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Annual leave and maternity leave

(10 Posts)
Showmethecake Sat 10-Feb-18 21:59:01

Baby due end of March and I currently work part time. Including bank holidays for 2018 I will have 139 hours of annual leave. Leave year runs Jan to Dec.

Maternity leave is due to start at 38 weeks (12 March). My employer has told me that I have to take all annual leave before starting maternity leave and the handbook states 'Annual leave cannot usually be carried over from one holiday year to the next. If the holiday year is due to end during your maternity leave, you should ensure that you have taken the full year's entitlement before starting your maternity leave'

Is this lawful and can they insist that I take it all before mat leave?

I haven't been able to take any annual leave yet this year as work has been too busy. Had one day booked off and was asked to cancel it.

Will I lose the leave or do they have to tag it onto the end? So far they have said that I do have to take it before as that is what has happened to other women on mat leave.

If I have to take it all in 2018 then I wouldn't be able to take a full 12 months mat leave as I'd have to come back in December to take my leave. Surely a company can't dictate that?

I'm totally confused but not prepared to lose what I'm entitled to! Help please wise ones!

pastabest Sat 10-Feb-18 22:07:25

So you basically have a full years leave to take before you start maternity leave in a few weeks.

Lucky you grin

I did this, I took 4 weeks annual leave before actually starting my maternity leave a few days before the baby was due. Took the full year off and then had another years worth of annual leave to use up that I had accrued on mat leave before I went back to work. So in total I had 14 months off.

pastabest Sat 10-Feb-18 22:13:44

BTW Is there any reason you don't want to take all your leave before mat leave? I would bite their hand off at the chance to have a few weeks off at full pay before mat leave kicks in.

They should be able to make arrangements to pay you the equivalent money for your leave if you don't actually manage to take it all before you go.

What were you anticipating would happen to your annual leave when you were planning your mat leave?

k4rlyb Sat 10-Feb-18 22:17:07

No you don't have to take your leave before you go on maternity leave as you can use it before you go back to work.

You still accrue annual leave while on maternity leave.

Look on and ACAS they will give advice.

Ckeeley88 Sat 10-Feb-18 22:20:16

I Did this I had 3 weeks holiday left to take before I went on mat leave as my holidays like urs ran jan to dec and my ds was due the 23rd of dec in the end I went off the 1st dec and my mat leave started 1 day before I was due even thou ds was 5 days late. It ment I still got paid full pay for am extra 3 weeks x

Isittimeforbed Sat 10-Feb-18 22:23:13

Maternity Action says that the government recommendation is that you can carry at least 28 days of leave over if you can't use them because of maternity leave. They have a helpline to call but it always seems to be busy.

Showmethecake Sat 10-Feb-18 22:29:20

Thanks all.

Pasta I know it's a nice problem to have! wink

I am planning on taking two weeks leave before maternity leave but didn't want to leave it too close to due date in case baby has to come early.

Initially I planned to return from mat leave in December and take the rest of my leave then, but I want to know if I have the option to have the full 52 weeks mat leave. If my employer is insisting that I take all annual leave by December then I couldn't have a whole year mat leave or would forfeit annual leave. Which doesn't seem right.

Will check out the maternity action site as well.

Showmethecake Sat 10-Feb-18 22:31:15

Also now I don't have enough time before due date to take all leave. I work 21 hrs per week and have time off in lieu, only a couple of hours, that has to be taken (don't get paid overtime).

We had a big project that finished last week so haven't been able to take anytime before now

Acorncat Sat 10-Feb-18 22:34:31

Can you not start maternity leave on your due date, rather than 38w, and use your holiday before? It was my company's policy that we couldn't carry forward any leave but I asked anyway and they said I could as long as it was just 2 weeks worth and I tagged it on the end so I was still coming back after 12m. I did end up getting paid for a few days holiday as I didn't manage to take them due to staff shortages.

Cackattack Sun 11-Feb-18 15:36:01

My contract had a similar statement, however it meant ACCRUED leave, so although you entitlement is eg 24 days holiday per year you actually haven’t ‘earnt’ it yet, you earn it at 2 days per month. Most companies in the uk let employees take holiday before it is earned. So in my example, if I took a week of holiday in January but left the job at the end of Feb, I would have earned 4 days and owe the company 1, which they may deduct from my last pay check.

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