Three common questions asked about leave to keep you out of the CCMA!

Tracey Ndlovu, Practical Guide To Human Resources Management, 06 May. 2015

Tags: ccma, annual leave, questions on leave, common questions about leave, labour and hr questions, leave

You're a manager and you've been dealing with leave for a long time. And you know everything there is to know about leave.


Well, according to the labour and hr questions we get every day, it seems many employers still don't deal with leave correctly. And because of this, they end up at the CCMA.

Keep reading below to see three common questions and answers about leave to help you manage leave correctly so you don't end up at the CCMA.

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Three common questions about leave

1. If my employee can't get to work, is it paid or unpaid leave?

One of my employees wasn't at work on Monday. She said she didn't have any transport. Do I have to give her paid leave or not?

You're not obliged to pay this employee as she didn't work. But, if you're going to debit the employee's annual leave entitlement you must pay the employee for annual leave. If not, you can make her take unpaid leave.

It's a good idea to advise her that a lack of transport isn't a valid reason for non-attendance at work and that the onus is on her to ensure that she's at work during normal work hours.

2. Can my employee take annual leave when he's resigned?

One of my employees resigned in the month of her final exams. She wants to forfeit her study leave days and take annual leave instead. Is she entitled to take annual leave during her notice period? Would we be in breach of the BCEA if I denied her request for annual or unpaid leave?

No, you wouldn't be in breach of the BCEA if you denied her request (Section 20(5) of the BCEA). You can't require or allow your employee to take annual leave during any period of notice of termination of employment. You'd be in breach of the BCEA if you allowed her to take annual leave.

But, there's nothing that prevents you from allowing her to take unpaid leave during the notice period.

3. Can we deduct leave pay for loan repayments?

Some of our staff members borrowed money from the company. They're now battling to pay it back and keep on asking for more time to repay the loan. Can we convert their leave pay as payment for the loans?

You can't pay employees instead of granting them annual leave unless you terminate their employment.

You can let your employees go on leave, but instead of paying them in full for the days off, you can deduct some of the debt from their remuneration. To do so, you must still comply with Section 34 of the BCEA, including the provision that total deductions may not exceed 25% of remuneration.

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Evan 2016-10-19 20:16:59

Hi, I'm in a sticky situation, resantly we started working 12 hours shifts 7 day's at work 7 day's out. I'm working for a government institution, now they have told us once you book off sick leave or take vacation leave that you must work back an 8 hour shift for each day on your off day's! Is this legal and can anyone point me in the right direction of facts and law regarding this please. Everyone in my working environment is demoralised because of this. They are also threatening to take away benefits if we don't sign the new instruction, competing us to comply with this.

Thateng 2016-09-07 15:59:35

Last year I went on an annual leave then when I came I worked 10 normal days and three Sundays but I was paid for Sundays only and the rest of the 10 days was not paid. Is it ok like that?

Alecia 2015-06-03 13:14:23

Does an Employee who has been booked for 80 days for IOD still qualify for all his annual leave when he returns ie: 1,25days per month?


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