Holiday Pay – GMB says Enough is Enough

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GMB calls on Government to ensure the right to paid holidays is enforced by HMRC

There is a nationwide problem with employers failing to pay workers holiday pay.

At one extreme there are employers who fail to afford workers any paid holidays at all because they know the workers in question are low paid, vulnerable and either unaware of their rights or unlikely to assert them.

Then there are those employers, such as those who operate in the gig economy, who try to argue that individuals do not qualify for paid holidays under the Working Time Regulations. Here, it is argued, that individuals are ‘self-employed’ rather than ‘workers’ or ‘employees’ and are therefore not entitled to paid holidays. Despite spectacularly losing this argument in the Employment Tribunal, companies such as Uber and Addison Lee are nonetheless trying to appeal the point. Another company, Hermes, is also talking about an appeal.

And then there is that category of employer who fails to pay workers the correct holiday pay by only paying basic pay and failing to account for elements such as overtime, commission and other elements normally received by the worker. The right to receive as holiday pay the pay that you would normally receive if working is firmly established by a long line of legal authority and it beggars belief that some employers choose to risk industrial or legal action rather than pay workers the correct holiday pay.

Regardless of how an employer dresses up a failure to pay holiday pay, the fact remains that exploitation is exploitation. Paid holiday, at its core, is a health and safety provision and a failure to afford workers paid holidays or pay the correct holiday pay creates unnecessary risks.

Paul Maloney, Regional Secretary, GMB Southern Region, said, “Enough is enough. GMB calls on the government to enforce the right to paid holidays. HMRC enforces the National Minimum Wage and names and shames errant employers. There is no reason why the government cannot extend this facility to holiday pay.”

If you believe your employer is failing to pay you the correct holiday pay, please contact your union representative without delay.


Relevant Court Cases:


Addison Lee