Can you get double pay for working over Christmas? Your rights explained

MOST of us will get to tuck into the turkey on Christmas day on a well deserved day off – but many have to clock into work a normal.

Will those who have to show up be paid double for their time though? We reveal your rights.

If you have a regular 9-5 Monday to Friday job, you'll find Christmas doesn't interrupt your schedule much anyway.

Even if you've got one more day to go tomorrow and your counting down the hours until home time, you'll still have time to make it out to the pub for a pint on Christmas eve, like other Fridays before it.

Many will break up for a week's holiday in between Christmas and New Year too.

But this weekend could be an issue for some workers who regularly have Saturday and Sunday shifts.

If you usually work bank holidays too, you may be required to work on the Monday and Tuesday after Christmas – as these are classed as public holidays.

The same goes for after New Year's the following week, as that first Monday back is a bank holiday as well.

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Will I be paid double?

It all depends on your employer.

There's no hard and fast rule that requires them to pay you double on the day, but they may adopt the festive spirit of goodwill and do so anyway.

You'll have to check your contract to see if that's something that's offered.

You can always ask your boss if the bonus could be arranged, but it's not guaranteed they'll say yes – if they're not feeling like a Scrooge this year they might agree, but it will likely depend on circumstance.

It's not unheard of that staff will get a cash reward for the hours they do on the day, last year Aldi was praised by shoppers for giving staff an amazing 10% Christmas bonus.

But overall, whether you get paid double or asked to work at all, depends on the terms and conditions of your employment.

Sometimes you can get paid extra for working bank holidays, no matter when they fall in the year.

But because Christmas Day and Boxing Day are over the weekend they couldn't fall under this agreement.

Monday 27 and Tuesday 28 are substitute bank holidays this year, so if you have to work these, and would normally be paid double then they could be good little earners in the limbo week between Christmas and New Year.

Will I be forced to work on Christmas Day?

This will also be something you'll need to spot in your contract.

Usually, the rules around working on the most important days of the festive period depend on how your office treats bank holidays.

You'll automatically get the days off if you wouldn't normally work on the weekend this year anyway.

But if you often work weekends or do shift work that can include Saturdays or Sundays, you could be asked to work as normal.

That said, many workplaces shut between Christmas and New Year, so you might be ok, depending on your sector and employer.

If you work in an industry that's open over Christmas, such as hospitality, and your contract includes weekend work, you would have had to book Christmas day as annual leave if you wanted to spend them as family.

At the same time, your boss can't force you to work more than your contracted hours, but sometimes wording in a contract can be vague.

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