How to navigate the rules for time off and pay on public holidays

Spring time always means a lot of holidays. Easter, Christ’s Ascension Day, Whitsunday and so on. Most of us look forward to the holidays that give us a well-deserved break from everyday life, but it can also be difficult to navigate the rules around the holidays. We have looked into it. 

Are you as an employee entitled to paid days off? How does it work if you are one of those that still needs to work on a holiday? When understanding the rules around the holidays, there is one phrase that is essential: weekday holidays (in Danish, ‘søgnehelligdag’). 

Weekday holidays are holidays not falling on Sundays, and therefore evidently falling on a weekday. Maybe you have heard of FO-days, SH-time off or odd holidays. No matter what, you need to know that they are all different words for the same thing. In this text we will use the term weekday holidays.

Are you entitled to time off on a weekday holiday? 

One of the key phrases when looking at salary and work on a weekday holiday is ‘work agreements’ or contracts. To some extent the rules are very individual because it is about which conditions the employee is hired under and this depends on the person’s work agreement. 

But to make our society work it requires that some groups of professions are working all year round – even during holidays. 

If you are one of those that are working during the holidays, you then have to be aware that you as a minimum have the right to your normal salary for the hours. However you can also be entitled to a special bonus per hour when working on weekday holidays. In the work agreement it will appear whether you are entitled to a bonus and in that case, how much. The bonus is also called ‘contractual supplement’. 

But it is important to remember that to be able to have the right to a bonus on holidays it is a requirement that you can read it in your work agreement, the contract or a company handbook.

Are you entitled for paid time off on a weekday holiday?

If you are entitled to pay even though you have time off on a weekday holiday depends on a number of factors. Besides what is written in the work agreement or the contract, it also depends on whether you have a fixed salary or are paid per hour. If you have a fixed salary, you have the right to get your total monthly payment or weekly payment, no matter if there are weekday holidays in your payment period or not. 

If you are paid per hour, you have to be aware that this works in a whole other way. If you have to get paid for time off on weekday holidays as an employee with hourly salary, this requires that you continually pay into the weekday holiday savings account. This is also called the SH-account or a ‘Fritvalgs’ account (free choice accont). 

But how does it work? Often they will be transferred 4 pct. on the SH-account, but the percent rate varys from contract to contract. When there is a holiday in this case, the employee gets an amount from the account and the hours the individual is not working is thereby covered, because the company is closed on the weekday holiday. 

This arrangement is not legally required and therefore the employee can only get the savings settlement for the weekday holidays if the arrangement is apparent in the contract, or if the concrete workplace has agreed to begin the arrangement.

What if you are not covered by a work agreement? 

Without a work agreement the employee is more disadvantaged when it comes to other bonuses or supplements for working on the weekday holidays and time off. 

Without a work agreement it still applies that the employee with a fixed salary has to get his or hers total payment. For the employees with hourly salary, you can be reduced in wages if you don’t have an arrangement or policy in the company. The work agreement for hourly paid employees is therefore essential if you want to be ensured a wage for the days in which the company is closed because of weekday holidays. 

If you as an employee do not have a work agreement, you have to look into the employment contract for the SH-account. 

Intempus helps with the overview

Yes, there are a lot of ‘what if’s’ and ‘but’ in the rules around payment and work in the weekday holidays. But the best thing you initially can do as an employee and employer is to check the work agreement, if you have one. This should be a good guideline to how to deal with the weekday holidays. 

At the same time Intempus continually helps to give the overview of who is working when and who is taking time off, whether it is a weekday holiday or not. 

Besides giving the employee the possibility to register his or hers working hours, you can also use Intempus to register time off on vacation og holidays. This gives the administration a far bigger overview of who is still working and who is taking time off.

If you have a supplement/bonus arrangement in connection with weekday holidays, Intempus can be a part of ensuring that the right amount is paid to those employees that have been working during the holidays. This happens due to Intempus automatically generating a SH-registration before the holiday and thereby the 1 SH-day or 7,4 SH-hours and the payment system will handle the right amount or rate for the supplement. 

This means that the one dealing with the administrative work in the company and the employee does not have to type in the holiday registrations for every employee manually. This saves both parties time, trouble and conflicts – and that is a factor you would like to avoid during the holidays. 

If you have more questions about weekday holidays, feel free to contact Intempus. We will answer your questions as best we can or look into the case.

Do you have any questions about visiting holidays? Or do you want to hear more about how Intempus can make it easier to handle public holidays for your particular company? Then contact us on +45 26390400 or book a non-binding demo:

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