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What is the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act?

Sudden changes in the workforce may become necessary for your company operating in Miami, Florida. According to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, your business may be subject to the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act if you must end employment for a large number of workers. This act requires 60 days advance notice for those affected.

For example, perhaps you have a company with more than 1,000 employees, and one of your warehouses has around 150 employed there. You are planning a couple of layoffs that will span over a period of 90 days. Combined, the layoffs will affect at least 33 percent of your warehouse’s staff who work more than 20 hours a week, and who have worked more than six of the last 12 months there at that facility.

Under the WARN Act, you would need to provide those workers with some type of written notice that informs them of the upcoming layoff 60 days before it occurs. The same is true if you are planning just one layoff that will eliminate jobs for 33 percent of your warehouse’s staff under the same conditions. There is a caveat to this, though. If you have two separate layoffs during the 90 days, but they were caused by different factors, the number of employees affected by each layoff would not be combined. So, each layoff would have to meet the required percentage individually.

If you cannot meet these conditions and provide a notice of fewer than 60 days, you may have to pay a civil penalty, as well as the wages each employee lost during that time period. This information is provided to give you a brief overview of the WARN Act, and should not be considered legal advice.

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