Holiday entitlement for part time staff UK

Holiday entitlement in the UK for staff who work part time or do not work regular hours.

Holiday entitlement is an important benefit for all workers and is covered by employment law in the UK with the aim of ensuring that everyone receives adequate time off to rest and recharge. However, people who work on a casual basis or whose hours vary, or those who work term time only or seasonally, calculating holiday entitlement can be a bit more complex due to their working patterns. In this blog post, we will explore how holiday entitlement is calculated for those who work part time or who do not work regular hours.  

Calculating holiday for those staff who do not work regular hours or have working patterns that vary throughout the year is challenging.  In the UK, all workers are entitled to a minimum of 5.6 weeks of paid leave per year, bank holidays might be included in this paid holiday. This will be determined by reference to contractual terms. For full-time employees working a regular schedule, this equates to 28 days of holiday entitlement. However, for irregular and part-year staff, calculating holiday entitlement can become quite a headache.

The government website does provide a calculator, making it relatively easy to work out entitlements for part time workers. The calculation is simple – for those who work for 1,2,3 or 4 days a week, the entitlement will be 1/5th, 2/5th. 3/5th or 4/5th of the annual entitlement of 28 days. 

A day’s pay is a normal day’s pay for the particular worker and depends on the number of hours worked.  So, an employee who works three days a week for five hours a day will receive 3/5th x 28 days = 16.8 days annual entitlement, paid at 5 hours per day.  What has to be remembered however, is that if the annual entitlement covers public holidays, and a public holiday falls on a day when the worker normally works, this has to be booked as annual leave.

The government has introduced reforms to simplify holiday entitlement and holiday pay the new law for irregular hours workers and part-year workers taking effect on 1 April 2024.

If an irregular hours worker or part-year worker’s leave year begins on or before 31 March 2024, the new rules do not apply until their next leave year. They must get 5.6 weeks’ paid holiday as a minimum.

For leave years beginning on or after 1 April 2024, there is a new accrual method for irregular hour workers and part-year workers. Holiday entitlement for these workers will be calculated as 12.07% of actual hours worked in a pay period.

If a worker gets the statutory minimum holiday entitlement, the most holiday they can accrue in a year is 28 days. Should an employer give workers more that the statutory minimum holiday entitlement, then the percentage will need to be adjusted. 

It is essential for employers to accurately calculate holiday entitlement to ensure that they receive their statutory minimum leave and to avoid costly and time-consuming disputes. We suggest reviewing your holiday policy and practices to ensure that they are compliant with UK employment law and tailored to the unique working patterns of your workers.

In addition to statutory holiday entitlement, if you offer contractual annual leave entitlements then you must ensure that these apply to all staff including those who do not have a regular working pattern in order to avoid any potential discrimination claims.

Being a proactive employer in this respect will help you to create a positive working environment and foster loyalty and engagement among your workforce and will demonstrate your commitment to providing fair and equitable treatment to all, regardless of their working arrangements.

Contact us today to learn more about Bradfield HR Advisory Services and Bradfield HR Outsourcing Services or give us a call at 0207 977 9200. Alternatively, follow us on LinkedIn and Facebook to stay up-to-date

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