August 5, 2015

Tribunal clarifies time limit on holiday pay claims

In the case of Plumb v Duncan Print Group Ltd, the claimant had been employed by the print and design company for several years, but following an accident he had been on sick leave since April 2010.

The worker had neither taken nor asked for annual leave until July 2013, at which point he wrote to bosses and asked for annual leave dating back to the time of his accident over three years earlier.

His employer agreed to pay for the annual leave for 2013/14, but not the entitlement from 2010, 2011 or 2012.

When the claimant left the company in February last year, he had brought a claim for payment in lieu of the leave for these years.

The Tribunal held that a worker absent on long-term sick leave, who does not choose to take annual leave, can carry forward four weeks of their entitlement under the EU’s Working Time Directive. But they must take it within 18 months of the end of the leave year in which it was accrued.

This rejects the argument made by the claimant’s legal team that the carry over period was effectively unlimited.

For more information on our employment law services or advice on sick pay, please contact our specialist Employment & HR team.

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