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Vacation & Vacation Pay

To qualify for an annual vacation, an employee must have been employed with the employer for at least 12 months and have worked at least 90% of the available working hours. For employees with less than 15 years of consecutive service with the same employer, the vacation must be of at least 2 weeks duration and the employee may choose to take it in either 1 two-week period or 2 one-week periods. The employee must be permitted to take this vacation within 10 months of the time they qualify for it. The employer must give the employee at least two weeks written notice of when the vacation is to be taken.

Vacation pay is calculated at 4% of the employee's gross wages for the period in respect of which the vacation is being given. This payment must be made at least one day before the vacation commences. If an employee does not qualify for an annual vacation, there is still an entitlement to vacation pay - provided the employee has been employed by the employer for at least 5 work days. An employee who qualifies for vacation pay must be paid the vacation pay within 1 week of the termination of employment.

An employee who has been continuously employed with the same employer for 15 years is entitled to 3 weeks annual vacation. Vacation pay after 15 years continuous employment is calculated at 6 percent of the total wages for the period in respect of which the vacation is being given.

  1. Who gets Vacation pay?
  2. How many weeks of vacation does an employee receive?
  3. When must an employee receive vacation pay?
  4. How is vacation pay calculated?
  5. Are there any deductions to be taken from vacation pay?
  6. Do employees, while on vacation, receive their regular wages plus their vacation pay?
  7. When can vacation be taken by employees?
  8. Can the employer cancel an employee’s vacation if it was previously agreed to?

 

1. Who gets Vacation pay?

Any employee who has been employed for 5 work days or more.

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2. How many weeks of vacation does an employee receive?

Two weeks, if the employee has worked at least 90% of the available working hours in a continuous 12 month period. After 15 years with the same employer, the vacation time is 3 weeks.

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3. When must an employee receive vacation pay?

At least one day before going on vacation or within 1 week of termination. Vacation pay may also be paid each pay period as long as the employee is advised and the amount of vacation pay is indicated in the employer's payroll.

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4. How is vacation pay calculated?

Vacation pay is calculated as 4% of gross wages, including commissions and overtime. Vacation pay is calculated as 6% of gross earnings for employees with 15 years continuous employment with the same employer.

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5. Are there any deductions to be taken from vacation pay?

Vacation pay is subject to all statutory deductions, i.e.; Employment Insurance premiums, Income Tax and Canada Pension Plan contributions.

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6. Do employees, while on vacation, receive their regular wages plus their vacation pay?

Employees are entitled to receive only their 4% (or 6%) vacation pay before going on vacation.

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7. When can vacation be taken by employees?

The employer shall give the employee at least 2 weeks written notice of when vacation is to commence and it can be taken in one unbroken 2 week period or 2 unbroken periods of 1 week. An employee entitled to 3 weeks vacation shall be permitted to take the vacation in one unbroken period of 3 weeks, in 2 unbroken periods of 2 weeks and 1 week respectively or in 3 unbroken periods of one week.

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8. Can the employer cancel an employee’s vacation if it was previously agreed to?

The employer may cancel an employee’s vacation but must compensate the employee for reasonable expenses that cannot be recovered by the employee as a result of the vacation being cancelled.

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