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Holiday rights

January 17th, 2010

Who is entitled to this?

The right to a minimum period of paid holiday is available both to employees and “workers” who are not employees in the strict sense of the word.

A worker is someone who works personally for someone who is more like a boss than a client or customer of a business. Many self employed individuals are totally dependent on one person or company who provides them with work full time, this is typical in the construction industry. Often they will have the status of “worker.”

Agency staff may be employees of the agency or, more commonly will have the status of “worker.”

How much paid holiday are they entitled to?

Employees and workers are entitled to 5.6 weeks paid holiday per year. This includes “bank holidays.” Employees who work 5 days per week Monday to Friday, will normally have bank holidays off which is equivalent to 1.6 weeks so in addition they have 4 weeks holiday.

Employees who work more than 5 days per week, however, are only entitled to 28 days holiday.

When must the holiday be taken?

An employer is entitled to require all holiday to be taken within the “holiday year.” The holiday year is usually specified by the employer (often the calendar year). If this is impossible because the employee has been off sick or the employer refuses a holiday request, it may be carried forward.

If no holiday year is specified by the employer then it runs from the date the employment started (or 1st October 1998 if employment began before this date).


ACAS guidance



Please note that the information on this page is intended to be a guideline and is therefore a summary of the law only and not a complete guide. Before taking any action based on this information you are strongly advised to take legal advice. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained on this page is up to date and accurate, no guarantee can be given to this effect.

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