No Image Available

Annie Hayes



Read more about Annie Hayes

HR Tip: Carrying over holidays


These questions are being answered by Learn HR, a market leader in the provision of HR and payroll training and nationally-recognised professional qualifications.

Q: “A few of our employees have told us that they were not able to take all their holiday last year and want to take it this summer. Are they entitled to do this?”

A: The four weeks of holiday provided by the Working Time Regulations certainly should not be carried over to the following year. Indeed you could be found wanting under the Health and Safety at Work Act if any of those people had an accident and argued that they were not given opportunity to take their holiday. There is nothing to stop you agreeing with employees to carry over holidays in excess of the four weeks.

However you can now see the problem. Last year you could not fit in, say, five weeks of holiday so this year you have to fit in six weeks. Ideally set up a holiday rota and record sheet before the beginning of the year. Monitor it regularly and insist that people book holidays within stated time zones so that they do not finish up with a long entitlement at the very end of the year when it is impracticable or inconvenient to take time off. If you insist that holidays may be neither carried over to the following year nor paid in lieu you are likely to find that most people fit in their full entitlement. Put the screws on the remaining few. Including yourself.

View all our HR tips:

No Image Available
Annie Hayes


Read more from Annie Hayes

Get the latest from HRZone

Subscribe to expert insights on how to create a better workplace for both your business and its people.


Thank you.