Annual Leave Update
Published On:Tuesday, January 26, 2021
We’ve had a lot of queries about annual leave recently and thought it would be helpful to issue a brief update covering the two main issues we have been asked about. This is probably because for many workers, the holiday year finishes at the end of March.
- Although the Annual Leave Regulations were amended last year to allow holidays to be carried forward when it was not been reasonably practicable for employees to take their holidays due to COVID 19, this DOES NOT require employers to let workers carry leave forward in every situation. You should not assume that your employer will automatically allow any unused leave to be taken during the following year. The default position remains “use it or lose it”.
- If the employer wants to ask workers to take annual leave at a particular time – even if this is during a period of lockdown – they are able to do so. The right in law is for workers to be able to take their annual leave, not necessarily to be able to take it at a time that is convenient to them. If an employer wants to compel an individual to take annual leave they will need to give at least double the amount of notice compared to the amount of leave they want the individual to take i.e. to force somebody to take 1 week’s leave the employer would need to give at least 2 weeks’ notice. The employer will also need to pay you at your normal rate of pay for any holidays taken.
Our advice, as always, is for employers and staff to talk to each other and agree between themselves when annual leave needs to be taken. If you have specific questions about annual leave or any other employment relations issue please contact us using the usual channels.