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  • The early May bank holiday is moving: Here’s what employers need to know

The early May bank holiday is moving: Here’s what employers need to know

The early May bank holiday will change dates this year for a very special reason. Read on to find out how the move will impact your business.

Wednesday, Aug 12, 2020
2 min read

The early May bank holiday normally takes place on the first Monday in May…

But this year the Government has made the decision to move from it from Monday 4th May to Friday 8th May to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day.

What is VE Day?

VE Day stands for Victory in Europe Day, and it marks the day near the end of World War II when fighting against Nazi Germany came to an end in Europe.

On 8th May 1945, Prime Minister Winston Churchill made an announcement on the radio at 3pm that the war in Europe was over, following Germany’s surrender the day before.

This year marks the 75th anniversary of that day, and changing the bank holiday creates a three-day weekend so people can pay tribute to those who served in the Second World War, as well as those who continue to serve in the UK Armed Forces today.

How the date move affects your business

Because this bank holiday is simply moving date (as opposed to a bank holiday being added or taken away), it shouldn’t affect your employees’ public holiday entitlement...

Whether your staff get bank holidays off work or not depends on what you’ve already agreed in their employee contracts.

But don’t forget to check the wording...

Review the finer details of staff contracts

If contracts say that employees get the “early May bank holiday” off work, nothing changes. But if contracts say that employees get “the first Monday of May” off work, it’s a little trickier…

Because technically, this gives employees the right to the first Monday of May off work, which they won’t get now the bank holiday has moved. But don’t worry, you can fix this by agreeing a temporary amendment to the contracts with your employees.

There are also a couple of things to think about when it comes to booking annual leave, too…

Staff may need to amend holidays

If your employees have already requested time off on either the original or new bank holiday date, they might need to amend this now that the bank holiday has changed.

For example, if an employee has booked leave for Friday 8th May, they might need to cancel it if they now get the day off as part of their public holiday entitlement.

Similarly, if an employee hasn’t booked time off on Monday 4th May because they thought it was already a bank holiday, they might wish to book annual leave now that it’s a normal working day.

How our smart software helps you

Our BrightHR software makes managing the early May bank holiday confusion a doddle. You don’t need to do a thing, because the software automatically corrects the date for you on the system.

It also flags any annual leave booked for either Monday 4th May or Friday 8th May on all fixed employees’ profiles, so they can book or cancel any holiday requests accordingly.

Got a question about the early May bank holiday changes?

Speak to one of our HR experts today. They’ll give you confidential legal advice on any bank holiday or annual leave issue, and they’re available 24/7. Call today on 0800 783 2806.


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