Redundancy Payments Act 1967
Change of ownership of business.
20.—(1) This section shall have effect where—
(a) a change occurs (whether by virtue of a sale or other disposition or by operation of law) in the ownership of a business for the purposes of which a person is employed, or of a part of such a business, and
(b) in connection with that change the person by whom the employee is employed immediately before the change occurs (in this section referred to as the previous owner) terminates the employee’s contract of employment, whether by or without notice.
(2) If, by agreement with the employee, the person (in this section referred to as the new owner) who immediately after the change occurs is the owner of the business or of the part of the business in question as the case may be renews the employee’s contract of employment (with the substitution of the new owner for the previous owner) or re-engages him under a new contract of employment, section 9 (2) shall have effect as if the renewal or re-engagement had been a renewal or re-engagement by the previous owner (without any substitution of the new owner for the previous owner).
(3) If the new owner offers to renew the employee’s contract of employment (with the substitution of the new owner for the previous owner) or to re-engage him under a new contract of employment, but the employee refuses the offer, section 15 (1) or section 15 (2) (as may be appropriate) shall have effect, subject to subsection (4) of this section, in relation to that offer and refusal as it would have had effect in relation to the like offer made by the previous owner and a refusal of that offer by the employee.
(4) For the purposes of the operation, in accordance with subsection (3) of this section, of section 15 (1) or 15 (2) in relation to an offer made by the new owner,—
(a) the offer shall not be treated as one whereby the provisions of the contract as renewed, or of the new contract, as the case may be, would differ from the corresponding provisions of the contract as in force immediately before the dismissal by reason only that the new owner would be substituted for the previous owner as the employer, and
(b) no account shall be taken of that substitution in determining whether the refusal of the offer was unreasonable.
(5) Subsections (1) to (4) shall have effect (subject to the necessary modifications) in relation to a case where—
(a) the person by whom a business, or part of a business, is owned immediately before a change is one of the persons by whom (whether as partners, trustees or otherwise) it is owned immediately after the change, or
(b) the persons by whom a business, or part of a business, is owned immediately before a change (whether as partners, trustees or otherwise) include the person by whom, or include one or more of the persons by whom, it is owned immediately after the change,
as those provisions have effect where the previous owner and the new owner are wholly different persons.
F49[(5A) In a case mentioned in subsection (1) (a), the new owner shall be estopped from denying that an employee was in continuous employment (within the meaning of Schedule 3) unless, within 26 weeks of the change of ownership, he notifies the employee of his intention so to deny.]
(6) Nothing in this section shall be construed as requiring any variation of a contract of employment by agreement between the parties to be treated as constituting a termination of the contract.
Inserted (1.09.1971) by Redundancy Payments Act 1971 (20/1971), s. 5, S.I. No. 230 of 1971.
Modifications (not altering text):
Application of section extended (1.09.1971) by Redundancy Payments Act 1971 (20/1971), s. 6(1), S.I. No. 230 of 1971.
Application of section 20 of Principal Act.
(i) a change relating to the control or management of a business (or part thereof) for the purposes of which a person is employed occurs, but a change in the ownership of the business (or part thereof) does not occur,
(ii) section 20 of the Principal Act would have applied to that change if it were a change in the ownership of that business (or part thereof), and
(iii) an employee of the previous owner accepts, before, on or within four weeks of the termination of his contract of employment with the previous owner, an offer by the new owner of employment in the same place of employment and on terms which are either the same as, or not materially less advantageous to the employee than, his existing terms of employment,
the said section 20 shall apply to that change as if a change of ownership of that business (or part thereof) had occurred.