Amendments to the Annual Holidays Act enter into force in April
Amendments to the Annual Holidays Act safeguard the employees’ right to four weeks of paid annual leave, as mandated by the European Union legislation, even if they have been absent from work due to sickness or medical rehabilitation.
In addition, the amendments extend the time period during which the employee may take their annual holiday that has been postponed due to incapacity for work.
The Act will enter into force at the beginning of the leave-earning year that starts on 1 April 2019.
The Government proposes that the amendments to the Annual Holidays Act be ratified in the presidential session on 15 March 2019.
Provisions on the employees’ right to additional leave days supplementing their annual holiday will be included in the Annual Holidays Act. Employees will be entitled to additional leave if they have earned less than 24 annual leave days because of absence from work due to sickness or medical rehabilitation. Employees taking additional leave will be entitled to a remuneration corresponding to their regular or average wage.
The provision on additional leave will not apply to employees who have earned at least 24 leave days during the leave-earning year.
The Annual Holidays Act contains provisions on the postponing of annual leave due to incapacity for work. The amendments to the Annual Leave Act extend the period during which the annual leave, postponed due to incapacity, is to be taken.
Employees whose annual holiday has been postponed due to incapacity for work will continue to be entitled to take their summer holiday during the holiday period, and winter holiday before the start of the next holiday period. If this is not possible, employees could use their postponed annual holiday during the holiday period in the calendar year following the original holiday period, but no later than by the end of that calendar year.
The purpose of the amendments to the Annual Holidays Act is to ensure consistency with the case law of the EU Court of Justice.
The new provisions will be applicable to leave earned during the leave-earning year beginning on 1 April 2019.
Johanna Ylitepsa, Senior Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 506 4207