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Taking unpaid leave

You can take unpaid leave if your employer agrees to it. The agreement should be recorded in writing.

Unpaid leave for annual closedowns

If your employer has an annual closedown and you do not have enough annual holidays, you may have to take unpaid leave.

Annual closedowns — Employment New Zealand

Taking more than a week of unpaid leave

If you take more than a week of unpaid leave over the year:

  • your anniversary date for entitlement to annual holidays moves out by the amount of unpaid leave you take, or
  • you can agree with your employer that your anniversary date for annual holidays entitlement will not change — in this case, your employer reduces the number of weeks used to calculate your average weekly earnings for annual holiday pay by the number of weeks and part weeks, greater than 1 week, that you were on leave without pay.

For more information and example scenarios visit the Employment New Zealand website:

Utility links and page information

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