Change to annual leave affecting childcare

(39 Posts)
Popsandmoomoo Sun 18-Oct-20 11:33:25

So after having been in my job for 20 years (most recently working from home whilst looking after 3 children during lockdown) we get a new admin manager who comes in doesn’t thank anyone for their considerable efforts or make any effort to get to know us or what we do in our roles and instead announces (among other things) that we are no longer allowed to take more than 2 weeks continuous annual leave -first of all can she even do this and secondly if I find that I have to resign as a result of this policy (I can’t afford childcare over the summer holidays) the does this count as constructive dismissal ?

OP’s posts: |
wishywashywoowoo70 Sun 18-Oct-20 11:36:25

I think 2 weeks max is normal for most places. It is our office unless it's a special reason.

chipsandpeas Sun 18-Oct-20 11:38:10


I think 2 weeks max is normal for most places. It is our office unless it's a special reason.

this is how it is in my work

Cloudybean Sun 18-Oct-20 11:39:37

Has this always been company policy and she is just the first one to make sure it's actually implimented, or is it nowhere in policy and she has just decided? Fairly standard for companies to have no more than 2 weeks without additional approval steps, but it really depends on your company. Have you spoken to HR? (If where you work has one), it will make a difference- if it's always been policy that's different to her just making it up.

margotsdevil Sun 18-Oct-20 11:39:52

Surely you don't have enough holidays to cover the entire summer break anyway though? Could you not switch around what you do so that the part you can't cover is in the middle?

flowery Sun 18-Oct-20 11:40:39

Is there anything to suggest that there is a contractual entitlement currently to take more than two weeks, or to take holiday at the times you wish? Is your manager automatically obliged to grant holiday requests for 3/4/5 weeks at a time during school holidays?

It's unlikely, and even if that was the case, therefore this constitutes a change to terms and conditions, I imagine it would be quite easy to justify.

giggly Sun 18-Oct-20 11:49:12

Are you saying that you use 6-7 weeks annual leave during the summer holidays? Presumably there are other staff who take/ would like to take annual mileage then as well.
My work/ managers have no concrete rules but make sure everyone gets more or less what they want. I take between 15 - 18 days but split into two.

RevolutionRadio Sun 18-Oct-20 11:52:28

In all my jobs it's always been in the contact that any leave over 2 weeks needs to be discussed with management and special permission granted. Check if this is in your contract, it could still be granted but they should be taking into consideration the needs of others who might want holidays and they're unable to because people have booked extended leave.

JaJaDingDong Sun 18-Oct-20 11:53:34

I agree that's fairly standard. Perhaps you could take time off without pay instead? Although that wouldn't help if more than 2 consecutive weeks is not permissible.

How old are the DCs? Perhaps you could take half days for more weeks.

Or maybe it's time their father looked after them in the hols.

RedskyAtnight Sun 18-Oct-20 12:02:51

We have this rule too. Though you can get longer than 2 weeks approved if you make a case to senior management.

In terms of can she do this - what does your contract say? Mine says something like I can take annual leave with the approval of my manager, so bringing in a rule like this would not contravene the conditions.

Though, if this is the only rule, surely you can just get round it by taking 2 weeks, working a week or 2, then taking another 2 weeks? Surely you don't have enough annual leave to take off the whole summer holiday (or if you do, you can't have enough leave to cover other holidays)?

choosername1234 Sun 18-Oct-20 12:03:16

It is my understanding that the employer can dictate when you take your annual leave although it is usually best practice and best for morale to allow employees to choose when to take it. Everywhere I have worked there has been a 2 week limit unless requested in writing

flowery Sun 18-Oct-20 12:04:52

If they didn’t bring in the rule explicitly, they could achieve the same result anyway by just not approving leave requests for longer than 3 weeks. By having a rule, they’re saving people the hassle of applying for longer and getting it turned down.

flowery Sun 18-Oct-20 12:06:08

Longer than 2 weeks, beg your pardon

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sun 18-Oct-20 12:09:11

It's the same in every single place that I've ever worked - anything over 2 weeks needs special permission and is usually only given for things like weddings or birth of a child (for the other partner). If this is a direct change to your contract that hasn't been implemented properly then you may have some sort of a case, but holidays are always at the business's discretion - that's why they have to get authorised in the first place.

freezedriedromance Sun 18-Oct-20 12:11:37

An employer can dictate when you use the entirety of your annual leave provided they give you at least the minimum statutory notice. So yes, they can.

Candleabra Sun 18-Oct-20 12:15:29

I agree this is a commonplace rule. Anything counting as a 'long' holiday (over 2 weeks) has to have special approval and usually a lot of notice. In exceptional cases it is approved - eg visiting family abroad or holiday of a lifetime - but one person getting the whole summer hols off as

londonscalling Sun 18-Oct-20 12:53:07

What about your colleagues? Do they have to forfeit time off during school holidays so you can be off?

FAQs Sun 18-Oct-20 12:55:45

I’ve never had a job where you can take more than two weeks in one period.

BuffaloCauliflower Sun 18-Oct-20 12:57:33

Surely you don’t usually have enough annual leave to take the entire summer holiday off anyway? What about the other holidays? Do they not need you at all for 6 weeks at a time. No more than 2 weeks except with special permission is pretty standard.

lunar1 Sun 18-Oct-20 12:59:20

Is there a limit to how many people can be off at once? Maybe someone has complained.

JudgeRindersMinder Sun 18-Oct-20 13:00:49

It doesn’t matter what your contract says. It will mention a period of notice to be given for contractual changes, and given that it’s October now and you’re speaking about next summer, this will cover the notice required

popcorndiva Sun 18-Oct-20 13:13:34

Yep pretty standard I am afraid. You can apply for parental leave which is unpaid but they can dictate when you take it

M0mmyneedswine Sun 18-Oct-20 13:19:02

We have to get approval from head office for anything over 2 weeks, pretty standard in places ive worked

KatherineJaneway Sun 18-Oct-20 13:20:32

Your first move is to check what your company policy is on leave. In my experience most places allow a maximum of 2 weeks off unless agreed with management for a particular reason.

Also how long has this been going on? If it is years you may be able to argue it is custom and practice for you. Long shot but might be worth a go.

PullTheBricksDown Sun 18-Oct-20 13:23:16

Anyone I've known who does this has a term time only contract. I take it you don't? Have you always just been allowed to book the whole 6 week summer holidays off?

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