A SAVINGS expert has issued advice to both customers and employees of retail chain Arcadia.

The chain, which owns a range of brands ranging from Topshop and Topman to Burton and Dorothy Perkin announced last Friday that it is on the brink of going into administration, putting 13,000 jobs nationwide along with branches in Accrington, Burnley, Chorley and Preston in danger.

This has also been concerning for customers holding the various brands' gift vouchers.

Speaking about consumers rights, saving provider Raisin UK co-founder Kevin Mountford said: "If you have outstanding gift vouchers with Topshop for example, there is nothing to say that these have to be honoured if the stores go into administration.

"Once administrators are appointed, they do have the power to refuse store vouchers in an effort to save the company’s finances.

"If you bought a gift card for somebody, you may be able to claim it back through your credit card provider for example.

"However, this may only be viable if the sum was larger than £100.

"If you think you have outstanding gift cards or vouchers for an Arcadia store, seek to use it if you intend to as a potential liquidation of the companies could see you lose out."

The news has also been deeply concerning to those employed at Arcadia stores and Mr Mountford has also provided advice to people worried about redundancy.

His advice is to:

  • Read up on your rights, especially when it comes to redundancy pay and settlements. If you’re furloughed, your redundancy pay MUST be calculated on your usual wage, not your 80% furlough payments.
  • Check your notice period, being furloughed doesn’t effect the standard notice period you are required to work or be paid for.
  • Look at your existing debts. Do you have outstanding balances on credit cards that you could pay off now? It may be wise to settle these whilst you can be sure on your current income.
  • Look at your monthly outgoings, is there anything you could negotiate a payment holiday for? This may help whilst you plan your next move in the short-term.
  • Prepare your CV and think about your future career options. If it seems like your job role is definitely at risk, start to think about other options and reach out to people who may be able to assist in your job search.

The news has also had a knock on effect for troubled retailer Debenhams, which includes a number of concessions from Arcadia brands in its stores.

As a result of the Arcadia announcement JD Sports has now pulled out of rescue talks with Debenhams, which has branches in Blackburn and Preston, jeopardising yet more jobs.

To find out more, go to: https://www.raisin.co.uk/.