The Federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act was enacted in 1988 and became effective in 1989.  Only employers that meet certain requirements are obligated to comply with WARN, but those who are should be aware of the rules.  In this economic climate companies are making layoffs left and right and if they don't comply with the law they might be subjecting themselves to costly litigation.

What WARN provides is protection to workers by requiring employers to provide 60 days notice of certain happenings which would cause a worker to lose his or her job.  For example certain plant closings and covered mass layoffs.   A covered mass layoff is one which will result in an employment loss during any 30-day period for 500 or more employees, or for 50-499 employees if they make up at least 33% of the employer's active workforce.

There are of course exceptions to the rules and qualifications that employers and employees must meet to be covered by WARN.  For more information about WARN and other layoff policies please contact a labor and employment lawyer in your area or visit Lawinfo for free legal resources.