Allowing time off work

Who has the right to time off work and when is it paid?


Employees, and other types of workers, have a range of rights to time off work. While most of these rights are only available to employees, some are available to all workers. Note that some of this time off must be paid.

Annual leave and other time off

For example, you must give every worker paid annual leave of at least 5.6 weeks - 28 working days for those working a five or six-day week. This can include bank holidays and public holidays.

However, you must not dismiss or subject a worker to any detriment if:

  • they try to use their statutory rights to time off
  • you think they are planning to use one of these rights

Where a worker does not have the statutory right to time off, or has the right but the time off is unpaid, you can choose to:

  • allow that time off
  • pay them for the time off

For more information, see our table on paid and unpaid statutory time-off rights for employees and other workers.