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HR and mat leave

(18 Posts)
Givemecoffeeplease Sun 10-Apr-16 14:04:56

I'm discussing my return to work with my HR team and I want to add my holiday allowance on to the end of my 11 months maternity leave (my husband took one month under the new rules) to bump it up to a year. My HR contact has said "any extension of this absence has to be approved by your line manager as with any holiday request. *Obviously, this is a more expensive option for the department as it means they will be paying your cover for longer*". Am I right in thinking that this is completely irrelevant to me - I'm not responsible for their budget and I'm only taking the holiday I'm entitled to anyway. Or am I being precious and unreasonable?! Just seems to be putting pressure on me to go back when they want, rather than when I'm legally entitled to. NB it's a large-ish company not a one-man-band type place if that's relevant.

LivingInMidnight Sun 10-Apr-16 14:10:21

I'd ignore them and book it with your line manager.

RubbleBubble00 Sun 10-Apr-16 14:11:04

They are just explaining why you need to ask your managers approval. My firm won't let us take any more than two wks so adding holidays on to end maternity leave needs special permission. Sometimes it's granted and sometimes it's not depending what's on the go at work

FuckSanta Sun 10-Apr-16 14:12:50

Just seems to be putting pressure on me to go back when they want, rather than when I'm legally entitled to.

You have no legal entitlement to take your annual leave whenever you want to. They are perfectly entitled to refuse. Just so you're clear.

PegsPigs Sun 10-Apr-16 14:13:22

It's hugely counterproductive NOT to tag it on as you'll barely be in the office as you're trying to use it up. Ask your line manager as HR requested putting a business case forward as to why it makes more sense that way.

ilovesooty Sun 10-Apr-16 14:14:41

You're entitled to the holiday time but your company can refuse a specific request to take your leave at that time.

Lazyafternoon Sun 10-Apr-16 14:18:24

The HR person is probably just trying to be helpful in giving you all the information your boss would be considering when they get your leave request. It would be pretty mean if your request to add annual leave on was refused due to cost issues. As if you started back then a few weeks later took your annual leave they'd not have the cover in place - surely it makes things easier for them to just keep on your mat cover for longer!
Taking any leave you can before going back is a pretty normal thing to do, so I'd be surprised if they weren't expecting it though.

TheLadyWithTheYellowHat Sun 10-Apr-16 14:19:16

Where I work (retail) they add holiday leave onto the end of maternity leave I took from jan-november off as maternity worked the busy December period then took January the following year off for my holidays

Givemecoffeeplease Sun 10-Apr-16 14:19:31

He's suggested I keep my return to work date the same, eg 30 July, and be "paid" for my holiday so officially go back on 10 July and be on holiday 10 to 30 July.

Thanks for your input. I just feel under pressure not to extend my leave when actually all I want is the full year. But on the other hand it must be an admin nightmare.

FuckSanta Sun 10-Apr-16 14:20:43

Returning to work for a month then taking a month off isn't "tagging it onto maternity leave".

Artistic Sun 10-Apr-16 14:36:47

Hi Giveme, I was in an identical position and as I understand there are cost implications to the organisation that need to be allocated properly ie statutory pay is not a company cost so no one might be affected much whether you take some or all of it. But when you take paid leave, someone's going to pay for it - and that can't be HR, it's going to be the department you work for. Hence HR can't approve, they need your dept to approve and accept this cost.

I had 40 days of accrued leave but was not given a clear yes/no answer upfront. It was more of a 'it's a year later, we will have to see' kind of answer. Closer to the date, my manager was ok for me to take these in continuity with my Maternity leave. I also applied for part time (3 days) which meant I could stretch my 40 days over 3 months. So I managed to get 15 months off in total. But it would have been impossible to get everyone to agree to this when I went on maternity leave. I had to play it by ear and let things evolve as and when my manager & HR were happy to support me.

Another idea that I had considered was spreading out my leave 2 days each week for 20 weeks which gave me part time work at full time pay. For tactical reasons I decided not to go down this route (I was sure I wouldn't be able to move to 3 days employment when I ran out of leave) but you could consider this as you get to use your leave and also start on time.

Artistic Sun 10-Apr-16 14:48:47

Just read your last post. Looks like your manager is ok with the cost but not with your extended absence. Let me assure you that it is NOT an admin nightmare to give you what you want. It's an inconvenience to have you away. If I were you I wouldn't accept the last month paid option. I would agree to starting on the agreed date but ask when/how will you then be able to use your month of leave?

MinesAPintOfTea Sun 10-Apr-16 14:52:58

I'd rather know what criteria my manager is supposed to be using to let me give the best possible case to them. Better that than assume its going to be trivial and have it rejected out of hand.

One other thing to take into account: how does your company handle child illness? Mine allows you to take annual leave with no notice - or unpaid. Therefore all the parents of nursery-age DC hoard annual leave for this purpose.

You can expect to lose a couple of days a fortnight for months if your DC is going into childcare...

confusedandemployed Sun 10-Apr-16 14:56:22

Are you talking about this year's or last year's annual leave? They have to let you take any accrued but untaken leave from last year, and 99% of companies do this by tagging it on to the end of mat leave.

If it's this year's leave then they can refuse. You don't have the right to decide when you take leave if in the year the leave is accrued.

FuckSanta Sun 10-Apr-16 15:05:38

Are you talking about this year's or last year's annual leave? They have to let you take any accrued but untaken leave from last year, and 99% of companies do this by tagging it on to the end of mat leave

No they don't. They could pay OP for it instead. Not all companies operate a leave year. And where are you getting your 99% figure from?

Artistic Sun 10-Apr-16 17:12:54

I have to agree with confused as this is what my HR told me as well. It's not exactly 'always tagged', rather a 'use your old leave ASAP ' policy that most companies apply. This is due to accounting practices regarding the 'accrued cost' for them I think.

AntiHop Sun 10-Apr-16 17:19:59

I had a similar response from my hr department. I wanted to carry over leave into the new financial year and tag it onto the end of my maternity leave. Only my manager could approve that, not HR. (she did approve it.)

PansyGiraffe Sun 10-Apr-16 17:42:08

Legally they can't pay you for it unless you're leaving - they certainly have no right to force you to accept payment instead of time off. You have to be allowed to carry forward leave you haven't been able to take in a holiday year, so point this out - much better you take it in a lump before you return than try to manage when you take double holiday. (If your Co doesn't have holiday year, your personal holiday year is based on the anniversary of when you started work.)

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