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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50161
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Can my employer make me take holiday during a refit to my work

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can my employer make me take holiday during a refit to my work area? i am a fitness instructor and am fully employed by the company on a PAYE basis. I have never had a contract of employment, and they are starting to make my role extremely difficult.
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long is the holiday and when is it due to be taken?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have been working the same hours (evenings and daytime) delivering fitness classes in the studio for 15 years+ and i still do not have a contract of employment!

The Studio is apparently having a refit/work done in two weeks time. Myself and my fellow instructors have just received an email stating that we will have to take these hours as holiday because the studio is not available due to the works being completed.

I have been told i have to take my three hours that are effected as holiday, otherwise i will not be paid.

Hello, thanks for your patience. The Working Time Regulations 1998 allow the employer to dictate when its employees take their holidays, just as they can reject an employee's request for a specific period of leave. They would be required to give you a specific minimum notice period to facilitate that and in the case of forcing you to take leave on specific dates it must be notice twice as long as the leave to be taken. So for example, they want you to take leave equal to 5 days' holiday, they must ask you at least 10 days before the leave is due to be taken.
In your case they have given you about a couple of weeks' notice so it means that they can only force you to take about a week's leave with that notice.
So yes, it is possible for an employer to force you to take your holidays at times chosen by them as long as the required notice has been given to you.
I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

You have not considered the fact that i do not have a contract of employment, and that the hours i work are none standard hours (evenings). I work the hours i do because they fit around my children's school hours and on a number of previous occasions when work has been completed my hours have been paid as normal.

i thought that with no terms and conditions and or a contract of employment the company were breaking employment law and therefore could not enforce any 'working time regulations 1998' criteria....

please clarify..

I am afraid it is irrelevant whether you have a contract of employment or not - this is a legal right given by statute, nothing to do with contracts of employment. The lac of contract does not affect the employer's rights in this respect in any way.
The employer should have issued you with a written statement of employment particulars within 2 months of you starting the role but if they had not done so then it certainly does not mean they cannot enforce other rights rights they have under law, such as this one - they definitely can, it just means they have failed in one respect and you can pursue them for that and try to get this statement issued.
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