What Notice Should an Employer Provide for Layoffs?

What Notice Should an Employer Provide for Layoffs?


Because of the economic downturn, companies as well as the management plan have no choice but to make hard decisions to maintain the company’s bottom line. This decision includes downsizing and laying off employees. But the problem in this situation is that employers tend to make mistakes when laying off employees.

One of their main problems is that whether or not they will give notice in pdf to their employees and what notice they should provide.

However, the federal law does not require an employer to give any notice if the situation is not covered by the WARN Act and if the layoff is economical.

Don’ts When Firing an Employee

Firing an employee is stressful for both parties, especially for the employees. Do not make it had for them by doing things that are unlikely be done when firing an employee. So, here are the don’t’s when firing an employee.

  • Don’t fire an employee unless in a face-to-face meeting.
  • Don’t fire an employee without giving a warning notice or statement.
  • Don’t fire an employee without a witness.
  • Don’t let the employee think that it is not a final decision.
  • Don’t let the employee leave while possessing company property.
  • Don’t let the employee have access his or her work area and all the information system of the company after being fired.

Are Employers Required to Disclose a Future Layoff to an Employee?

The short answer to this question is yes. The long answer, however, is that the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (or the WARN Act) requires the employers to give an advance 60 days written notice of mass layoff of more than 50 employees during any 30-day notice period as part of a plant closing.

The WARN Act also requires the employers to give free notice of any mass layoff even if it does not result from a plant closing but will result in terminating of more than 500 or more employee jobs during any 30-day period.

What You Need to Know about Temporary Layoffs

  • The employer can temporarily lay off an employee in the following situations:
    • If it is written in the employee contract notice letter.
    • If the temporary layoff is common in the industry-wide practice.
    • If the employee agrees to the temporary layoff.
  • The temporary layoff is permitted to the maximum of 13 weeks in a consecutive 20-week period.
    The 20-week period begins on the first day of the layoff.
  • If the temporary layoff exceeds 13 weeks in a consecutive 20-week period, it becomes a termination of employment.
  • The temporary layoff of the employee will result in a termination notice of the employee’s employment and the employees must receive termination/severance pay.

The Mistakes Employers Make When Laying Off Employees

Here are the common mistakes committed by the employers when laying off employee notice.

  • Calling the poor performance-related termination of the employee a “layoff.”
  • Developing layoffs without a written layoff plan or layoff process.
  • Not being able to evaluate or assess the adverse impact of the layoff decision.
  • Not following the requirements for 40-plus-year-olds affected by the layoff under Older Workers Benefit Protection Act.
  • Failing to give an advance formal notice or warning notice of mass layoff under the WARN Act.