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Holiday Guidance for Furloughed Employees

19 May 2020

Last week the government finally published guidance relating to how holiday entitlement and holiday pay are impacted when employees have been placed on Furlough Leave.  The guidance includes the following:

  • Workers who are on Furlough continue to accrue statutory holiday and additional contractual holiday provided under their employment contracts.
  • Employers can require workers to take holiday during Furlough leave and can cancel holidays provided the usual notice periods are complied with (note workers can agree to receive less notice).
  • If employers are to require workers to take holidays during Furlough, they must consider carefully any restrictions that the individual worker may be placed under i.e. a need to self-isolate or shield due to COVID19.
  • Workers should receive their “normal” pay during periods of Furlough Leave. What constitutes “normal” holiday pay is a complicated question at the best of times but employers will need to “top up” if their employees are only receiving 80% pay.


  • Where it has not been reasonably practicable for a worker to take some or all of the four weeks holiday they are entitled to under EU law due to the effects of COVID19, the untaken amount can be carried forward into the following two leave years.
  • Further clarity was also given in respect of the treatment of Bank Holidays.

If you require further advice or support with any other employment law matter, please do not hesitate to contact the team.