With the country in mourning after the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, attention has turned to the upcoming state funeral on Monday 19th September. King Charles III approved the order on Saturday, and schools, most businesses and many shops will close.
This will mark the final day of the national period of mourning and provide an opportunity for individuals, businesses, and other institutions to honour Her Majesty and her reign.
A question raised is whether employees are automatically entitled to this bank holiday. We break down what employers are advised to do, and whether employees are guaranteed time off during this national bank holiday.
Are employees entitled to a day off for the State Funeral bank holiday?
Just like other bank holidays, this one won’t come with any guaranteed time off for workers. While employees do not have a legal right to paid time off for bank holidays, their employers are free to include such holidays in their employees’ paid leave.
Therefore, the contract of employment should be the first port of call when trying to figure out whether workers are entitled to the bank holiday.
Employers are also able to grant employees the day off as a gesture of goodwill if they so choose.
What if an employee has already booked annual leave for this day?
This is a matter for discussion between employer and employee. However, the best call of action would be to allow them to cancel this annual leave and replace with a paid public holiday entitlement instead.
Or you can give them the bank holiday as a day in lieu.
The Government advises…
Whilst the government has no business interfering in contracts already in place between employees and employers, the government has indicated that most employees should be able to take the holiday off.
The government has also expressed that due to the unique nature of the bank holiday, they hope that businesses will react sensitively to requests from employees who need to take the day of the funeral off.
We hope that we have covered the basics of this for you. If you still have some questions about the bank holiday, you can find out more on the dedicated Government page.