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My company pays full pay for a whole year of maternity leave, but they state that due to this, holidays are not accrued during the maternity period. The returner starts to accrue holiday when they return from maternity leave. This generally leaves mothers with insufficient leave to cover fixed shutdowns which are later in the year, thus pay is deducted. Can they legally do this?
There are a few things you can look at here. Firstly, what does your contract say? It’s all very well having a maternity policy, but what contractually does it say in the annual leave or maternity section of the contract?
I would also speak to HR on this and get their stance. The second thing the non-accrual of holiday days could be possible, but I would say the bank holidays would need to be given/paid for as a minimum. You should also be able to use all holiday before you go on maternity leave.
I would also calculate how much, if any, extra you would be getting pay wise to agree to this. For example – work out how much pay you would get from, say, statutory maternity pay (approximately £6k) then how much you would get for, say, 20 days (statutory minimum) holiday.
Another option would be to contact ACAS.