Christmas/New Year Holidays - The Basics

  • This year the public holidays are straight forward.  Because 25 & 26 December and 1 & 2 January are not weekend days, the holidays are observed on the days they fall.

  • Therefore employees who would otherwise be working on these days are entitled to a holiday paid at their relevant daily pay (or *average daily pay) in respect of each such day (note that some collective agreements provide for an alternative holiday even if the employee is rostered off on the holiday).
  • Employees who work on any part of a public holiday are entitled to be paid the greater of the portion of the employee’s relevant daily pay that relates to the time actually worked on the day; and the appropriate portion of their relevant daily pay or *average daily pay (less any penal rates) that relates to the time actually worked on the day, plus half that amount again.  If the day would otherwise be a working day  employees are also entitled to an alternative holiday on pay at a later date.

  • Employees on standby on a public holiday are also entitled to an alternative holiday even if they are not actually required to perform any work, provided the nature of the restriction imposed by the on-call condition on the employee’s freedom of action is such that, for all practical purposes, the employee has not had a whole holiday.

*Note: The first obligation is to pay relevant daily pay (i.e. what the employee would have been paid had they worked on the day).  If it is not possible or practicable to determine RDP, or the employee’s daily pay varies within the pay period when the holiday falls, then average daily pay applies (i.e. the gross earnings for the prior 52 weeks divided by the number or whole or part days on which those earnings were earned).