Leo Varadkar assures HMV staff over redundancy pay

Workers at HMV who lost their jobs when the retail chain went into liquidation will have their redundancy payments promptly dealt with, according to Minister for Social Protection, Leo Varadkar.

The minister looked to reassure the workers after HMV’s presence in Ireland came to an end with the closure of remaining outlets in Limerick, Dundrum, Henry St, and Liffey Valley.

Mr Varadkar said eligible staff would be entitled to payments from the State under the Redundancy and Insolvency Payments schemes.

The aim of the scheme is to compensate workers for the loss of their jobs by reason of redundancy, with an eligible employee entitled to two weeks statutory redundancy payment for every year of service, plus a bonus week. Compensation is based on the worker’s length of reckonable service and reckonable weekly remuneration, subject to a ceiling of €600 per week.

In order to qualify, an employee must have at least two years continuous service, be in insurable employment, aged 16 or over, and have been made redundant as a result of a genuine redundancy situation.

Other pay-related entitlements, including holiday pay, sick pay and payment in lieu of minimum notice, are covered by the Insolvency Payments Scheme.

Leo Varadkar
Leo Varadkar

All applications under that scheme must be made by a liquidator on behalf of the insolvent company.

In a statement issued yesterday, Mr Varadkar said the Department of Social Protection would deal promptly with Redundancy and Insolvency applications in respect of the former employees of HMV when they are received from the liquidator.

In January 2013, HMV announced it was closing its 16 locations, and making 300 staff redundant after a receiver was appointed.

However, eight months later, its new owner, Hilco, re-opened stores in Dublin’s Henry St, Liffey Valley Shopping Centre and Dundrum town centre, as well as Limerick’s Crescent shopping centre.

As well as buying HMV’s retail outlets in Ireland and Britain, Hilco also bought DVD chain Xtravision.

In January of this year, Hilco placed Xtravision into provisional liquidation with the loss of 580 jobs.

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