Law firm Simpson Millar reports that it has been contacted by six former NMCN workers who claim that they were not consulted over the job losses.
While administrators from Grant Thornton managed to save more than 1,600 jobs from NMCN after taking control of the business 6th October, it made nearly 100 people redundant – most from the building division.
Simpson Millar’s employment team has now begun investigations and is looking to secure a protective award for those affected. Where an Employment Tribunal finds in the favour of the employees, they will be able to access the funds of up to £4,352 via the Government Insolvency Service.
Anita North, an employment lawyer at Simpson Millar, said: “Sadly, we have been instructed by dozens of people who have been negatively impacted by job losses within the construction industry over the past year.”
She said that while many people would assume that the company would not have to follow the correct employment procedures because it had gone into administration, they still do have a duty of care to staff under employment law legislation.
“Regardless of whether a company is struggling financially, they still have a duty under current employment law legislation to carry out a proper consultation with staff at risk of redundancies,” she said. “Where that does not happen, employees can bring a claim for a protective award.”
Simpson Millar’s employment law team is currently instructed by former employees of other failed construction companies, including Cruden Construction and Cleveland Bridge.
“While the process to claim for a protective award will not result in an influx of cash immediately, legal protection remains in place to support people who are made redundant without being taken through the correct consultation process, and the money recovered in successful claims will provide some longer term security for those affected,” Anita North said.
Last month Simpson Millar secured a protective award of more than £328,000 for 99 ex-employees at J Rotherham Masonry who were made redundant in February 2020 when the business failed.