Do we get a replacement holiday if a public holiday falls on Saturday? - Labour Law Blog

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Sep 19, 2017

Do we get a replacement holiday if a public holiday falls on Saturday?

Are employees entitled to a replacement holiday if a public holiday falls on a Saturday? Not every employee, but those on rotational shiftwork and are earning below RM2,000 per month can claim a rollover holiday.

Companies are required to pay public holiday rate or grant a replacement holiday to their employees on rotation shifts, if they work on a public holiday that falls on a Saturday.

A spokesperson from the Labour Department, however, said this only applies to those whose salaries are below RM2,000 per month, as they are bounded by the Employment Act 1955.

She added that the National Day (Aug 31), Malaysia Day (Sept 16), Labour Day (May 1), the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's birthday and the states' Sultan's birthday are not replaceable public holidays.

She explained that non-replaceable public holidays are those that require employers to either grant employees an off day on the said public holiday or pay them the company's public holiday rate.

"All companies are required to give a minimum of 11 public holidays in a calendar year. However, five of those are not replaceable. Meaning, if employees are asked to work on one of those days that falls on a Saturday, they must be paid a public holiday rate.

"For all other Saturday public holidays, the employers have the option to grant them any other day as paid holiday in substitution," she told theSun recently.

The spokesperson said employers who do not comply would be reprimanded and may be compounded or prosecuted under Section 100 (3) of the Employment Act, upon conviction.

For staff with a pay of RM2,000 per month and above, she said they are subjected to the collective agreement between them and their companies.

She also reiterated that those working the conventional five-day work week are not entitled for a replacement holiday or to be paid a public holiday day rate if any of them falls on a Saturday.

There has been confusion among some Malaysians, especially those working the non-conventional five-day week, over whether they are entitled to a public holiday pay or a replacement leave should a public holiday fall on a Saturday.

This month alone, two public holidays are on a Saturday, namely the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V's birthday (Sept 9), and Malaysia Day (Sept 16).

Source : The Star
Amar Shah Mohsen

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