a reason. Don't worry over things you cannot control, but I do want to be prepared in case I do get dismissed.


As long as I am healthy then everything will be fine...I am a smart resourceful cookie *wink*.


Thanks for any help I can get !

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No not at all. You can still file for unemployment with the state. I took a 10 week severance from my last employer and also took CA state unemployment insurance at the appropriate time. It sucked but better than nothing.


How long did you work for your company? Did they give you your severance package for every year you worked there?


Also, if a person is laid off can you get a retrain from the state through the EDD?


wow 10 weeks that must have been a good package.


I know employers are using tactics to keep employees from making claims at the unemployment department.


BTW how much does unemployment give you and for how long?

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Severance packages vary widely. Some are only 2 weeks, and others can be a year or two.


If you belong to a union, there are many structured rules for benefits and the union might be able to fill you in on what to expect.


But if they award benefits based on seniority and are only doing 10 people and there are 25 newer than you, you most likely will be safe unless they are ramping down at your locaiton only or you have performance problems.


If you were laid off thru a union, i doubt the employer would be able to deny you unemployment benefits with the state.


Usually you can't 'double dip' (i.e., draw unemployment pay at the same time you are drawing severance), but once the severance has been exhausted, you can then start drawing state benefits.


To find you how much the state pays, google unemployment benefits in your state. They will have a website that tells you what the benefits are based on your salary.

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