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Can Employers Cancel Employee Holiday?

Reasons to choose Wilson Browne

As the easing of lockdown began more and more people decided to book a much needed holiday abroad.

Whilst on holiday some people found themselves having to quarantine on their return, leaving employer’s potentially short of staff where the employee was unable to work from home.

What are the options for an employer?

An employer has the right to cancel employee’s holiday if they are unable to be available to attend work after their holiday as long as they give the employee the appropriate statutory notice.  The notice that needs to be given must be the same length of the holiday for example if an employee is intending to take two weeks holiday as long as the employer gives the employee two weeks’ notice then they can cancel the employees holiday.

Certain people will be exempt from having to quarantine and the full list of people can be found here.

If an employee is not exempt from quarantine and they are unable to work from home then they may be able to take additional holiday to allow for the quarantine period, however statutory sick pay is not available to anyone who cannot attend work for quarantine purposes.

It would be advisable for employer’s to have a plan with regards to holidays and make it clear to staff the options available to them should they have to quarantine on their return.  Employees should be aware that employers do have a right to cancel holiday if an employee is unable to fulfil their obligation to be ready to come back to work after their holiday.

Should you require any advice regarding employee holidays, please get in contact with our Employment specialists on 0800 088 6004.