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Topic: Policies

duvet day policy
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Duvet day policy

Duvet day policy

Our duvet day policy allows employees to take a couple of annual leave days each holiday year without having to plan to do so in advance. Make such you control how your policy operates in practice as you don’t want to end up with a free for all!

Working time requirements

Under the Working Time Regulations 1998 all workers are entitled to a statutory minimum of 5.6 weeks annual leave. In the absence of any different provision in the contract of employment, a worker who wants to take holiday has to give you notice at least equal to twice the number of days’ leave that they wish to take. So if they want to take a single day’s annual leave, they would need to give you a minimum of two working days’ notice. This is also the position set out in our Holidays Policy. The Regulations allow you to decline a holiday request provided that you give notice equal to the number of days requested. So if you want to decline a single day’s annual leave request, you would have to give a minimum of one working day’s notice that you’ve turned it down. Our Duvet Day Policy effectively allows your staff to take a day off work without having to give this advance notice of annual leave. However, as this could cause disruption and uncertainty for your business, it’s important you clearly set out your rules in the policy. You need to retain control over how the policy is going to operate. For example, there may be specified times of the year or days of the week when you don’t want to permit duvet days to be taken.

Policy operation

The starting point is to set out how many duvet days are permitted each year (normally, it wouldn’t be more than two or three) and to make clear that duvet days are still part of the employee’s normal annual leave entitlement - they’re not extra days. Our policy then sets out the procedure the employee needs to follow to take a duvet day. Next, we’ve provided for the employee to exercise their reasonable judgment in choosing when they want to take duvet days, i.e. not on days when they have prior work commitments such as customer or client meetings or important work to finish. Finally, we’ve stated that the policy is subject to your business requirements and the need to maintain adequate staffing levels. Thus, you reserve the right to postpone the requested duvet day.

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