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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Just what is the position on employment law when it comes to

Resolved Question:

Just what is the position on employment law when it comes to pre-arranged holidays?
I have a holiday booked over the christmas period which was mentioned at my interview last December 2012. All year i have been pushing for an answer to this from my employer, and in July they finally told me it was against company policy to book holidays in December.
I informed them that it was mentioned at my interview, and was told someone would get back to me.
I have contacted the person whom held my interview, he has confirmed that it was discussed at interview and said he would seek operational clearance (Work in security) and get back to me, this was in July.
I'm still waiting for an answer, and this morning i received a phone call from my new area supervisor informing me that i can not have the time off.

Any help would be appreciated, thanks, David
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. I presume it was never agreed that you can take this time off?

Customer:

At interview i agreed to work any days last christmas, informed him of my pre-booked holiday for this christmas, and he replied that "We will cross that bridge when we come to it"

Ben Jones :

Unfortunately there is no legal right to take pre-booked holidays. The employer still reserves the right to reject a request for that time off so if someone wants to book a holiday they are best advised to do so only once they have received formal approval from the employer that they are allowed to take the time off. Of course this will be impossible when starting a new job so in these circumstances to be certain you should come to a formal agreement with the employer that as part of agreeing to take you on, they also agree to grant you that time off. In your case there was no such agreement and the matter was simply left for resolution at a later date. That leaves the employer with the legal right to reject your request, something they can do under the Working Time Regulations.


 

Customer:

sums it up quite nicely, best start looking for another job then!

Ben Jones :

The other issue is that as you do not have 2 years' continuous service you are not protected against unfair dismissal so you can be dismissed for more or less any reason, including if you decide to go off on the holiday without the employer's approval

Ben Jones :

Sorry, i know its bad news ..

Customer:

holiday cost over a grand, i have already informed my new supervisor i will be going, he said that it would leave him no other option to use disciplinary action against me, i informed him that if he did that, then i wouldn't be working the new year either.

Customer:

the overall impression i got from the job interview was that my holiday wouldn't be a problem, but obviously it now is!

Ben Jones :

I understand but from what you say it was never formally approved, just that it will be discussed at a later stage

Customer:

ok, cheers XXXXX XXXXX time i will know better. have a good xmas

Ben Jones :

Many thanks you too - hope it's a good holiday after all that!

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