HR Blog: Are staff entitled to the extra bank holiday in 2022?

Have the darker days and winter weather got staff thinking about their next summer holiday?

It’s not unusual for some employees to want to get their leave requests in early, especially to tail end the bank holidays for an extended break if they can.

In fact, some may already be planning how to spend the additional bank holiday next year for the Queen’s jubilee, although perhaps prematurely as it is not an automatic day off for everyone.

Whether or not you need to permit time off for bank holidays, and specifically the additional bank holiday in 2022, will depend on the terms laid out in your employment contracts.

Whilst at first glance it may seem straightforward, the wording you have used is important and will determine who is and isn’t entitled to the extra day off.

When is the extra bank holiday in 2022?

The additional bank holiday in 2022 is on Friday 3rd June. It’s been announced to mark the Queen’s jubilee year, celebrating 70 years on the throne. It applies in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

It’s not the only change to bank holidays next year that employers need to be aware of. The spring bank holiday, which is usually at the end of May, will be on Thursday 2nd June instead, creating a four-day weekend for some, but not all.

Working out entitlements for the extra bank holiday

It’s likely that you already have a process in place for bank holidays, depending on whether or not your business needs to be staffed on these days. However, this should be reviewed to factor in the additional bank holiday next year. Not sure where to start? Here are some helpful pointers:

  • Staff are entitled to the extra bank holiday if their contract states – 20 days holiday plus bank holidays.
  • Staff in England and Wales are not entitled to the extra bank holiday if their contract states – 20 days holiday plus 8 bank holidays (listed).
  • Staff in Scotland are not entitled to the extra bank holiday if their contract states – 20 days holiday plus 9 bank holidays (listed).
  • Staff are not entitled to the extra bank holiday if their contract states – 28 days or 5.6 weeks which includes bank holidays.

If you have a variation of this wording, we suggest that you seek professional HR advice to determine how the extra bank holiday impacts your business.

Although not all employees will have an automatic entitlement to the extra day, it’s worth noting that some employers will acknowledge it regardless as a well-being or good-will gesture.

It’s important that staff use their holiday allowance to recover and feel rejuvenated, especially after the past couple of years. However, it’s also important that your business is adequately staffed and so any decision concerning an extra day requires planning.

If you have employees working varying hours, remember that part-time workers should not be treated less favourably than their full-time colleagues concerning bank holiday entitlements.

Pay and TOIL for those working bank holidays

There is no legal obligation to offer additional pay to staff working on a bank holiday. However, it can be an attractive way to get the cover you need.

If working bank holidays is mandatory in your business the terms should be outlined in your employment contracts.

Often employers will offer increased rates plus time off in lieu (TOIL). Time and a half, plus a day off in lieu can make working Bank holidays attractive to some.

Reviewing your employee contracts

Employment law changes and so it’s vital that employment contracts are reviewed periodically to remain up to date.

If you’d like professional advice on employee contracts for your business, or you have questions about staffing your business over bank holidays, give us a call.