You’ve not been paying attention!
We have come across several companies in the past months who don’t seem to have been paying attention when it comes to annual holiday entitlement. We are working closely with one client who has not paid the correct holiday for their workers since it changed in 2009.
Just as a reminder, it used to be 20 days including bank holidays. Since 2009 it has been 28 days including bank holidays.
Now there is an onus on the employees to take their holidays and keep up to date with their entitlements, but even more responsibility lands at the feet of the employer, where ignorance is really no defence.
One of their employees, who is leaving anyway, pointed out that she was owed holiday. So we now have uncovered the situation that all are owed a few days holiday and several of the workers are entitled to as much as 15 days holiday this year on top of their existing 28 days.
The problem in this situation is that you are not allowed to pay out or carry forward statutory holiday from one year to the next. It is use it or lose it. So a cruel and heartless HR would say “tough, you should have known and taken it!”. However we are only cruel and heartless when our clients want us to be (!), and this client is very concerned about their staff.
So we can’t pay them out, but if they were allowed to decide when to take holidays, they could easily be off for the whole of December. So the compromise that we have agreed is that we will tell the staff when to take their holiday (the right of every employer), so that the work still gets done.
Make sure that you have updated all of your documents and payroll know what to pay to whom, otherwise you could face a large holiday bill yourself!