Retrenchment is a sad reality for too many of us. If you have been retrenched, you need to spend some time reviewing your finances and planning for the months ahead. Here’s how. 

Check your retrenchment package

Your retrenchment package should include:

Severance pay of at least one week’s pay for each year you were employed Leave pay for any leave not taken

Overtime pay if any is due

Notice pay if you do not work your notice period. For example, if your contract states that you have a two-week notice period, but you are asked to leave your job immediately after being retrenched

Remember that your employment contract may state that you will be paid more than the minimum severance package or a pro rata portion of a bonus. Always check your contract to ensure that you are paid all you are due.

Register for UIF

This will give you some money to cover living and other expenses while you are unemployed.Register with the Department of Labour as soon as possible. 

Tell your creditors you have been retrenched 

You may be able to claim on a credit life policy that will pay off some debts such as a hire purchase agreement. Your creditors may also offer a payment holiday or reduce the instalment on your debt.

Revise your budget 

Work out how much money you can spend each month and allocate this to essential expenses such as food, rent and school fees. Remember to allocate some funds to help you look for new work, for example transport costs.

Don’t forget the side hustle! Look for ways to earn extra income to supplement your UIF pay-out and retrenchment package. This has the added benefit of keeping you busy and positive about your retrenchment. 

Downsize your home or move in with family 

Consider moving to a smaller home or moving in with close friends or family to save on living expenses such as rent and electricity. 

Get references and update your CV

Make sure you have references from your previous employers with up to date contact details and update or create your CV.