Impact of the coronavirus on annual holiday
The employer’s option of ordering employees to take their annual holiday, thus preventing them from having to arrive at the workplace due to the coronavirus situation, has been discussed at some workplaces. According to the Finnish Annual Holidays Act, when determining the timing of the holiday, the employer must notify the employees of this no later than one month before the start of the holiday. If this is not possible, notification of the timing of the holiday may be given at a later date. However, the notification must be given at least two weeks before the start of the holiday.
In addition, the employer may only order employees to take holidays that are included in the current holiday season. Therefore, at the moment, the employer may only order holidays included in the ongoing winter holiday season. The winter holiday season will end 30 April 2020.
With the start of the summer holiday season on 2 May 2020, the employer will be able to order employees to take their summer holidays by complying with the aforementioned notification period. The usual annual holiday pay is paid for the duration of the annual holiday.
The coronavirus situation may also affect the accrual of the employee’s annual holiday. In the event of an authoritative order issued to prevent the virus from spreading, annual holiday is accrued normally. If the employee is laid off full-time, annual holiday is accrued from a maximum of 30 working days during the layoff period.
If the employee is laid off part-time, annual holiday is accrued from a maximum of 6 months. If such work arrangements continue uninterrupted after the end of the holiday credit year, the new 6-month period will be considered to start after the end of the holiday credit year.