It has been reported that the EAT has ruled that the obligation to inform and consult for collective redundancies applies whenever an employer proposes 20 or more redundancies within a 90 day window, even if these 20 are spread across a number of separate workplaces or “establishments”.

The judgment in USDAW v WW Realisation 1 Ltd (in Liquidation) has not been published at the time of writing, but according to press releases from the union’s representatives, HHJ McMullen ruled that UK legislation requiring 20 or more proposed dismissals at one establishment was incompatible with EU law and should be read omitting the single establishment wording.

This represents a very significant change to the law which will need to be considered by any multi-site employers currently planning mass redundancies. The likelihood of appeal is as yet unknown.