Wherever there are people, the unexpected can happen that affects the workplace. Long term sickness absence, maternity, paternity, adoption and shared parental leave, retirement, redundancies, resignations and many other issues that can and do crop up.
When people’s personal circumstances change overnight, it can make a typical three or four-year car lease seem daunting. Particularly when returning the car before the lease runs out would normally incur a penalty known as an early termination charge.
The last thing your organisation or your staff want is to pay these fees or hold on to cars that are no longer needed. Other lease deals and options would leave you or your employees with the bill but at Tusker we take a much more helpful approach to remove as much risk as possible from you.
Here, we explore how our Lifestyle Protection covers a wide range of changing circumstances and protects your organisation and employees from unwanted early termination fees.
What does our Lifestyle Protection include?
We offer cover for a range of lifestyle events outlined in the sections below. It’s worth noting that we don’t offer protection if an employee simply changes their mind. In this case, the contract and lease still stands and the employee is liable if they have signed up via salary sacrifice.
Comprehensive protection in cases of resignation, redundancy, retirement and TUPE
It’s not always possible to predict retirements and resignations. And organisations don’t always know when a restructure or a TUPE situation - when firms need to make people redundant or replicate employee benefits for staff joining their organisation through an acquisition or merger - could hit.
In these situations, our Lifestyle Protection scheme gives employers and employees the option to hand the car back three months after it has been delivered with no termination fee. Because these scenarios can mainly be planned for in advance, it should be easy to avoid paying any fees.
If the car was delivered less than three months before the individual leaves, your organisation is liable for the lease contract. However, it is possible to charge the early termination fee to the employee if the car was delivered less than three months before they leave.
Maternity, paternity, shared parental leave and adoption
Becoming a parent tends to come with a fairly long run-up which gives you time to plan. As long as a new car hasn’t been ordered within three months of the employee’s due date or adoption approval date, Tusker covers the lease cost for you up to a limit of £500 per month. This means employees can keep their car without having to worry about the cost of paying the lease while on parental leave with a reduced salary.
Due to employment law, most organisations feel they need to continue to provide car benefit at this exciting time in a parent’s life. While the employee’s pay is enhanced, salary sacrifice reductions can continue. When the employee is in receipt of statutory pay employers can no longer make deductions.
Tusker will continue to send monthly lease invoices which will need to be paid. However, when the employee returns to work, you’ll be able to claim the gross monthly salary sacrifice amount up to £500 per month for 12 months, significantly reducing your liability.
Long term sickness
Should an employee end up on long term sickness absence, Tusker will cover the early termination charge as long as the car has been delivered over three months before the start date of the sick leave.
Loss of licence on medical grounds, death in service, terminal illness, disablement or mental illness, loss of sight or limb
In these instances, Tusker will cover the early termination charge regardless of when the car lease was signed or the car delivered.
Loss of licence due to driving convictions, reduction in working hours, career breaks and dismissal
In these scenarios, the employee’s circumstances have changed due to reasons within their control making them liable for the early termination fee.
Although your organisation is liable for the lease, you would not have to pay the early termination fee if you can demonstrate you’ve attempted to collect the charge from the employee.
This can take place by reducing their final salary payment or, if that’s not sufficient, by raising and sending an invoice to the employee to cover the shortfall.
Our comprehensive Lifestyle Protection makes it practical for organisations of all sizes to implement a car benefit scheme. By working with Tusker, you’re covered for a range of lifestyle changes making your car benefit scheme perform even better for your organisation and your employees.
Of course, this article only provides a summary of the cover provided by our Lifestyle Protection. For full details, please contact your Account Development Manager.