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Are we too small to WARN?

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Q. We are considering laying off approximately 20 of our 83 employees. If we move forward with this plan, is there any requirement that we provide advance notice to the employees who will be subjected to layoff?

A. No, because of the size of your organization and the number of employees likely to be impacted by this decision, you are not subject to the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act or any state law.

Under WARN, a covered entity is any employer with 100 or more employees of any type who, in the aggregate, work a minimum of 4,000 hours per week exclusive of overtime.

In addition to the fact that you are not a covered employer, WARN applies only to “plant closings” or “mass layoffs,” which by definition must affect a minimum of 50 employees. While Minnesota has a plant closing law, it does not require employers to provide any advance notice prior to termination. 

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