With a global pandemic affecting our day to day lives including our jobs

With a global pandemic affecting our day to day lives including our jobs, it is very important to know your rights and obligations. The predictions are that many businesses will have to cut down on their staff in order to keep themselves afloat. Now more than ever, taking legal advice can make a significant difference in the outcome of this very unprecedented situation we are all facing.

Sudbury and surrounding areas have a significant presence of high street business as well as factory/production industry. Bates Wells & Braithwaite have been at the heart of Sudbury’s legal sector for over 100 years and in that time have helped the local area’s businesses and residents navigate the aftermath of war, recession and even a previous pandemic. It is something we will endeavour to continue to do now, even in these very uncertain times.

The longer restrictions remain in place the more likely the question of redundancies will arise. Even with the Job retention scheme, the question of whether and sadly in some cases, when, a redundancy situation will be required will have to be addressed and making redundancies of staff that have been furloughed may not be completely straightforward. Regrettably, the Government’s Guidance Notes do not offer much understanding or support on this point, other than to state employers can still make furloughed employees redundant.

If you are an employee you must remember that your employer has to follow a fair process even if the reason for your dismissal is redundancy. It is also prudent to remember that redundancy dismissals may still be seen as unfair, if  the employer did not properly consider alternatives, including retaining the employee on furlough. Our dedicated team will use their best endeavours to achieve a satisfactory outcome for you, should you find yourself in a position where your employer is planning to make you redundant.

If you are an employer we are here to ensure that correct selection process and procedures are followed to minimise your risks and exposure to any claims. Please do get in touch if you have any queries on 01787 880440.

Written by Monika Sargeant – Bates Wells & Braithwaite – 01787 880440

Monika Sargeant

Monika joined Bates Wells & Braithwaite in 2020 and is a specialist employment and company commercial solicitor.

Monika has a number of years of litigation experience gained while employed for a Regional Firm. She assisted many Clients both employee and employer in achieving a satisfactory outcome in contentious and non-contentious matters including but not limited to partnership disputes, unfair and wrongful dismissal claims and discrimination claims.

In the commercial aspect of her case load over the years Monika has assisted many businesses with sales and purchases of both asset only and shares transactions.

Monika lives locally with her family and is very much devoted to the local community. She enjoys skiing and travelling (especially Portugal).


Please note that Bates Wells & Braithwaite are still operating during the Covid-19 crisis and will be throughout.


During the current lockdown we are operating a closed door policy - only those with appointments will be permitted access to the reception area.  If you are dropping off documents please use the trays in our "service entrance" (the next door along the road, it has a notice on the door) - for anything else, including providing ID please telephone reception for assistance.


Please note that in line with Government guidance, all visitors will be required to wear a face mask (unless you are exempt) 


Reception will be manned during our opening hours of 9:00am - 1:00pm and from 2:00pm – 5:30pm Monday to Friday


  • All meetings will still be strictly by appointment only and where possible we ask that you arrange appointments by contacting us by telephone or email in order to assist social distancing measures.
  • Only essential appointments will be dealt with face to face - please discuss this with the person dealing with your work
  • We ask that you please do not arrive early or late to an appointment as we have to strictly control the numbers of people entering the building at any one time.
  • On entry, you will be required to wear a mask, obey social distancing rules and to use the hand sanitiser provided prior to approaching reception.
  • To assist with social distancing, you may find you are asked to wait on the pavement outside the office, or that the front door is locked in order to control the number of people in reception at any one time.

We have a visual walk-through you can access by clicking here to outline all the rules and precautions we have had to put in place


If you are not yet ready to attend our offices we will still offer telephone appointments where possible.


Please call us on 01787 880440 to discuss existing or new instructions.


Thank you

The Directors of Bates Wells & Braithwaite

Last updated: 11/01/2021