Renfrewshire Council

Buy additional annual leave (BAAL)

What BAAL is, how to buy additional annual leave, who can buy it, conditions of the scheme, and the impact it will have on your salary.

What buying additional annual leave is

As part of the BAAL scheme, you can buy up to six weeks additional annual leave on top of your current annual leave allowance. 

The extra days that you buy are taken out of your gross salary (before your tax and national insurance).  

The overall cost of the additional annual leave is split over 12 months, with the deductions starting in April 2024. 

This year's scheme is open from Thursday 18 January 2024 until Thursday 15 February 2024.

Who can buy additional annual leave

All employees can apply to join the scheme apart from those on: 

  • term-time contracts 
  • teaching contracts
  • sessional or seasonal contracts and casuals. 

Employees on temporary and fixed term contracts can apply if their contracts expire after 31 March 2025.  

Employees who have expressed an interest in VR/VER may also buy additional annual leave, providing that they are not leaving employment prior to 31 March 2025. 

What the impact on your salary is

Buying additional annual leave is a salary sacrifice scheme. 

If you buy one week's additional annual leave, then it will cost you one week's salary. Your gross salary (before tax and national insurance) for the 12 months period will be reduced by the equivalent of one week's salary.  

The reduction in your salary will be calculated based on your gross salary point at the time you request to buy additional annual leave. 

What the impact on your pension is

State pension 

The BAAL scheme may impact on your state pension entitlement as the salary sacrifice reduces the earnings on which your National Insurance contributions are charged.  

Further information on the state pension is available at GOV.UK

Local Government Pension Scheme 

Under the 2018 Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS), there is a requirement for pension contributions to be paid for the first 30 days of an unpaid authorised absence. This means that employee pension contributions will be taken based on your current gross salary before BAAL deductions are made. 

There is no longer a requirement for employees to apply to make additional pension contributions (APC's).

How to apply for the BAAL scheme

If you want to buy additional annual leave, you'll need to request the number of weeks you want on Business World.  

Check the user guide on how to submit a BAAL request on Business World.  [385KB]

The closing date to apply is Thursday 15 February 2024. Due to the automated process in place, we will not be in a position to accept any late applications.

Your line manager will need to review and approve your request in line with: 

  • the operational needs of your service 
  • the current carry over of annual leave guidance
  • your current annual leave entitlement for 2024. 

You will receive a notification on Business World that will let you know if your request has been approved or declined.  

If your request has been approved, the notification will include information about the cost of the BAAL period and deduction amounts.   

If your request has been declined, your line manager will have a conversation with you about the reasons for the decline. 

If you are a line manager, check this guidance on how to approve or decline requests for BAAL.  

Conditions of the Buy Annual Leave Scheme

If your request has been approved 

Additional annual leave approved through the scheme must be used before an employee's normal annual leave entitlement (including any carry over of annual leave from the previous year).

All other annual leave should be taken in line with the Council's Terms and Conditions of Service as detailed in the Statement of Particulars and in line with the Carry Over of Annual Leave Guidance.

If your parental situation changes 

You can still request to buy additional annual leave if you are on: 

  • maternity 
  • paternity 
  • adoption 
  • parental or shared parental leave. 

If you are being paid above the statutory amount, the deductions may continue during your leave.   

If you are only being paid a statutory amount, no deduction to your salary will be made during this leave. The deduction will resume when you return to work and until the outstanding balance has been cleared. 

If you do not return to work, any outstanding balance owed will be deducted from your final salary and you will not benefit from tax or national insurance relief. 

If your contract changes 

If you change job during the year, your new line manager will be able to see your annual leave balance, including any additional leave you have bought. The deduction in your salary for the additional annual leave will continue as per the salary sacrifice agreement. 

If you are off on long-term sick 

You can still request to buy additional annual leave if you are off long-term sick. The deduction in salary in exchange for the additional annual leave will continue during the period of your sick leave. If you are in receipt of Statutory Sick Pay only, no deduction will be made in respect of the additional annual leave. 

Where the deduction in salary is suspended, it will resume when you return to work and until the outstanding balance has been cleared. If you do not return to work, any outstanding balance owed will be deducted from their final salary and will not benefit from tax or national insurance relief. 

If you leave the council 

If you leave the council before you have paid for your additional annual leave, you will need to take your additional leave before you leave. 

If you have any outstanding balance for additional annual leave you have bought, this will be deducted from your final salary. It will not include tax or national insurance relief. 

When you can opt out of the scheme 

You can opt out of the scheme if you experience a lifestyle event (an exceptional event that has a major impact on your lifestyle), some examples include, but are not limited to:  

  • marriage or civil partnership 
  • divorce or separation 
  • birth or adoption of a child 
  • death of your partner or dependant 
  • starting or returning from maternity, paternity, adoption leave or being absent for an extended period of sick leave 
  • significant reduction in your working hours 
  • redeployment. 

If you experience one of these circumstances and request to opt out of the scheme you will still be required to take the additional annual leave purchased and any outstanding balance will be deducted from your next salary. It will not include and tax or national insurance relief. 

You can email employeebenefits@renfrewshire.gov.uk if you are looking to opt out.  

Worked examples

 
Example 1Example 2
Full Time Employee on 35 hour week, paid 4 weekly, request for 1 weeks BAALPart time employee 15 hours per week, paid weekly, request for 1 weeks BAAL
Grade 6, spine Point 46Grade 2, Spine Point 21
Salary £29,856.97Full Time Equivalent Salary for a 37 hour week =  £23,710.90
Weekly Wage = £572.60Weekly Wage (based on 37hrs ) = £454.73  / Weekly Wage based on 15hrs = £184.35
BAAL deduction will be £44.05 from each 4 weekly pay (£572.60/13 pay periods)BAAL deduction will be £3.54 from each weekly pay (£184.35/52 pay periods)

Please note that should your hourly rate after deductions for BAAL fall below the current National Minimum Wage ( This rate is currently £10.42 per hour) your request will be declined.

If you need any additional information about buying additional annual leave 

If you have any questions relating to the BAAL guidance, please refer to the attached guidance and FAQs [226KB] or speak to your line manager in the first instance. 

If you're thinking about applying, but you need more info to help you decide if it's right for you, we'll be hosting a RenTalk at 2pm on Wednesday 31 January.  

You can also email employeebenefits@renfrewshire.gov.uk if you have any questions about the scheme.