How to deal with losing your job

By Faeza
07 December 2016

ONCE you find a job and sign the contract as a permanent employee of a company, it’s easy to forget that anything can happen and you might even find yourself retrenched.


There are various reasons you might get retrenched. Retrenchment usually occurs when a business is affected by tough economic times, not making a profit or similar factors that directly affect the company’s financial position negatively. The company will in turn take action to reduce its workforce to ease the financial crisis. “It’s important to consult with a financial planner to discuss and plan for possible retrenchment and growing your retirement capital to assist in the event of retrenchment,” says Vusi Khathi, AVBOB

provincial manager, KwaZulu-Natal.


At times, retrenchment happens when you least expect it, leaving you and your family without an income. Vusi warns that it is important for you to familiarise yourself with your rights in terms of what retrenchment benefits you are entitled to, if there are any. “An employee is entitled to one week’s salary for every completed year of service with the employer. Notice pay may also be applicable and you get paid in full for the outstanding leave days,” Vusi assures. Other companies may give you a provident fund and experts warn against its misuse once you receive the lump sum.

Being retrenched can be hard on anyone, but there is a way to get through it This money should assist not only you, but your family while you are looking for another job.


Vusi says AVBOB has covered its clients for such incidents in life. “We provide a retrenchment benefit to policy holders, which will cover the premiums for a period of six months, if the premium payer (main life insured) is retrenched after they have had the policy for at least 24 months. Once an application for the retrenchment benefit has been approved, all the beneficiaries will remain covered for a maximum of six months, while AVBOB pays the monthly premiums for six months on behalf of the premium payer,” he explains. In the event that you find another job, Vusi assures that they will continue to pay the premiums until the full six months are covered and the client will be expected to start paying again from the seventh month.


If you think you were unfairly retrenched, the law can be on your side. Vusi says as an unfairly retrenched employee, you have the right to take the company you were working for to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) where your case will be heard by people not affected nor involved. “As an employee being retrenched you should be issued a retrenchment letter and an updated UI-19 unemployment insurance form from your employer. That is if the retrenchment was not voluntary."