Renfrewshire Council

Taking annual leave during sickness absence and sickness during annual leave

When you can take annual leave during sickness, being sick when on annual leave, how much leave you have when returning from sickness, how this works for term time working.

You can take paid annual leave while on sickness absence in discussion with your manager. It's your choice, and there is no pressure to do so. It can provide you with some days of half or full pay when your entitlement to Occupational Sick Pay (OSP) or Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) changes or ends. You can phase the paid annual leave requested over a time period, if helpful. Requests are normally limited to the remaining untaken leave you have built up in the year.  

Your manager will need to contact HR&OD to arrange for paid annual leave to be taken if you are not able to request this on Business World. It's important to have some leave to take on your return to work. This will allow for rest periods during the remainder of the year.

Any annual leave you take during a sickness absence period does not end the absence period for managing absence purposes, unless you return to work immediately after your annual leave. Annual leave days will be recorded on Business World and Imperago as normal. 

Sickness during annual leave 

If you're sick during a period of annual leave, you can still report sick. You must let your manager know as soon as possible about your sickness. 

You must get a fit note for any sick days during a period of annual leave, even if this is for less than 7 days. You cannot self-certify for sickness during a period of annual leave. This will allow you to take the cancelled annual leave days at a later stage  

If you're unwell during a public holiday or on a designated 'day of no work requirement,' you will not receive any additional annual leave for those days.

Returning from sickness absence

When you return from sickness absence, you'll still have your remaining annual leave entitlement for that year. 

You'll normally lose any annual leave not taken by the end of the leave year if you do not request it or run out of days available to take it in. 

Your line manager will make sure you are able to take at least your statutory leave entitlement for the year. This is currently pro-rata to 28 days which includes both annual leave and public holidays you take in a leave year. 

It does not include any bought annual leave days or annual leave days you may have carried forward from the previous leave year.  

You can carry forward outstanding annual leave entitlement into the next leave year in discussion with your line manager if you:

  • have 5 years' service or more which allows you to carry over 5 days leave (pro-rata) 
  • are unable to take your remaining annual leave entitlement on returning to work for exceptional operational reasons 
  • are unable to request or take your statutory leave entitlement for the year for any reason.  

The difference between your statutory leave entitlement and actual leave days taken (including public holidays) can be carried forward. Actual leave days taken does not include any bought annual leave days (BAAL) or annual leave days you may have carried forward from the previous leave year. 

If more than one leave year is affected this carry forward is subject to a maximum of 18 months built up statutory leave. This balance should be taken first in the new leave year. 

Your manager can contact HR&OD for guidance on your annual leave entitlement during or following sickness absence, and if your balance needs to be adjusted on Business World. 

Term time working hours 

If you work term time hours only, you receive payment for your annual leave entitlement that is averaged out over all your pay dates in the year.  

You'll receive full payment for your annual and statutory leave entitlement if you are in receipt of full pay while on sickness absence. 

If you move onto half pay or no pay during a sickness absence period, your manager will check if you are due any outstanding holiday pay on your return to work.

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