Archive for the ‘WARN’ Category

Under most circumstances the answer would be no, however there is a federal regulation that is sometimes applicable in this situation. The statute is the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN).

WARN generally covers employers with 100 or more employees, not counting those who have worked less than six months in the last 12 months and those who work less than 20 hours per week, or those employers with 100 or more employees, including part-time workers, who in the aggregate work at least 4,000 hours per week, exclusive of overtime. Regular federal, state, and local government entities that provide public services are not covered. Employees entitled to notice under WARN include managers and supervisors as well as hourly and salaried workers.

WARN protects workers, their families, and communities by requiring employers to provide notification 60 calendar days in advance of plant closings and mass layoffs. A covered plant closing occurs when a facility or operating unit is shut down for more than six months, or when 50 or more employees lose their jobs during any 30‑day period at a single site of employment. A covered mass layoff occurs when 50 to 499 employees are affected during any 30-day period at a single employment site (or for certain multiple related layoffs, during a 90-day period), if these employees represent at least 33 percent of the employer’s workforce where the layoff will occur, and the layoff results in an employment loss for more than six months. If the layoff affects 500 or more workers, the 33 percent rule does not apply.

So what do you do if you believe your employer was covered by WARN but did not give sufficient notice of layoffs or plant closings? You are entitled to sue your employer in Federal Court.
An employer who violates the WARN provisions is liable to each employee for an amount equal to back pay and benefits for the period of the violation, up to 60 days. This may be reduced by the period of any notice that was given, and any voluntary payments that the employer made to the employee. You might also be able to get your attorneys’ fees paid.

So if you have been laid off or your facility has been closed and you believe your employer has not complied with the WARN law, speak with an employment law attorney to discuss your remedies.