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Compliance Assistance Resources

elaws - employment laws assistance for workers and small businesses

- WARN Advisor

Is My Event a Covered Event Under WARN?

To help you determine whether or not your event is a covered event under WARN, the Advisor will ask you a series of questions.

Before answering these questions, it is important to understand what is meant by employment loss. An employment loss applies to full-time employees only and covers:

  • An employment termination, other than a discharge for cause, voluntary departure or retirement;
  • A layoff exceeding six months; or
  • A reduction in an employee's hours of work of more than 50 percent in each month of any six-month period

Sometimes, a layoff which was announced to be for or is expected to be for less than 6 months is extended beyond 6 months. In that case, your employer may be liable for having failed to give 60 days notice at the beginning of the layoff. If the extension of the layoff is for the same reason or cause as the original reason or cause for the layoff, an employer is liable to have given notice 60 days before the beginning of the layoff. If the extension beyond 6 months occurs for some reason that was unforeseeable at the time the layoff was originally announced (including unforeseeable changes in prices or costs), then the employer must give notice of the extension at the time the need for extension is known but do not have to give notice for the entire period.

Exceptions -

  • An employer does not need to give notice when permanently replacing a person who is an economic striker as defined under the National Labor Relations Act.
  • If an employer offers to transfer a worker to another location, the following rules apply:
    • An employee who is offered a transfer to a different employment site within a reasonable commuting distance does not experience an employment loss whether the employee accepts the offer or not.
    • An employee who accepts a transfer outside a reasonable commuting distance within 30 days after it is offered or within 30 days of the plant closing or mass layoff, which ever is later, does not experience an employment loss.
    • In both cases, the transfer offer must be made before the closing or layoff, there must be no more than a six-month break in employment and the new job must not be deemed a constructive discharge.
    • These transfer exceptions from the "employment loss" definition apply only if the closing or layoff results from the relocation or consolidation of part or all of the employer's business.