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5 facts business owners should know about bank holiday entitlement

Melissa Jones  |  19 June, 2017

The majority of the UK have eight bank holidays a year. These are New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, May Day, Spring Bank Holiday, Late Summer, Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Scotland have some amends to this by discounting some and adding in others, whilst Northern Ireland include two extra public holidays.

As an employer, you should know the laws surrounding bank holidays and the entitlement for your full-time and part-time employees. Here are 5 facts that you should know about bank holiday entitlement:

  • 1. Employees do not have a statutory right to take bank holidays off of work. It is down to the employer whether or not employees receive bank holiday entitlement and this should be outlined in the employee’s contract of employment.
  • 2. Bank holiday days can be deducted from an employee's annual leave allowance (so they will have to take all bank holidays as paid leave) or employers can count bank holidays as additional holiday days. It is at the discretion of the employer if they choose to pay the employee for this and it should be stated in the employee’s contract of employment.
  • 3. An employee is not entitled to any extra pay for working on a bank holiday. Any right to extra pay should be outlined in the employee’s contract of employment.
  • 4. Part-time workers are entitled to the same terms as full-time workers when it comes to bank holiday entitlement, but on a pro-rata basis.
  • 5. If an employee is required to work on bank holidays as per the terms of their employment contract then the employee cannot refuse to work. However employers are obligated, under the Equality Act 2010, to protect workers against direct and indirect discrimination in the workplace and in wider society.

Upcoming bank holidays in England and Wales

28 August Monday Summer bank holiday
25 December Monday Christmas Day
26 December Tuesday Boxing Day
1 January Monday New Year’s Day
30 March Friday Good Friday
2 April Monday Easter Monday
7 May Monday Early May bank holiday
28 May Monday Spring bank holiday
27 August Monday Summer bank holiday
25 December Tuesday Christmas Day
26 December Wednesday Boxing Day


Part-time holiday calculator

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