By Daniel Wood
The Acas Guide appears to hold the answers.
Millions of people will be working on the biggest holiday of the year.
Emergency workers will be on the rota for Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, as will people in the hospitality, retail and other industries.
Not many people want to work on these days, but is it possible to refuse? And if you do work, does your employer have to pay you extra?
Susan Clews, Acas Chief Executive, said: “As millions of people across the country go onto enjoy the festive period leaving the workplace behind as they do, millions will also be working to keep the country running and the mince pies being served.
“It’s important that at this time of the year employees and employers are able to have sensible discussions about working over the holidays and that they know what is and isn’t within their rights.”
Do I have to work on Christmas Day, Boxing Day or New Year’s Day?
It depends on your contract and your religion.
Your employer does not have to give you time off on a bank holiday or at Christmas if they’re not included in your holiday entitlement.
On the contrary, if your employer is closed over Christmas you may be required to take it as a holiday.
If you are a practicing Christian your employer must let you have the day off for religious observance.
Am I entitled to extra pay for working on Christmas Day, Boxing Day or New Year’s Day?
Only if it is part of your contract. Some employers will pay you double time but there is no legal requirement to do so.
If your employer needs you to take a holiday, they need to tell you at least twice as many days before as the number of days they need you to take.
Before making a change to the way employees take holidays, your employer might need to consider whether there has been custom and practice of it before.
You can read the full Acas guide here.