Managing Christmas Leave

2017 has raced along and soon it will be Christmas. With that in mind, it is time to consider the issues around summer leave.

A range of staff challenges appear over the Christmas and New Year holidays.

We will have the usual requests for leave, the need to have relief staff  and the questions around pay that these always bring with them.  What better time to remind everyone what the regulations are around holidays and pay.

Most importantly, staff must apply for leave; but an application for leave and approval of leave is not the same thing.  If it really does not suit the employer, they can decline a leave request.  Obviously the employer must try to be as fair and reasonable as they can, but they still have to run a business. Sometimes that means that leave is not convenient.

Another staff member may already have been approved for leave. Chances are then that the employee would be declined leave as both cannot be away.  The employer and employee will usually sit down and work out something between them, but at the end of the day, it is the employers call on whether leave is approved or not.

A hint for employees here; it always helps your employer to plan ahead if you give them as much notice of your leave as possible.  If you want New Years off then let them know now; not on 27th December.

If you as an employee work a statutory day (Christmas, Boxing Day, January 1st & 2nd or the transferable days) then you are entitled to be paid at time and a half. As the law now requires you to keep timesheets, this is now a simple and straight forward exercise. Record the hours worked and get paid at time and a half. The employee does also get another day in lieu, which they can take at another time – with the employer’s agreement.

With holidays often comes the need to find relief staff for everything from the occasional milking, to finding staff to cover a holiday period.

These staff all require an employment agreement – even casual staff.

These staff do not get a day in lieu for a stat day, as it is not a regular working day for that employee. However, they do get paid time and a half  as a genuine casual employee. They also get paid holiday pay at 8% on top of what they earn as they go or at their finish date if it was a short term contract.

Need any other employment help, call John at CooperAitken on 07 889 8838. Creating freedom in your business.



John Brosnan, Human Resources
CooperAitken Accountants
021 508 128

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