Christmas Holidays & Staff Leave

With Christmas fast approaching, we thought it timely to share some of our tips and advice for managing this holiday period and staff leave requests.

There are different rules for different types of leave so understanding your obligations as an employer makes it easier to work out leave entitlements and approve leave – leading to happier, more productive employees.

Here is a link to a great website to get all the tips and a full understanding of your legal requirements.

At a glance all employees are covered by the Holidays Act (2003). Basically, that Act requires you to keep accurate records of all employee’s hours, what they have been paid for these hours, entitled leave and taken leave. There are also other leave entitlements, such as sick, bereavement & domestic violence leave.

 

So how does Christmas & New Year affect me and my team?

Public Holidays

When a public holiday falls on a day your employee would usually work, they’re entitled to a paid day off, no matter how long they’ve been working for you. If they agree to work anyway, you must:

  • pay them at least time and a half, or
  • give them another paid day off later (a day in lieu)

If the public holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday (Boxing Day, 26 Dec, and 2 Jan 2021 both fall on Saturdays this year) then employees who don’t normally work will have the following Monday as their paid public holiday, which is known as Mondayisation. However, if your employees work weekends as well as Mondays, they don’t get both days paid as public holidays, just the one.

It is also important to understand what your employees are entitled to, especially those who work irregular or part-time hours, and how to calculate their leave payments and the options you have on how you calculate these. Given there are a few variations we suggest you search the above website for direction.

The last thing you want is a costly dispute with an employee.

 

Staying Informed

As a business, and an employer, I suggest you bookmark the website www.business.govt.nz. It not only gives you guidelines on Hiring and Managing people it also has some great information, along with tools & resources, on business, how to grow, doing business online and so on. Their monthly newsletter also keeps you up to date with the latest tips, advice and news.

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