Taking time off
You and your employer have to agree when you'll take time off.
You have the right to:
- take at least 2 weeks of your leave at once, if you want to
- take leave whenever you want, as long as your employer agrees to it.
Your employer can:
- tell you when you have to take time off, as long as they give you 2 weeks' notice
- restrict when you can take time off, eg at certain busy periods.
Taking leave in advance
If you don't have any annual leave and you want to take time off, your employer might agree to let you take paid leave in advance. When you reach your next anniversary, you'll get your leave entitlement, minus what you've already taken.
You may also be able to take unpaid leave.
If your employer has an annual closedown (eg they close the office over Christmas), you have to take time off even if you don't have any annual leave.
Your employer has to give you 14 days' notice of the closedown. You'll have to:
- take annual leave over the closedown, or
- take unpaid leave if you don't have any leave available.
If the closedown period includes any public holidays, you'll be paid for them.
If you're in your first year of working for your employer
If your leave doesn't build up and you haven't reached your first anniversary yet, you still have to take time off in a closedown.
Your employer has 4 options. They can:
- pay you 8% of your gross salary earned to date over the period of the closedown
- let you take paid annual leave in advance (you both have to agree to this)
- make you take unpaid leave, or
- change the date you receive your annual leave allowance to before the closedown begins (they can only do this if the closedown happens every year on the same date).