Leave entitlement & Public Holiday’s refresher

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Most New Zealanders will take annual leave during summer. There are also a few public holidays coming up. But what leave are employees entitled to? Here’s a refresher ahead of the holiday season for you.

All employees, regardless of part time or full time work, fixed term or ‘casual’, are entitled to at least:

  • four weeks of paid annual holidays after each twelve months of continuous employment for their employer
  • up to eleven public holidays each year (if they are days they would otherwise work)
  • access to sick leave and bereavement leave after six months of current continuous employment with the same employer

An employer must let the employee know about their leave entitlements under the Holidays Act 2003 and should include this in the employment agreement.

Employees get a paid day off on public holidays if it’s an otherwise working day for them. If they work on a public holiday they are paid time and a half, and may get an alternative day off. Some public holidays are Mondayised (or Tuesdayised) if they fall on a Saturday or Sunday if those days were not days that an employee would otherwise work on.

If a business has a close-down period that includes public holidays, for example, over the Christmas and New Year period, then the employee is entitled to a paid public holiday if they would have normally worked on that day if the closedown was not in effect.

More information and examples can be found here.

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