Two-week vacation leave and employment during the year

Service

An employee employed under an employment contract is entitled to an annual, uninterrupted holiday leave, for the period of which he retains the right to remuneration. Annual leave should be dedicated to the regeneration of the employee's strength, which is why this topic is so important both for the employee and the employer.

The dimension of the annual leave

Each employee employed on the basis of an employment contract is entitled to leave in the amount of:

  • 20 days or
  • 26 days.

The length of the employee's annual leave depends on the length of service that a given person has. The higher leave limit is available to employees with at least 10 years of service. Periods of study may also be included in seniority.

Breakdown of leave into parts

As a rule, the holiday leave limit to which an employee is entitled should be uninterrupted - used in full once. However, the provisions of the Labor Code allow the leave to be divided into parts, provided that:

  • the leave will be distributed at the employee's request,
  • at least one part of the vacation should not be shorter than 14 consecutive calendar days.

Due to the above, annual leave may be divided into parts, however, it is not allowed to break it into any parts.

Importantly, the employer is not obliged to accept the employee's application to divide the leave into parts. The employer should refuse the proposal to divide the employee's leave into smaller parts than provided for by the provisions of the Labor Code. Thus, there may be a situation in which the employer obliges the employee to use at least 14 consecutive calendar days of annual leave.

Employment during the year and a 14-day holiday leave

An employee who is employed during the calendar year or who does not work the entire year will be granted annual leave in proportion to the time worked.

An employee who was employed during a calendar year and acquired the right to a vacation leave, one part of which could provide a 14-day vacation, may submit an application to the employer to divide the leave into parts. The employer is obliged to provide the employee with at least 14 consecutive calendar days of rest, and not 14 days of vacation leave.

In the opinion of labor law experts, the dominant view is that in the case of employment during a calendar year, the employer is not obliged to provide the employee with a rest for 14 consecutive days. This opinion is due to the fact that an employee who has a full vacation leave (20 or 26 days) has more opportunities to distribute the vacation in the most favorable manner than an employee whose vacation was calculated proportionally. However, such a concept is not reflected in the provisions of labor law. Start a free 30-day trial period with no strings attached!

Example 1.

An employee who does not have 10 years of work experience was hired on April 1, 2020 for a period of two years. This is the first time that an employee has been hired this year, but not in his life. The employee's vacation leave calculated proportionally is 15 days. The employer may grant the employee a one-time leave of 15 days of annual leave or may accept the employee's request to divide the leave into parts. The condition for accepting the employee's application for the division of leave into parts is that one part of the leave will fall on at least 14 consecutive calendar days of rest.

In a situation where an employee employed during a calendar year has not acquired the right to leave to the extent that allows them to take 14 consecutive calendar days of rest, the employer should not accept the employee's application for the division of leave into parts.

Situations preventing the granting of 14 consecutive calendar days of rest

There are situations in which the application of the provisions of the Labor Code regarding granting 14 consecutive days of rest is impossible. This is the case when:

  • leave of an employee who takes up work for the first time, because he / she acquires the right to leave at the end of each month worked, amounting to 1/12 of the amount he / she is entitled to after working a year,
  • postponing the date of leave due to interruption of the holiday leave, e.g. in the event of incapacity for work due to illness or other reasons mentioned in art. 166 of the Labor Code.

The employer should try to persuade the employee to take the vacation leave for 14 consecutive calendar days, because he is responsible for not giving the employee a vacation in accordance with the provisions of labor law, but cannot send the employee on vacation against his will. The Labor Code provides for only two situations in which the employer may force the employee to use the vacation leave, this applies to the overdue leave and the leave granted during the notice period.