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I am leaving my current position and working 4 weeks' notice. Last day of employment will be 22nd March.

Holiday year runs 1st Jan -> 31st Dec

Notice handed in 25th Feb

I have been told I will have accrued 3.5 days' holiday which equates to 2 full months (21 days total allowance). Should I be entitled to more, or are they within their rights to only pay me holidays for full months worked?

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  • Is the 3.5 days calculation based on the period of time from 1st Jan to 22nd of March? – P. Hopkinson Mar 11 at 10:06
  • I get 21 days plus bank holidays. I did (21 / 12) x 2(full months) to get 3.5. Or at least, that is what they have done to calculate holidays accrued. – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 10:11
  • I'm wondering if the UK location tag may be important to this question. In the US, there isn't a standard, employers can define the calculation how they want - and doing it in "whole" (meaning: rounded down) pay periods, or months, as your employer is doing, isn't uncommon. – dwizum Mar 11 at 12:26
  • @dwizum Absolutely - statutory leave accrual is well defined in the UK as opposed the to the more free form nature of it in the states. – motosubatsu Mar 11 at 14:42
  • Are you working full time or part hours contract? 21 days is a bit low for full time contract... – Smock Mar 11 at 15:19
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I don't know if your calculation is correct, but you are entitled to any leave accruing during a notice period. (Think about it; what if you were on 6 months notice?). Whether they pay for full months (normal) or calculate to the day will depend upon your employment contract.

Also, although you didn't specifically ask, YOU get to determine whether you take the leave, exchange it for £s, or just forgo it. There are frequently stories on here of people being bullied out of it by aggressive management.

  • YOU get to determine whether you take the leave, exchange it for £s, or just forgo it. Not entirely. Any leave request during notice is treated like any other instance of leave and can be refused on valid business grounds but either way, you're still right - he's owed leave either in lieu of using it or during his notice period, and they can't refuse both options – iamgory Mar 12 at 14:38
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Theoretically yes, you will accrue holiday on the last month and you are entitled to it.

I have noticed before that HR seems to leave this out of the calculations sometimes as they calculate your holiday when you hand in your notice to work out whether your notice period is enough or not.

Depends on how much you can be bothered to push HR to calculate this on your leaving date rather than your notice handing date.

You are a fully fledged employee until your last day at work.

  • Well if legally they should be calculating it on my leaving date, that seems to be a worthwhile conversation to have. – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 10:06
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Yes.

As an absolute minimum you will accrue leave entitlement at the statutory rate, which based on the dates you gave (and assuming you work 5 days a week) means you will have accrued 6.3 days of leave by the time you finish, your contract can mean you get more than this but not less.

They can use bank holidays for some of those (again depending on contract) but the 3.5 days is an utter nonsense.

  • Can you elaborate on how you get 6.3 days? – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 9:56
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    @R_Avery_17 I used the Govt. accrual calculator (on the link) – motosubatsu Mar 11 at 9:57
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    @R_Avery_17 from GOV site: There is a minimum right to paid holiday, but your employer may offer more than this. The main things you should know about holiday rights are: you are entitled to a minimum of 5.6 weeks paid annual leave (28 days for someone working five days a week) ... bank and public holidays can be included in your minimum entitlement. – fireshark519 Mar 11 at 10:10
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    @R_Avery_17 yep.. you'll owe them 0.7 days worth. – motosubatsu Mar 11 at 10:13
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    I will use the link provided, as i fully expect to be underpaid when leaving. – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 10:14
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They're doubly wrong. The only way I can come up with a number near 3.5 is to do both of two wrong things :

  • Not giving you holiday for the last month (approximately) that you're working, and
  • Regarding 1 January 2019 as [your] holiday and not [national] holiday

I usually go for Hanlon's razor - it's more likely to be a mistake than intentional malice and, even if it isn't, approaching it that way is likely to give you the best outcome. I would phrase it as a question, and send them the link in motosubatsu's answer.

Thanks for your advice about my remaining holiday entitlement. I'm a little confused as [that link] suggests a different number. Can you let me know how this was calculated?

If you need another link about accruing leave in the notice period, refer them to paragraphs 87, 88 and 89 of the Employment Rights Act 1996. But you might find that if they have to put their justification in writing, they'll have something of an epiphany.

  • Appreciate the answer, confirms that 3.5 days is not correct. Thanks – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 11:42
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In the UK it is usually pro-rata to the date of leaving.

Working this out by day of the year: 22nd March is 81st day of year, so 81/365 * 21 = 4.66 days maybe rounded to 4.5 days

Working this out by week of the year: 22nd March is the 12th week of the year so 12/52 * 21 = 4.85 which may round to 5 days depending on how generous they are.

Although they may work leave out by calculating number of work days in the year. They could work out the total number of work days, and divide the 21 up for each, and then figure out how many work days you've had up to the 22nd March, which wouldn't be a common practice I've ever seen.

It's also unusual to have bank holidays taken out of your leave in the UK - more common to make you take 'closed days', eg between Christmas and New Year though - but we've not had any bank holidays except for 1st Jan 2019.

How are they working our your pay for March? Is it pro-rata 22/31 * Monthly salary?

Update: Are you working full time or part hours contract? 21 days is a bit low for full time contract...

  • Yes, I believe pro-rata for March, but am awaiting written confirmation. Full-time, 5 days a week. 21 + BH, which is one day over statutory – R_Avery_17 Mar 11 at 15:20
  • Ahhh - 'An employer can choose to include bank holidays as part of a worker’s statutory annual leave.' If you work out pro-rata with BH included you get 81/365*29=6.5 minus one for 1st Jan = 5.5, which is still more than 3.5 ! I would definitely ask them if they could show you how they worked out their figure as you keep working it out differently and can't reconcile the two. – Smock Mar 11 at 15:49

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