Your situation after redundancy
If you've been made redundant, and you haven't got another job to go to, you'll need to think about your money situation and finding another job.
If you get redundancy pay, you might need independent financial advice to work out how best to use the money.
For more information about redundancy pay and independent financial advisers, see Redundancy pay.
You might be able to get cash help from the government or local authority (benefits). For example, you might get Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA), Housing Benefit, Council Tax Benefit, free school meals for your children and help with NHS costs. Benefits depend on your circumstances. You should claim benefits as soon as you can - you can make a claim on your first day of unemployment.
To claim JSA in England, Wales or Scotland, telephone Jobcentre Plus on 0800 055 6688 or claim online at: www.direct.gov.uk.
In Northern Ireland, you need to claim in person, by telephone or by letter.
If you get redundancy pay when you are made redundant, this might affect your right to claim benefits.
For more information about benefits, go to our benefits section.
If you are getting Working Tax Credit (WTC) and your job ends because of redundancy, you will no longer be entitled to WTC. Some people can carry on getting WTC for four more weeks after their job ends. If you lose your job, you might be entitled to more Child Tax Credit. You must inform HM Revenue and Customs about the change in your circumstances.
For more information about Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit, see Benefits and tax credits for people in work.
Your State Retirement Pension and occupational pension won't be affected by your redundancy. You'll still get your pension when you reach retirement age or when your employment contract says you will.
For more information about pensions, see Benefits for people over sixty.
You might need advice about any debts you have and how to budget to avoid future debt. If you have bought something on credit, check whether you've got a payment protection insurance policy that will pay off the credit if you're made redundant.
If you have a mortgage, you might get help to pay off part of your mortgage. You may be able to get help through a private or public sector mortgage rescue scheme.
For more information about debts, see Help with debt.
In England and Wales, there are a number of factsheets about debt.
In Scotland, there are also a number of factsheets about debt.
If you'd like some unbiased money advice to help you cope with a drop in income following redundancy, try the Money Advice Service financial health check. The questions take just a few minutes to answer and are completely confidential. At the end you'll have a better understanding of what shape your finances are in.
The health check also gives you a financial action plan and ideas on how to make the most of your money. For more information, go to www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk.
You can obtain further advice on career and learning opportunities from the Direct Gov website at www.direct.gov.uk.
In Northern Ireland you can obtain further advice on careers and learning opportunities from the Careers NI website www.careersserviceni.com.
The Welsh Government has launched a new scheme to help people who've been recently made redundant or who are under a notice of redundancy. The scheme is called ReAct and it can help you pay for training and associated costs including:
- training to help you gain new skills (up to £2,500. From 1 April 2011 the maximum will be £1,500)
- help with the costs of special equipment required for training
- money towards the cost of materials required for training
- help with childcare costs.
For more information about who can apply for help, go to the Welsh Government website at www.wales.gov.uk or phone 01792 765888 .
Adapt, based on the ReAct scheme is a source of help for public sector workers who face redundancy. It provides training, advice and guidance. Both employees and employers can call the free helpline 0800 100 900 .
If you live in Scotland and you are being made redundant, you can get help under a Scottish Government initiative called Partnership Action for Continuing Employment, or PACE for short.
PACE is being delivered by Skills Development Scotland. Help available includes help with finding work, applying for jobs, finding training and careers advice.
There is a helpline number on 0808 100 1855 , or visit the website at: www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk.