Annual Leave + Public Holiday While Still Open

Hi ozbargainers, got a question,

According to FWC, public holidays are to be paid per normal when on annual leave which is the standard set in the NES. What confused me is if this still applies even if the store is open.


Mr OzB works in retail with flexible roster of varying hours on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday and requests leave from Saturday 5th of October to Friday 11th of October. For Mr OzB, this would be 3 working days however this period also falls on a public holiday (labour day) there for being 2 days + 1 public holiday.

According to the NES he will be paid 2 days annual leave and 1 regular pay for part time. However the store is still open as per normal.

Does Mr OzB still receive 2+1 days worth of pay or does he receive 3 days worth of annual leave instead?
Does this example still apply on a weekend too or would the day liue be accounted for? Example Australia Day 26th Jan 2019 falls on Saturday while the public holiday is on Monday 28th of Jan.
And does your award/eba have any say?


  • -2 votes

    What did Fairwork say?

    • -1 vote

      Too formal. Not looking punish anyone


        Someone will get punished for you asking a question to a call centre?

        If Mr Ozb's is unlucky his employer might deny the annual leave as it falls during a busy period when he is needed. Perhaps he will get paid penalty rates instead.

        Paid public holidays are a seperate NES entitlement. If a public holidays falls within a period of annual leave it doesn't get taken from your annual leave. An award or agreement won't change this as it's from the NES. The store being open or not is irrelevant.

  • +2 votes

    If a public holiday occurs why you are on Annual Leave its paid as a standard day (as you did not work) but does not come from your annual leave allowance.

    So for example if you worked Mon-Fri and took this week off as annual leave, it would be 4 days Annual and 1 day paid leave (good friday)

  • +1 vote

    I thought you'd have to be full time. Ie, If you normally work on a certain day and it falls on public holiday, then that's fine. But if you are a casual and your times change quite often, that's a bit of a grey area (ie, you can be not paid).

  • +1 vote

    In my experience, public holidays are public holidays.

    Mr. Ozb has taken 2 days of annual leave and a day he wasn't going to be there anyhow, the public holiday, is just a normal, paid, day off.

    Which is why most people who've great bosses are taking the Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday off for a total of 10 days off work for 3 days annual leave over the easter break :)


    I think the important info is flexible roster or set roster. If the contract stipulates X hours every Monday then on days when Monday is a public holiday but the store is open Mr Ozb will either:
    A) work and get paid public holiday rates
    B) not work and get normal rates, with no reduction in any leave balances

    In your scenario, option B has been taken.

    However, if the contract is flexible and doesn’t say which day of the week and how many hours on these days will be worked, then there may be issues.

  • +1 vote

    I don't understand why it matters whether the store is open or not?

    If you would normally work on a day a public holiday falls on you get paid for it.

  • +3 votes

    Whether the store is opened or not is not relevant. Here are the scenarios; (assuming your are part time contract hours on the agreed days)

    1. You got to work Monday (Public holiday), Tuesday & Wednesday. You get paid penalty rate for the 1 day + normal rate for the other 2.

    2. You don't go to work on that Monday, but got to work Tuesday & Wednesday. You get paid 3 days of normal rate.

    3. You are taking annual leave for those 3 days. You get paid 3 days of normal rate. However only have to use 2 days of annual leave as Monday is a public holiday. .

    • +1 vote

      Yep, this is actually a really simple case. It's being made really confusing but just focus on these facts:

      • Most situations you don't have take annual leave on public holidays since there isn't any work so you don't go in, but if the workplace is open you can take annual leave which you are paid the normal hourly rate since you never worked on the public holiday.

      • In most part-time scenarios rosters are worked out beforehand, I'm sure you can just talk to your manager about taking the day off. If you can't make up the hours needed for that week, you can take annual leave to get there.


    Check the award or enterprise agreement that applies to Mr Ozb. Join your union. They will definitely be able to give you the right advice.

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