Workers waiting six months for redundancy pay

WORKERS face waits of up to six months for redundancy payments as the number of claims lodged soars to 1,600 per week.

By the end of the first three months of 2009, the number of new claims lodged with the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, was equivalent to more than three-quarters of all claims lodged in 2007.

Junior Labour Affairs Minister Billy Kelleher said 19,742 claims had been lodged by the end of March, equal to almost half of all claims for 2008 (40,607).

When asked by Fine Gael TD Jim O’Keeffe what plans the Tánaiste and Enterprise Minister Mary Coughlan had to tackle the backlog, Junior Labour Affairs Minister Billy Kelleher said nine staff had already been redeployed within the department to the redundancy payments section, and plans are in place to re-assign a further 12.

However, Mr Kelleher said there was “a limit to the amount of people that we can reassign internally because other areas of my department are equally busy”, including those dealing with labour force activation issues and employment rights.

He said discussions were under way with the Department of Finance to see if there was scope for the assignment of additional staff, possibly from other departments.

Mr Kelleher said the increase in claims was “unprecedented” and he was “acutely aware of the difficulties which the inability to deliver an acceptable turnaround of redundancy rebate payments is giving rise to for both individual employees and the business community”.

A notice in yesterday’s national newspapers said the backlog for online claims now dates back to last November and manual claims back to October.

All phone enquiries in relation to redundancies are now being handled by the National Employment Rights Authority offices in Carlow — locall 1890 808090 or 1890 201615.


Helen O’Callaghan says we are the least strict in all of Europe.Praise over punishment: Irish parents least strict in Europe - study

Kya deLongchamps detects a hint of rebellion behind the ritual of afternoon tea.Vintage View: English tradition of afternoon tea won't exit with Brexit

Friends and Young Offenders actors Shane Casey and Dominic MacHale speak to Pat Fitzpatrick about struggling to make it but why they are not seeking out fame.‘I was down to a euro’ - The Young Offenders actors tell of struggle to make it in acting

Gerry Fitzgerald runs Bandon Books Plus in Riverview Shopping Centre, Bandon, Co Cork.We Sell Books: Turning over a new leaf from bank to bookshop in Bandon

More From The Irish Examiner