Does your holiday year run from 1st April – 31st March? If so, the information below is important to you as an employer:
The way in which the 2018 Easter break falls means that in England and Wales the Easter bank holidays will straddle both March and April. In 2018 Good Friday falls on 30th March and Easter Monday falls on 2nd April. The following year Good Friday is on 19th April 2019 whilst Easter Monday is on 22nd April 2019.
Therefore, if your holiday year runs from April – March employees would appear to lose out. This is because there is no Good Friday bank holiday within a holiday year running from 1st April 2018 to 31st March 2019.
The statutory 28-day entitlement is a legal minimum and as the employer you cannot negotiate out of it, other than by an agreement with the workforce to carry forward up to eight days holiday into the following year. If you are an employer in this position it is advised that you top up the employee’s holiday entitlement for the leave year running 1st April 2018 – 31st March 2019 as this will ensure the employee receives their 28-day statutory entitlement. This situation will occur again but not until 2024!
Tracy Edmondson, HR advisor at Summ.it, says: “Giving an employee who works a five-day week fewer than 28 days annual leave is a breach of the Working Time Regulations 1998, regardless of the number of bank holidays in a particular holiday year. Failure to honour a contractual clause providing for 20 days plus bank holidays could result in an employer being in breach of contract, resulting in a HR dispute at best and a claim at worst!”
HR advisor & summ.it Partner, Jayne Sanderson-Brown, adds: “This is a real pain for employers who have a holiday year starting 1st April as it essentially means that if they a) only allocate the statutory minimum 5.6 weeks (28 days for a 5 day worker) holiday per year and b) include all bank holidays in this allocation, that they will have to give their employees an extra days holiday in the holiday year ending March 2018. It reverses the year after however with 9 bank holidays falling within the year… If anyone needs any support with this, don’t hesitate to contact us”
If the above applies to you, contact your HR Advisor at summ.it who will furnish you with a standard template letter for you to send to your employees.