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, Negotiating Paid Holidays in Employee Contracts

When employees enter contracts with employers, there’s normally a back-and-forth in terms of negotiation. When negotiating paid holidays, you may need some guidance from civil litigation lawyers California.

Paid holidays can be a point of contention during negotiations. Our team can help you protect your business’s interests while meeting local requirements for time off. Here are some tips on determining when your employees are entitled to paid holidays.

Paid Holidays

There are many ways for a company to handle paid holidays. At some companies, paid holidays are determined on a company-wide level. At others, the employee negotiates specifically with the employer for specific paid holidays. This can also be covered in the letter of employment.

State laws can determine mandatory holidays, like Christmas, New Year’s Day, and Thanksgiving. However, employees aren’t legally entitled to get paid for these days off. Instead, that’s up to the employer’s discretion. 

Choosing Holiday Pay Rates

Holiday pay is up to the employer, and it isn’t required by law. Companies can choose the pay rates they offer on holidays. When employees work on a holiday, they can sometimes receive premium pay, which is more than their usual pay rate.

There’s no legal requirement for premium pay unless it results in overtime. Some companies pay standard fees, while others provide bonus pay.

Holiday Pay Laws

Private employers aren’t legally required to provide their employees with paid holidays or vacation time.

On the other hand, California law requires businesses to stay closed on certain days. Many companies pay their employees more when they work on those days, while others give them the day off without pay. There’s a lot of flexibility regarding holiday pay, so choose the option that fits your needs.

Religious Accommodations

Many religious holidays fall on days that aren’t considered state or national holidays. In this case, employees can request days off for religious observance. Employees need to make their requests in advance, but generally, employers are required to give their employees time off for religious holidays.

It’s often easiest when employees make these requests after being hired, so HR and managers can plan around it. 

Vacation Time

Vacation time is closely linked with holidays, and it often comes up in the same conversations. There’s no federal or California state requirement that employers provide paid or unpaid vacation time.

However, most employers do have policies on vacation time, and they must abide by those policies to avoid confusion for employees. Employers can determine when employees are allowed to take their vacation time and reject requests for paid time off. They may also require advance notice before time off so the company can plan around it.

Employers must follow the law when they deny their employees paid time off. If they deny requests in violation of California law, employees can file complaints and even request compensation for damages.

Earned vacation time is considered wages, which means it can’t be lost or forfeited. When an employee leaves the company for any reason, any vacation or paid time off must be included in their final paycheck.

Negotiating With Employees

When it comes to negotiation with employees, it’s good to get legal advice on the local laws on the subject. That way, you can find a satisfactory and legally-sound solution for both parties.

Before negotiation starts, you’ll likely have an idea of the paid holidays you plan to offer. During negotiation, you can discuss with individual employees their expectations regarding paid holidays.

When negotiating, it’s important to ask tough questions and justifications. When your employee is making reasonable requests within the scope of what you are prepared to offer, you can make a formal offer.

Employers tend to hold more power during negotiations, and ultimately, you make the final decision. However, you can build a positive working relationship with your employees by showing that you are willing to listen and consider their perspectives.

Negotiating with Unions

Holiday pay and vacation time are two common issues that come up in union negotiations. Many unions will bring up the topic of paid holidays for employees.

When negotiating with unions instead of individual employees, it’s important to get reliable legal advice. An employment lawyer can negotiate on your behalf and help you find a solution that works for your company.

Union negotiations can be lengthy and complex, which is why a dedicated legal expert is the perfect person to represent your business as it unfolds. Enlisting a lawyer will help you protect your interests. 

Benefits of Providing Paid Holidays

Proving paid holidays can benefit your company in many ways. It’s a great way to show that you care about your employees, which will help you attract skilled, qualified individuals who can improve your business performance.

Employees in managerial and senior positions expect paid holidays since they are standard for their roles. If you plan to hire any employees with paid holidays and vacation time, it’s a good idea to establish a company-wide policy. 

Exempt Employees

Exempt employees are salaried rather than paid by the hour, which means they aren’t subject to minimum wage laws. These employees don’t receive overtime pay, complicating their use of paid time off and vacation time.

On days when exempt employees do any work at all, they are entitled to their full pay. However, if they work a partial day, employers will often deduct vacation time for the time they took off work.

Dealing with vacation time for exempt employees can get complex. A legal expert can help you treat your exempt employees according to their status rather than hourly employees.

Consult an Employment Lawyer Today!

LibertyBell Law Group P.C. can help employers navigate paid holidays in employee contracts and company-wide policies. Our legal experts provide personalized guidance for all of our clients. We can help you handle negotiations with employees and unions over holiday pay and other issues.

Our goal is to help you protect your interests without leaving yourself vulnerable to lawsuits. Call today to schedule a free consultation with our legal experts!

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