There are some changes to public holidays in 2022. An extra public holiday has been announced for 3rd June 2022 to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. The normal spring bank holiday that takes place on the last Monday of May has been moved to 2nd June 2022 giving people a 4-day weekend.
For many employers, they will simply give everyone an additional paid day off but it’s good to know whether this is something that you have to do or whether it’s something over which you have a choice. In this blog post we’ll cover the topic of whether employees have the right to an extra paid day off in 2022.
The questions answered in this post are:
1. What’s the legal position for the extra bank holiday in 2022?
Firstly, contrary to popular belief, no employee has the legal right to paid time off for bank holidays. Holiday entitlement is covered by two things – first is the legal requirement and then there is a contractual requirement.
From a legal perspective, employees are entitled to 5.6 weeks of paid leave per year. For a full time employee, this translates to 28 days. In England, there are 8 public holidays so, for many employers they take the approach of giving people 20 days (4 weeks) of annual leave which they can use when they wish and then using the remaining 8 days to give people paid time off for public holidays.
Legally, the creation of an extra bank holiday in 2022 does not give employees a legal right to an extra paid day off. The answer to the question of whether employees have the right to an extra paid day off in 2022 comes from the contractual position.
2. What’s the contractual position for the extra bank holiday in 2022?
Employers will typically have wording in their contracts around holiday entitlement. You will see wording such as “You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus 8 additional days for public holiday” or “You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus normal public holidays”. It’s the wording of these clauses that will determine whether individuals have a right to an extra paid day off in 2022.
These clauses may be worded in many different ways and it’s unlikely that we can cover all variations but the common ones, and their impact on the 2022 question are set out below:
|Employment Contract Wording||Entitlement to an extra day off in 2022?|
|“You are entitled to 28 days annual leave which includes entitlement for public holidays.”||No entitlement|
The contract states the number of days off the individual is entitled to. In 2022, 9 days of the holiday allocation will be used for public holidays and 19 days will be available for the individual to use as they wish. You should inform employees that you are allocating one day of their annual leave to the additional public holiday.
|“You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus 8 days for public holidays.”||No entitlement|
It’s clear that there are 8 days for public holidays. In this scenario, if you are not planning on giving employees an extra day off, you should notify them that one day of their holiday is being allocated to the additional public holiday.
|“You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus statutory public holidays”||Most likely yes|
In 2022 the additional public holiday is being granted under statute so it’s probable that the employee would be entitled to the extra day.
|“You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Early Spring Bank Holiday, Late Spring Bank Holiday, Summer Bank Holiday, Christmas Day & Boxing Day”||No entitlement|
The list of bank holidays to which the employee is entitled are listed.
|“You are entitled to 20 days annual leave plus the normal public holidays observed in England.”||No entitlement|
The additional day is not a normal public holiday.
3. What should you, as an employer, do?
Whilst it’s good to know what you can and can’t do in relation to the additional public holiday, we’d encourage you to give careful consideration to allowing people the extra day off. It will be a morale boost and asking people to take the day out of their annual leave entitlement could cause a great deal of resentment.
If you are thinking about not give people the extra day as paid leave then it would be a good idea to have someone take a look at the exact wording of your annual leave clause in your contract and any annual leave policy you have to make sure that your employees definitely are not entitled to the extra day. We’d be able to help with this so do contact us if you’d like us to take a look at your documentation.