My regular readers (or those who have delved into the archives) may recall an earlier post about my recent employment insecurity. The concern was imminent redundancies were afoot, and although we are an organisation of over 5,000, my “doom and gloom” tendencies took over and I assumed the worst.
I began preparing for redundancy as if it were going to happen the very next month. This is not a bad idea even if you are not at risk; Fully identifying your financial position, and preparing a plan in advance of such a disaster can mitigate its affects. Identify all your actual and potential sources of income. What are your obligations in terms of mortgages and other debt payments? Do you have savings? How quickly could you obtain government assistance, and what kind would it be?
I am in the fortunate position of living at home with my parents again, following my marriage breakup. The government, if I were made involuntarily redundant, would pay me £64.30 a week as Job Seeker’s Allowance, or £257.20 a month. As it stands, this would be of no material use whatsoever. My loan repayment alone is £413 a month, and that doesn’t even begin to take into account essentials such as food. The loan is insured against such an event, so it wouldn’t be a total disaster for me – but what about you?
My goal was to be debt free by New Years Day 2010. The employment panic set in around August, which gave 4 months until my target – and I was not convinced, in the slightest (courtesy of my “doom and gloom” attitude!) that I would make it. So, I began a frenzied attack on my already pared down budget, and began working myself into the ground grabbing all overtime possible.
How am I doing? … tired.
I have taken a step back now, and calculated my legal position. By virtue of UK employment law I am entitled to a weeks pay (a statutory minimum of £380 a week, if no higher is paid at the discretion of the employer), for every full year of employment. I am also entitled to a minimum of a weeks notice for every full year employed, or pay in lieu.
The interesting point from this little mental arithmetic is that I would be due either 4 weeks full pay and 4 weeks statutory minimum pay (if not more), or 8 weeks notice and 8 weeks statutory minimum pay (again, if not more) depending on my choice to work the notice period or not.
Bottom line, if I had bothered to look back in August, is my target would have been met no matter what. What my little journey to exhaustion lane has done though, is bring forward my debt freedom date somewhat, and I know that I can go into next year without any major concerns of sudden instability.
I have also read the Head Cheese’s budget report for the next financial year, and my department appears unaffected. So it appears things are good until April 2011 if nothing else!
Tags: Debt, Employment
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