Public holidays and annual leave update

15 October 2019

Stu AdamsonThe number of shopping days before Christmas is dwindling.  Summer is wedding season as well.  It’s time to get the Christmas leave arrangements in place.

Prompt staff to request any annual leave early, so you can plan your staffing over the break.  Identify which staff actually have an annual leave entitlement.  Some may ask to “cash up” some annual leave.  There are a few rules around that, so call us if you are unsure.

The timing of annual leave is best done by agreement, with the employer being required to act reasonably.  In the absence of reasonable agreement though, the employer can give 14 days notice to the employee that they must take leave.

Labour Day on 28 October is the last national public holiday before Christmas.

Marlborough and Canterbury have anniversary days on 4 and 15 November respectively.

Westland and the Chatham’s have their anniversary day on 2 December.

Christmas Eve is Tuesday, 24 December.  Have a think about any last-minute post, courier and banking needs.

Have you got security arrangements in place?  Check your CCTV’s are working.

Christmas Day is Wednesday and Boxing Day Thursday, 26 December.  Friday, 27 December is a usual working day but many staff will target that day as an annual leave day off to extend the festive break.

New Years Eve is Tuesday, 31 December.  It is not a public holiday, however Wednesday, 1 January and Thursday, 2 January are.  Friday is a working day again, but being an isolated single day, may be an annual leave target date for those that want to extend the break.

A reminder that public holidays that are “otherwise working days” for anyone that works them are paid at time and a half for any actual hours worked and the employee gets an alternative paid day off at an agreed time.  The rules around casual workers may differ.  Check your employment agreements and call us for a quick chat.

If you are planning a Christmas function, remember your HSE obligations and look after your people.  Both at the function and on their way home.

Don’t forget to buy local for your Christmas supplies.  Even better, support each other as members.  There are a lot of you!


Stu Adamson | Solicitor


Legal Team


David Browne | Senior Solicitor | 03 456 1812 | 021 225 6938 |

Adam Siwerski | Solicitor | 03 456 1809 | 021 756 809 |

Stu Adamson | Solicitor | 021 197 4603 | 

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