Ford Works Cologne
Notice of termination or termination agreement received?
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Have you received a notice of termination or a termination agreement from Ford-Werke Cologne as part of the downsizing and mass layoffs?
Law firm for labor law in Kerpen, Cologne and Witten
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Even though a warning had already been issued to the workforce at Ford's Cologne plant by IG-Metall, few expected the scale of the job cuts at the Cologne site. 3200 jobs are now to be cut due to the expansion of electromobility and the associated restructuring and relocation of production to the USA. But to what extent are such mass layoffs legal? What can an employee of Ford-Werke Köln who has received a notice of termination or a termination agreement as a result of these measures do about it?
In the following article, we will go into detail about the individual procedural steps relevant to you with regard to the correct and profitable handling of a termination and an associated action for protection against dismissal. We will also go into the scenario of a termination agreement in more detail and list what you should pay attention to before you sign such an agreement, which claims you have, which may still need to be negotiated and what you should not sign under any circumstances or what you should not waive.
The action for protection against dismissal
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - action for unfair dismissal
The basic thing that an employee of Ford-Werke Cologne should know is that the preclusion period states that after receiving notice of termination, an action for protection against dismissal must be filed with the competent labor court within three weeks, otherwise the employee's claims expire. After this three-week period, the employee's claim expires and the associated termination is deemed effective.
Therefore, if you have received a notice of termination or a termination agreement from Ford-Werke Cologne, you lose no time in contacting a lawyer for labor law, getting advice in order to initiate appropriate measures through them. This procedure is indispensable for the correct legal action. You will find further details on the topic of termination, action for protection against dismissal, termination for operational reasons, the topic of termination agreement, severance pay, protection against dismissal and the proceedings for protection against dismissal in the following articles from us:
What are the formal requirements for such mass dismissals?
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Conditions for collective redundancies
First of all, the employer must comply with its associated duty of notification in accordance with Section 17 of the German Dismissal Protection Act (Kündigungsschutzgesetz, KSchG). This includes, in detail, informing the Federal Employment Agency about the planned dismissals or layoffs / job cuts.
In addition, the works council must be informed by the employer about the scope of the jobs to be cut with regard to the reasons, number of occupational groups, periods of the planned terminations, criteria for the selection of the employees to be terminated and the associated social selection, as well as the calculation of the associated severance payments. Furthermore, the employer is obliged to forward the works council's statement on the planned dismissals to the Federal Employment Agency. If this is not done as described above or if the employer does not comply with these procedural guidelines, the dismissals are invalid.
Reasons for termination - is there protection against termination?
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Reasons for Termination & Protection against Dismissal
Apart from the prerequisites already described, according to § 1 Paragraph 2 KschG The employer must of course also state the reasons for the terminations, whether they are due to personal reasons, behavioral reasons or operational reasons. The personnel restructuring planned by Ford-Werke Köln suggests that these are terminations for operational reasons. However, it should be noted here that even in these cases only the employees of Ford-Werke Köln enjoy protection against dismissal, to whom the German Dismissal Protection Act applies. In order to check this in a binding and legally secure manner, you should consult a lawyer for labor law.
But to what extent is an employer allowed to eliminate or terminate so many jobs, as indicated by corporate restructuring?
What is the difference between the reasons for termination?
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Different reasons for termination
Termination for operational reasons occurs when a job is no longer required for operational reasons, such as operational restructuring or relocation of production areas. Such a termination is only legal in Germany if the company can prove that the job is actually no longer needed and that the termination could not be avoided by other measures.
A termination for behavioral reasons exists if the employee's behavior constitutes an important reason for the termination. An example of this would be if an employee is regularly late for work or absent without excuse. Such a termination can be pronounced if the employee's misconduct is not just a one-time incident but a permanent violation of the duties under the employment contract.
Termination for personal reasons occurs when the employee is personally responsible for the termination of the employment relationship. An example of this would be if an employee can no longer perform his or her job due to drug abuse or alcoholism.
With regard to an action for protection against dismissal, the enforceability of the action differs depending on the type of dismissal. For a termination for operational reasons, there are certain legal regulations that the company must fulfill in order for the termination to be legal. For a termination for behavioral or personal reasons, on the other hand, the company only has to prove that the employee's misconduct constitutes an important reason for the termination.
The entrepreneurial decision to restructure
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Definition of entrepreneurial decision
A business decision is a decision made by a business owner or management to manage and control the business. This can include decisions about production, finance, human resources, and marketing. Legally, a company usually has the freedom to make such decisions as long as they are within the applicable law and regulations of the country.
A company's freedom with respect to business decisions generally includes the ability to make decisions that serve the company, regardless of the impact on employees or other parties. For example, a company can make decisions that result in the elimination of jobs if it is necessary for the business.
With regard to social selection in the workplace, there are regulations in Germany and other countries that prohibit companies from making decisions based on certain characteristics such as age, gender, ethnic origin or religion. Companies must comply with these regulations when making decisions that have an impact on employment, such as dismissals or hiring.
In Germany, there are statutory regulations that provide protection against dismissal for employees in the event of mass redundancies. These regulations apply if a company plans to lay off at least 30 employees within 90 days. If a company wants to change its location, this may constitute a mass layoff that falls under these regulations.
This means that the employer must take certain steps before carrying out the redundancies, such as calling a works meeting, drawing up a social plan and informing and consulting the employee representatives. In addition, there is also an obligation to notify the employment office.
However, there are also exceptions to this protection against dismissal, for example if the change of location is unavoidable for economic reasons and other measures, such as operational restructuring, have been exhausted.
However, it is important to note that there may also be other regulations and agreements between employees and employers that provide additional protection against dismissal for employees when a business changes location. It would therefore be advisable to contact an employment lawyer for more information on this.
The permanent loss of the job
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Continued Employment
A company, in this case Ford-Werke Cologne, must generally be able to demonstrate that the job is no longer needed in order to justify termination. In Germany, there are legal regulations that stipulate that a termination for operational reasons is only legal if the job is actually no longer needed.
In the event of a dispute, the labor court will examine whether the termination is justified for operational reasons. To this end, it will generally examine whether the company has shown that the job is actually no longer needed and whether the termination could not have been avoided by another measure, such as operational restructuring.
However, there are also cases in which a company is convicted of termination even if it has shown that the job is no longer needed. An example of this is when an employee enjoys special protection against dismissal because of his severe disability or because of his age, and the company cannot prove that there is no other way to fill the employee's job elsewhere.
It is important to note that there may also be other labor regulations and agreements that provide additional protection against dismissal for employees, and it would therefore be advisable to consult a specialist labor lawyer for more information on this.
The social selection
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - What does social selection mean in the event of termination?
Social selection is an important component of termination law, particularly in the case of mass layoffs. It serves to minimize the impact of a termination on the employees affected. In the case of a termination at Ford-Werke Köln, social selection would serve to select the employees who, based on their individual circumstances, are best able to find new work or who are least affected by a termination.
If social selection has not been carried out or has been carried out inadequately, this may be relevant for the employee concerned at the level of labor law. A dismissal that is made without social selection or with inadequate social selection may be invalid under certain circumstances. In this case, the employee has the option of filing an action for protection against dismissal and the labor court will review whether the dismissal is legal.
It may therefore make sense to entrust the matter to an attorney for employment law to ensure that the requirements of employment law are complied with and to ensure that the employee's rights are safeguarded. An attorney can help review the facts under employment law and, if necessary, file an action for protection against dismissal.
On what does it depend whether the employee of Ford-Werke Köln receives a severance payment?
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Conditions for severance pay
Whether an employee of Ford-Werke Köln receives severance pay in the event of termination depends on the individual circumstances of the case. As a rule, severance payments are made if the termination is made by the employer for operational reasons and the employee is not at fault.
The amount of severance pay depends on various factors, such as age, length of employment, qualifications, industry and labor market. There is no standard severance payment; each severance payment is individual.
A severance payment is subject to wage tax, as well as social security contributions.
It is possible for an employee of Ford-Werke Köln to receive a severance payment out of court if the termination by the employer is for operational reasons and an agreement can be reached between the employer and the employee. However, it is advisable to seek advice from an attorney for labor law in order to be able to assess the individual situation and the possibilities of a severance agreement.
Costs of representation by a lawyer?
Ford-Werke Köln Termination - Costs of representation
The cost of representation by an attorney for employment law in an employment protection lawsuit can vary greatly and depends on various factors, such as the scope of the case, the experience of the attorney and the geographical location. In general, however, it can be assumed that the costs for an attorney are higher compared to the costs of a lawsuit without an attorney.
As a rule, there is no difference in the costs whether you settle out of court or in court.
Whether a legal expenses insurance policy covers the costs of a lawyer in a dismissal protection lawsuit depends on the conditions of the insurance policy. It makes sense to ask your legal expenses insurance in advance whether coverage exists in the event of a dismissal protection lawsuit and what conditions must be met for this.