Christmas and New Year Public Holiday Entitlements 2016/17

26 October 2016

The time has arrived to start preparing for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays and ensuring you are aware of your employee’s public holiday entitlements, particularly as Christmas Day and New Year’s Day fall on a Sunday meaning they will be subject to Tuesdayisation.

Below is a brief overview of the entitlements for these holidays, if you require further information please contact Clubs New Zealand on 0800 4 CLUBS or visit the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website at  www.employment.govt.nz

Under the Holidays Act 2003 Employees are entitled to four public holidays over the Christmas and New Year period.  For the 2016/17 Christmas and New Year Holidays, Christmas Day and New Year's Day fall on a Sunday which means they will be subject to Tuesdayisation (where an employee does not usually work on a Sunday).  Boxing Day and the day after New Year’s Day fall on a Monday and will be observed on the day that they fall.

Christmas Day and New Year's Day

This year Christmas Day (25th December 2016) and New Year’s Day (1st January 2017) fall on a Sunday, if that day is not otherwise a working day for an employee, then special rules apply and the public holiday will be treated as falling on the following Tuesday (Tuesday 27th December and Monday 3rd January) for that employee.  For employees that would otherwise work on a Sunday this is the day they will observe the public holiday, Mondayisation and Tuesdayisation only occurs for employees where the Public Holiday (in this case Sunday) is not otherwise a working day.

When working out public holiday entitlements over Christmas and New Year's it is important to remember that an employee is only entitled to observe the public holiday once regardless of whether they work on both the Sunday and the Tuesday.  An employee cannot be entitled to more than four public holidays over the Christmas and New Year period, regardless of their work pattern.

Clubs New Zealand has produced a flow chart which can be downloaded using the link below, which will help you to determine an employee’s entitlements for Public Holidays where Tuesdayisation applies;

Christmas and New Year Holiday Entitlements

An employee who normally works on the day the Public Holiday falls (Sunday):

For employees who normally work on the day the public holiday falls in this case Sunday then it is relatively straight forward to determine their entitlements as the public holiday is observed on the day it falls (Sunday 25th December and/or Sunday 1st January).

If the employee normally works on the day that the Public Holiday falls and they are not required to work (are given the public holiday off) they have the day off with normal pay (relevant daily pay).

If the employee normally works on a Sunday and is required to work, they are entitled to time and a half for the hours worked plus an alternative holiday (lieu day).

For employees who normally work a Sunday this is the day they will observe the public holiday (the Public Holiday is not Tuesdayised) and they will have no further entitlements on the Tuesday regardless of whether Tuesday is also considered an otherwise working day.

An employee who does not normally work on the day the Public Holiday falls (Sunday) but usually works on a Tuesday:

The employee works on Sunday and not Tuesday: In this situation the employee would be paid their normal rate for working Sunday. The employee will then have the day off on Tuesday and will be entitled to be paid their relevant daily pay or average daily pay.

The employee works on the Tuesday and not Sunday: As they employee does not usually work a Sunday this is a normal day off and the public holiday entitlements are transferred to the Tuesday. The employee will be paid time and a half for the hours worked on Tuesday and they will all receive a paid alternative holiday (day in lieu).

The employee works both days (Sunday and Tuesday): The employee will be paid their normal rate for the hours worked on Sunday and time and a half for the hours worked on Tuesday. The employee will also receive an alternative holiday (day in lieu).

The employee does not work either day: As they employee does not usually work a Sunday this is a normal day off and the public holiday entitlements are transferred to the Tuesday. The employee will then have the day off on Tuesday and will be entitled to be paid their relevant daily pay or average daily pay.

An employee who does not normally work on the day the Public Holiday falls (Sunday) and does not usually work a Tuesday:

The employee works on Sunday and not Tuesday: The employee will be paid their normal rate for working Sunday, there are no further entitlements on the Tuesday.

The employee works on Tuesday and not Sunday: The Sunday is a normal day off with no holiday entitlements for the employee. The employee will be paid time and a half for the hours worked on Tuesday. They are not entitled to an alternative holiday (day in lieu).

The employee works both days: The employee will be paid their normal rate for working on Sunday and paid time and a half for working Tuesday. They are not entitled to an alternative holiday (day in lieu).

The employee does not work either day: These are normal days off for the employee, they are not entitled to any payment for Sunday or Tuesday and are not entitled to an alternative holiday (day in lieu).

Boxing Day and the day after New Years

Boxing Day (26th December 2016) and the day after New Year’s (2nd January 2017) fall on a Monday (the reason for Christmas and New Year’s Day being Tuesdayised). These two public holidays will be observed on the day that they fall (they are not automatically transferred).

Entitlements when an Employee works Boxing Day, The Day After New Year's Day (or both) - Monday 26th December and Monday 2nd January

If an Employee normally works a Monday and is required to work on Boxing Day, the day after New Year’s Day or both, that work is paid at a minimum payment of time and a half for the time they actually work on the day(s). If a Monday is "otherwise a working day" for the Employee, they are also entitled to an alternative holiday(s). 

For an Employee who does not normally work on a Monday, they are not entitled to the alternative holiday.

Entitlements when an Employee does not work Boxing Day, The Day After New Year's Day (or both) - Monday 26th December and Monday 2nd January

If an Employee normally works a Monday and is not required to work on Boxing Day, the day after New Year’s Day or both, the Employee is paid for the public holiday as if they had worked as normal on the day(s) and are entitled to be paid their "relevant daily pay" or "average daily pay". For most Employees working a regular pattern of hours, the pay cycle will continue unchanged.

Where an employee does not normally work a Monday and is not required to work on Boxing Day, the day after New Year’s Day or both there is no entitlement and they have their day off as normal.

Other Important Things to Note

Alternative Holidays

The entitlement to an alternative holiday is irrespective of the time worked on the public holiday.  For example, where an employee works from 5pm on December 31st to 3am on New Year’s Day (and the day that New Year’s Day falls is otherwise a working day for that employee), that employee is entitled to a whole alternative holiday paid at the employee's relevant daily pay for the day the alternative holiday is taken.

The employee's alternative holiday entitlement can be used at any time on the agreement of the employee and the employer so long as the day it is taken is considered an otherwise working day for the employee. 

Can you insist an employee works on a public holiday?

This question can cause a lot of grief for both employers and employee's particularly when employees are planning on nursing sizeable hangovers on New Year's Day. The short answer is if the public holiday falls on a normal working day for the employee and the employee's employment agreement includes a clause allowing the employer to require the employee to work a public holiday, then yes you can, the wording the employment agreement is key.

What if an employee falls sick or is bereaved on a public holiday?

Where the employee would have been working on a public holiday but is sick or bereaved, the day would be treated as a paid unworked public holiday. Therefore:

  • the employee would be paid their relevant daily pay or average daily pay, but would not be entitled to time and a half or an alternative holiday
  • no sick or bereavement leave would be deducted.

Further Information on Public Holidays

If you require further information please contact Clubs New Zealand on 0800 4 CLUBS or visit the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website at www.employment.govt.nz

 

 

Get your hands on the future

With the Clubs New Zealand App

Get your hands on the future with Clubs New Zealand's App which can be downloaded on both Apple and Android.  The Clubs New Zealand App is all about helping you get more out of your membership. As a member of a club you can access any of our network of 300 member clubs as a reciprocal visitor and visiting a club is a breeze with the new digital membership card.

 

Find out more