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What to do if you are laid off due to Restructuring or Bankruptcy Filing

Vuk Vujasinovic

Vuk Vujasinovic


When companies shift their employment strategies, it directly affects their employees. Sometimes, when they make changes, they are forced to lay off some of their employees, and if they filed for bankruptcy, they might have to terminate all of their employees.

As a loyal employee for your company, it is discouraging when you are laid off. Regardless of the reason why you were laid off, you deserve proper compensation and care. If you are not receiving the appropriate attention and payment, you will need to work with an experienced team of attorneys to ensure that your rights are protected.

What happens if you are laid off from your position

If you get laid off from your position, you must remain focused and calm. Take the transition step-by-step to ensure you receive your final paycheck, benefits and pension, unemployment compensation, and severance pay.

If you have been laid off from your position, you are entitled to different benefits than if you were fired. Employees are typically laid off when a company is restructuring or downsizing. The company needs to make layoffs as a result of their business conditions and financial obligations. Companies may downsize if there is a recession, industry decline, a merger, or competition.

When you are laid off, you will need to ensure that you take the necessary steps to ensure that you are leaving the company with what you deserve.

  1. Determine what your severance package is.
  2. Collect your final paycheck.
  3. Check that your company has your correct mailing address.
  4. Confirm eligibility for employee benefits, such as health insurance.
  5. Review your pension plan or 401(k).
  6. File for unemployment benefits
  7. Get references lined up for potential new opportunities.
  8. Begin searching for a new job.

If you have been laid off, it is stressful and usually unexpected. You may have a lot of questions that you need answers for. Depending on the industry that you work in, your rights may differ. If your former employer is not setting you up for a successful exit, you need someone to help you fight for your rights. An experienced attorney will be able to assist you if you have been denied your rights.

If you are injured and are laid off from a company, you deserve proper compensation. A company cannot terminate your employment without ensuring that you are cared for properly.

What happens if you are laid off from your position due to your employer filing for Bankruptcy

When a company files a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, they inform the court that they are dissolving their company. The company is no longer able to meet its financial obligations and has acquired too much debt to remain open. All of their employees will be laid off and the company will cease to exist in an effort to pay off debt. The company employees who are owed wages will become creditors of the bankrupt company and receive a partial amount of their assets.

Chapter 11 bankruptcy typically allows the company to continue operating as they explore options to reduce debt and operating expenses. The company will likely retain a decent amount of employees to ensure that operations remain ongoing. Still, they will take a closer look at the financial situation that the company is involved in. They will likely lay off several employees as a result of cost-cutting measures.

In August of 2020, the world’s largest offshore rig owner, Valaris, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They are focusing on restructuring their company and are laying off a large number of their employees. Unfortunately, that means that loyal employees and injured workers will be left in the dust. Injured workers will need to seek coverage under the Jones Act. Employees and injured workers need to work with a knowledgeable attorney to ensure their rights are being protected.

In difficult circumstances, do not sign anything. You do not have to sign any documents that your company provides you. There may be complicated language in the documents stating that the company does not have to provide compensation or benefits. Contact an attorney who will advise you on how to navigate your circumstances.

How we can help

At VB Attorneys, we stand up for your rights. We fight for the rights of the employees because employers won’t. We will not allow your rights to be infringed upon. We have experience helping clients who have been laid off, and we can help you too. Contact us to explore your options and have a team working with you to fight for your rights.


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