I have worked for my company for 15 years and one from full time (27 days + bank holiday = 35 days holidays) to part time after maternity leave. I work Tues, Weds & Thurs. For the past 3 years I have been taking 16 days holiday (excluding any bank holidays). They have now said that this is incorrect and to make it fair to everyone they have included bank holidays in my entitlement. This is how they have worked it out and I have no idea if it is correct: 35 days (basic 20 + 7 days extra for long service + 8 days bank holidays) pro rata is 21 days then they have taken 8 bank holiday from my entitlement, leaving me with 13 free days to book off. I don’t understand if they pro rata the 8 bank holidays into my entitlement to give me 21 days how they can then take a full 8 days from me. On the holiday sheet they have added the bank holidays and marked everyone off as a holiday, giving me 21 days and taking away 8. As most bank holidays fall on Mondays and I don’t work Mondays I have never considered any of this before. I would really love to know if this is correct.
Calculating & managing pro-rata holiday/bank holiday entitlement is always a tricky one, but some employers do seem to make it more complicated than it has to be! The bottom line is that your minimum statutory entitlement is 5.6 weeks, where a week is however many days or hours your normal working week would be. So if you work 3 days a week, you’re entitled to 5.6 x 3 = 16.8 days. Some employers would calculate your entitlement in hours, some would round it off to 17 days, but that is the minimum.
This includes bank holiday entitlement though, so as long as you take 16.8 days over the year, it shouldn’t matter which days of the week you work or don’t work. To ensure fairness, employers should give you your entitlement as a whole, not separate out the bank holidays & then have those dependent on your days of the week.
As you have additional entitlement from your employer, this should also be pro-rata’d. In total you should get 3/5 of what you would have if you were full-time. So if that would have been 35 days, you are entitled to 21 days overall, to be taken whenever you like – & if one of your working days falls on a bank holiday, then that day comes out of your 21.
It sounds like your employer has effectively ‘pre-booked’ all the bank holidays as days off for you, but that assumes that each one would be one of your working days, which clearly isn’t the case! I expect this is error/ignorance on their part rather than actively being unfair, so I suggest that you just explain the mistake to them so that they can allow you to take your 21 days whenever you want. (The alternative would be for you to have a day off in lieu if a bank holiday is not one of your working days, but that is just a more roundabout way of doing the same thing!).