What is Re-Employment?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 09 October 2019
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Re-employment is a status in which an individual who was formerly employed is allowed to return for a second round of employment. In most cases, this second round will require the development of a new employee contract that replaces the original. Most businesses and other organizations that hire employees have specific guidelines that apply to the re-employment process, with local and national regulations regarding employment eligibility helping to shape the form and scope of those processes.

The term is applied in a number of different scenarios, often based on local custom. In some industries, re-employment occurs when an individual who was laid off from his or her original position is called back into active service by the employer. When this is the case, the duration of the layoff period is usually inconsequential. Even if the employee is laid off for a period of five years, the recall to activity is still seen as a re-employment rather than a new hire.

More often, re-employment involves hiring an individual who was once an employee, but left the organization for some reason. The reason for the original dissolution of the employment relationship may have been due to the employee resigning, or due to the company taking steps to end the term of employment by dismissing the employee because of his or her actions on the job. An employee may also be dismissed due to cutbacks in the labor force that call for the elimination of his or her job position.


In order to determine re-employment eligibility, an employer will often look at the previous work record of the individual, including the reasons why that individual left the business originally. In situations where the work record indicates a favorable term of service, and the employee left on good terms, the chances for re-employment are usually quite good. Should the previous work record be considered less than average, leading to the termination of employment by the employer, the possibilities of re-employment are considerable less.

Depending on local laws and the employment policies and procedures, there is a very good chance that the process of re-employment will require that the employee review and sign a new employment contract. The rehired employee is also likely to be asked to submit new identification for his or her employee file, as well as new tax forms that provide the employer with the data necessary to calculate the withholding properly. There is also usually a period in which the rehired employee is caught up on any changes in policy or procedure that may apply since the previous employment. Some companies may require that the employee attend orientation sessions along with any first-time employees who are joining the business.


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