Annual leave for a zero hour contract

A zero hour contract means the employer is not obliged to provide the worker with any work and the work which is offered, does not have to be accepted by the worker.

However, workers who are subject to a zero hour contract are entitled to the statutory minimum paid holiday of 5.6 weeks per year. An employer cannot request or ask the worker to ‘opt out’ or waive the legal right to annual leave.

If the worker works regular hours each week, they will be entitled to annual leave calculated as 5.6 x the hours worked weekly.

If the worker works different hours each week or irregular hours, the annual leave accrued will be calculated as the hours worked over the previous twelve normal working weeks. Any weeks which include periods of sickness, holiday or other absence must be excluded.

The government have a handy tool to help calculate the entitlement:

Holiday entitlement calculator (zero hours contracts)

Authors: Roxanne Bradley

Published: 15 Nov 2017


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