Holiday Pay and Voluntary Overtime
Should Workers’ holiday pay include overtime for “shift overruns”?
A decision by the EAT in Flowers v East of England Ambulance Trust (EEAT), held that voluntary overtime should be included in holiday pay if it is paid over a ‘sufficient period’.
Ambulance Crew of the EEAT had clauses in their employment contracts relating to:
- ‘Non-guaranteed’ overtime (which was compulsory but irregular) and ;
- ‘Voluntary’ overtime (which was entirely voluntary, and also irregular).
Overtime varied with each crew member.
During a holiday pay claim, the ambulance crew argued that their voluntary overtime should be included as their ‘normal remuneration’. On appeal, the EAT held that non-guaranteed overtime in respect of “shift overruns” should be included in the calculation of holiday pay as it was paid over a sufficient period of time. The only exception is when overtime is worked on an occasional and infrequent basis.
Acas guidance states that this decision only applies to the 4 weeks of annual leave which is required under European law. Additionally, workers in the UK must receive 1.6 weeks of leave and some will receive more as part of their terms and conditions of employment. Many employers choose to apply the judgments to this extra annual leave however; it is not a legal requirement.
For more information on calculating holiday pay, please visit Acas’ guide: Calculating holiday pay
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