Nortel employee severance payments frozen by bankruptcy

Last November, Network World reported the layoff of 1,300 Nortel employees. This week, the Globe and Mail is reporting that Nortel CEO Mike Zafirovksi has confirmed that Nortel's severance payments still owed to those 1,300 laid-off employees have been frozen by the Nortel bankruptcy filing, and will be applied against Nortel's debts. The Globe added that legal experts said a Nortel employee severance payment will typically rank behind other debts in a bankruptcy proceeding, which means it is likely Nortel will have insufficient cash to pay most of the owed compensation. A laid off Nortel employee was quoted in the article stating: "I was told today after the bankruptcy announcement that I would not receive one thin dime of severance. I'm not too happy with my ex-employer right now," said Eric Fawcett, a U.S. employee, who was given notice on Dec. 4, 2008 that his job would be eliminated after 17 years of employment with Nortel. The contact number for laid off Nortel employees and pensioners: 1-800-676-4636 EMEA Call: 00800-8008-9009 (select option #7 for 'Express Routing Code,' then enter: 4531#)

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