One of the biggest headaches in employing people is getting HR policies right. If you fail to have basic documentation in place, even in very small companies, it can cause untold hassles, headaches and much worse. So why take the risk?
Save time and money by using our ready made free policy template in your business. This policy has been written by experienced HR professionals and is updated regularly to take into account changes in UK employment legislation. It’s as simple as downloading this document and letting your employees know about it.
Other Authorised Leave Policy
In addition to annual leave (holidays) and common types of leave, such as maternity, paternity or carer’s leave, there are other commitments for which employees might be entitled to take time off work.
Not all will necessarily be paid for by the organisation. Examples of time off for other reasons include:
- to accompany a worker to a disciplinary or grievance hearing
- for employee representatives
- to accompany an employee at a flexible working hearing
- Jury service
- for occupational pension scheme trustees and directors of trustee companies
- for public duties
- for job hunting or to arrange training when facing redundancy
- for safety representatives
For your information, details are given below of the most common circumstances which might apply to you at sometime during your employment with the organisation. These cover:
- Time Off for Public Duties
- Jury Service
- Membership of Reserve Forces
- Compassionate Leave
Further information regarding other statutory time off is available from the HR Manager.
Request and Authorisation of Leave
Any request for time off for authorised leave should be discussed and agreed in advance with your line manager. Management will do their best to accommodate reasonable requests and they will also take into account individual circumstances and the operational requirements of your role and the business.
Time off for public duties
If you hold any of the following public positions, you have the right to reasonable time off from work to enable you to perform the duties associated with them.
- a magistrate, sometimes known as a justice of the peace
- a local councillor
- a school governor
- a member of a policy authority
- a member of any statutory tribunal (e.g. an Employment Tribunal)
- a member of the managing or governing body of an educational establishment
- a member of a school council or board in Scotland
- a member of the General Teaching Councils for England and Wales
- a member of the Environment Agency or the Scottish Environment Protection agency
- in England and Wales, a member of the prison independent monitoring boards
If you qualify, you are allowed reasonable time off to go to meetings or to carry out your duties. The time must be agreed with your manager beforehand and they can refuse your request if it is unreasonable. Any agreed arrangements will be confirmed in writing to you.
A specific amount of time off is not laid down in law.
Whether your time off is classed as ‘reasonable’ will depend on:
- what your duties are
- the time you need to carry them out
- the impact on the organisation’s business
- how much time off you have already had for public duties or trade union duties
Payment for time off for public duties
There is no statutory obligation to pay you for time off for public duties.
If you are called up for jury service, the Company must allow you time off for this.
You can ask for your jury service to be deferred. You can only do this once and for no more than 12 months from the original date.
If you want to be excluded from jury service altogether you need to write to the Jury Central Summoning Bureau setting out your reasons why. However, unless you have already served as a juror within the previous two years, your call-up is unlikely to be deferred.
What to do if you are called up for jury service
If you have been called up for jury service you should:
- let your manager know how long you will need off and what arrangements need to be made for cover in your absence
- hand over a copy of the Confirmation of Jury Service letter you receive from the court to your Manager.
Payment for time off for jury service
The Company does not have to pay you whilst you are on jury service but you can claim for travel and food expenses and for loss of earnings from the Court.
You should ask the Payroll Manager to fill out a Certificate of Loss of Earnings to claim for loss of earnings. There are limits on the amount that you can claim. You can find out more about allowances for jury service on the Her Majesty’s Courts Service website.
Membership of the Reserve Forces
The Company is keen to show a commitment to social responsibility and allow time off for employees who are in the Reserve Forces. Reservist members have special employment protection if called up.
If you are a member of the Reserve Forces, you must advise your manager and/or the HR Manager of this. You should also advise your manager of any training commitments so that arrangements for paid or unpaid leave can be agreed between you and the Company.
If you are mobilised, you should advise your manager immediately of this. Your manager will then inform you of your rights and those of the Company whilst you are mobilised and upon your return to work after mobilisation.
Further details regarding Reserve Forces can be found on the Ministry of Defence’s Supporting Britain’s Reservists and Employers website: www.sabre.mod.uk. or the SaBRE helpline, 0800 389 5459 (open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm; closed weekends and bank holidays).
Compassionate leave – Bereavement
In the sad event of the death of a family member, the Company will grant compassionate leave to allow you time off to make funeral arrangements, as well as to attend a funeral, as follows:
- Death of immediate family member Up to 3 working days paid leave
- Death of a non-immediate family member Up to 1 working day paid leave
If the funeral is overseas then you should discuss and agree any arrangements for either paid or unpaid compassionate leave with your manager.
The company recognises that each family is different so the definition of immediate and non-immediate may vary from case to case. Therefore we will take into account individual circumstances and exercise discretion when considering compassionate leave requests. However, usually, “immediate” family means spouse, parents, children or siblings. If this is different in your case, please discuss in confidence with your manager.
This policy/procedure is for information only; it does not form part of your terms and conditions of employment and may be subject to revision from time to time.
Disclaimer: The recommendations should only be used as guidelines. Please only select the portions that apply to your organisation. Neither the author nor joinair.com will assume legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information provided in whole or in part within this article.
This template is ready to be tailored to your organisation’s needs and should be considered a starting point for setting up your organisation’s employment policies. Edit the sections in red as appropriate.