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Employment Law Myths Debunked #5. Employees have the right to have bank holidays off work and to be paid for them

Not necessarily

Whilst they are widely observed by employers throughout the UK, there is no piece of employment legislation that gives employees an automatic right to take bank holidays off work. The only way in which such a right would arise is if the employee’s contract of employment expressly gives them this right or if, as a matter of custom and practice, the employee has a reasonable expectation that they will have that day off work.

Whether or not employees are also entitled to be paid on these days will also depend on their contract of employment and whether such days make up their statutory entitlement to have the equivalent of 5.6 weeks’ annual leave per holiday year.

To avoid any confusion, where employees are expected to work bank holidays, it is sensible for employers to make this clear at the outset of the employment relationship by writing it into an employee’s contract of employment.

If you would like more information regarding employment law speak to one of our solicitors on 0113 220 6270. Find out more about our employment services here.

About the Author

Annie Gray


Primarily acting for employers and senior executives, Annie advise PLC's, private limited companies,…

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