Holiday Entitlement & Coronavirus

holiday entitlement & coronavirus

When we were all busy planning our holidays at the beginning of the year, little did we know those plans were most likely going to be wiped from the calendar! Who would have know we would have had to think about holiday entitlement and coronavirus. What about all the bank holidays during lockdown? Can managers make you take holiday while you’re furloughed? We have collated some key info for you to read in one handy blog! All information comes directly from the website and ACAS. Links at the bottom of this page.

Please note: This guidance should not be treated as legal advice. Employers and workers should always check individual contracts and if necessary, seek independent legal advice.

Bank holiday entitlement & coronavirusholiday entitlement & coronavirus

  • There is no statutory right to bank holidays unless stipulated in the workers contract. If a furloughed worker would usually have the bank holiday as annual leave, there are two options. Either:
    • the bank holiday is taken as annual leave during their furlough
    • the bank holiday is then deferred until a later date.
  • For example, if an employee was on furlough during the May bank holiday, and did not take the day as annual leave, the worker will be entitled to the day of leave at any other point in the holiday year.

Holiday while on furlough

  • Workers who have been placed on furlough continue to accrue the statutory and contractual holiday entitlement.
  • An employer has the right to both require their workers to take holiday and also cancel holiday if they give enough notice.
  • Those on furlough can still take holiday without disrupting their furlough. The usual notice requirements and the ability to refuse a leave request still applies.
  • An employer can require a worker to take holiday while on furlough, but they need to consider any restrictions a worker is under such as self-isolating, or being unwell, as this will prevent the worker from resting, relaxing and enjoying leisure time.

Carrying over holiday

  • According to the website, people who have not been able to take all of their statutory annual leave entitlement due to COVID-19 will now be able to carry it over into the next 2 entitlement & coronavirus
  • Some companies already permit you to take a certain number of days into the next holiday year, but the government have now made it official that you can carry leave further, across the next 2 years.
  • Where it is not ‘reasonably practicable’ for a worker to take some or all of the holiday which they are entitled to due to the Coronavirus, the new amendment to Working Time Regulations, will allow up to 4 weeks of unused leave to be carried into the next 2 holiday years.
  • Examples of where it is not reasonably practicable would be:
    • If a worker is self-isolating or too sick to take holiday before the end of their leave year
    • If a worker has had to continue working and could not take paid holiday.

If you would like to read up on this further, here are three links covering holiday entitlement and coronavirus:

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