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Keeping up to date

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Holidays during furlough

Posted on: November 13th, 2020 by Ginny Hallam

With most holiday years coming to an end and employees having had little time to take a genuine holiday, many employers are considering whether to force employees to take holiday during current furlough.

Employees are able to take holiday while furloughed, but here’s a few things to consider.

  1. Employees should not be placed on furlough for a period simply because they are on holiday for that period.
  2. Working Time Regulations (WTR) require employees to be paid their normal rate of holiday pay for any holiday taken during furlough, so you’ll need to top up over and above the 80% government contribution.
  3. Legally, you’re able to require employees to take holiday by giving twice as much notice of their need to take holiday as the period of holiday you’re asking them to take. So, if you want them to take five days’ holiday you’ll need to give them 10 working days’ notice (unless their contract allows you to give less notice).
  4. Holidays are an opportunity to rest, recharge, and a health and safety requirement under the WTR, so if you’re requiring employees to take holiday whilst on furlough, ensure that the time out is genuinely time off.

Get in touch if you need to discuss your approach to holidays during furlough with our team.


This update is accurate on the date it was sent (16 November 2020), but may be subject to change which may or may not be notified to you. This update is not to be taken as advice and you should seek advice if anything contained within affects you or your business.