NEW YORK — Jones Apparel Group Inc. said in a regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday that the company adopted a severance plan, effective May 31.

The plan is intended to provide severance benefits to its full-time corporate employees, as well as retail employees of Barneys Inc. and individuals employed by Jones Retail Corp. at the level of "district sales manager" or above, in the U.S. The plan provides eligible employees payment of certain severance benefits when they leave the company because of a reduction in staff, closing of a business unit or restructuring.

There are also separate provisions for different levels of executives, such as those below the level of vice president and individuals who are executive vice presidents and higher. In March, Jones said it was exploring strategic alternatives, including a sale of the company.

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