Question to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Mr Richard Bruton, TD)
To ask the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation if time spent on public holidays is required to be included when calculating the number of days to which an employee is entitled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. – Jerry Buttimer.
For WRITTEN answer on Tuesday, 8th July, 2014.
An employee’s entitlement to annual leave is set out in section 19 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997.
Subject to the exceptions/clarifications provided for in section 19, an employee acquires a legal right to 4 weeks annual leave if he or she works at least 1,365 hours in the year, or one-third of a working week for each month in the leave year in which he or she works at least 117 hours, or 8 per cent of the hours he or she works in a leave year (but subject to a maximum of 4 working weeks).
An employee’s entitlements regarding public holidays are set out in Section 21 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997 and the method of calculation of pay for both annual leave and public holidays is set out in the Organisation of Working Time (Determination of Pay for Holidays) Regulations 1997 – Statutory Instrument No. 475 of 1997.
Under section 21 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997, full-time employees have immediate entitlement to benefit for public holidays, and part-time employees have entitlement to benefit when they have worked a total of 40 hours in the previous 5 weeks.
When a person works on a public holiday he or she is entitled to be paid for the day in accordance with the agreed rates. In addition, he or she also has an entitlement to benefit for the public holiday. This can be different for each public holiday and each employee depending on the individual’s work pattern.
If the business is closed on the public holiday and an employee would normally be due to work then the employee gets his or her normal day’s pay.
If the business is open and an employee works, he or she is entitled to a paid day off within a month of that day or an additional day of annual leave or paid time off or an additional day’s pay.
If the public holiday falls on a day on which the employee does not normally work, then the employee is entitled to one fifth of his/her normal weekly wage.
Under section 22(2) of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997, time off granted to an employee for annual leave or a public holiday must be regarded as time worked by the employee.
If required, further information on employment rights can be obtained from the National Employment Rights Authority’s dedicated information service – Workplace Relations Customer Service – which provides information to employers and employees on all aspects of employment rights. This service operates from 9.30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays and can be contacted on Lo-Call 1890 808090. Workplace Relations Customer Service also provides extensive information on employment rights on its website www.workplacerelations.ie.