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Christmas and New Year 2016/2017

  • Christmas Day is on Sunday 25th December 2016 and Boxing Day is Monday 26th December 2016.
  • New Years Day is Sunday 1st January 2017, with the day after being Monday 2nd January 2017.
  • If Sunday is a normal working day for an employee, then the Sunday is a public holiday for that employee.
  • If the employee does not usually work on a Sunday, then the following Tuesday becomes a public holiday.
  • To check the dates in future years, see the Public Holiday Calendar FAQ.

See Also
Christmas and New Year 2016/2017
Christmas and New Year 2015/2016
Christmas and New Year 2014/2015
Christmas and New Year 2013/2014
Christmas and New Year 2012/2013

The following is the advice from the Employment Relations Service.


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  • If the holiday falls on a weekend, and your employee doesn't normally work on the weekend, the holiday is transferred to the following Monday or Tuesday so that the employee still gets a paid day off.
  • If the holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday and the employee normally works on that day, then the holiday remains at the traditional day and the employee is entitled to that day off on pay.

An employee cannot be entitled to more than four public holidays over the Christmas and New Year period, regardless of his or her work pattern.

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Christmas and New Year's Day this year fall on a Sunday. I understand that in this case, Tuesday becomes the public holiday. In my business, the staff work on all three of these days. Do I have to pay them time and a half for the Sunday, or the Monday and Tuesday, or all three?

First, determine which of the days would be a normal working day for the employee if it were not Christmas. Once determined, the following applies

  • If the same staff member usually works all three days, Sunday are Monday are the public holidays. For working those two days you pay time and a half, plus allow the two alternative holidays. For them, Tuesday is not a public holiday.
  • If a staff member works just the Sunday and Monday, or just the Monday and Tuesday, then in both these cases, both days are public holidays. Pay time and a half and allow a day in lieu for each day worked.
  • If an employee usually works just the Sunday and Tuesday, then only the Sunday is a public holiday. The Tuesday is not a public holiday for this employee, because the Tuesday only becomes a public holiday if the employee does not usually work on the Sunday.
  • If an employee would only usually work one of the days between Sunday and Tuesday, then irrespective of which day it is, it is to be treated as a public holiday.

This is covered by Section 45 which has changed the handling of the four public holidays at Christmas and New Year.

Section 45
Transfer of public holidays over Christmas and New Year

(1) For the purposes of this subpart, if any of the public holidays listed in section 44(1)(a) to (d) (christmas and new year)

(a) falls on a Saturday and the day would otherwise be a working day for the employee, the public holiday must be treated as falling on that day:

(b) falls on a Saturday and the day would not otherwise be a working day for the employee, the public holiday must be treated as falling on the following Monday:

(c) falls on a Sunday and the day would otherwise be a working day for the employee, the public holiday must be treated as falling on that day:

(d) falls on a Sunday and the day would not otherwise be a working day for the employee, the public holiday must be treated as falling on the following Tuesday.

(2) To avoid doubt, this section does not entitle an employee to more than 4 public holidays for the days listed in section 44(1)(a) to (d) (christmas and new year).

What this section effectively says is

  • If the Christmas or New Year holidays fall on a Saturday or Sunday, and the employee normally works on a Saturday or Sunday, then the Saturday or Sunday are public holidays.
  • If an employee does not usually work on the Saturday or Sunday, then the public holidays are the following Monday or Tuesday.
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My employee works Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We are closing on Sunday - Christmas Day but will be working every other day. What does the employee get?

  • Your employee normally works Sunday, but not Monday or Tuesday.
  • Therefore the Monday and Tuesday days are irrelevant.
  • They are not working on Sunday because you are closed. Therefore the employee takes that day as a public holiday, and gets paid what they would normally earn on that day.

More on public holidays

Public Holiday Entitlements
Ace Payroll receives many calls immediately after every public holiday, asking whether a particular employee is entitled to be paid for the public holiday more..
Public Holiday Taken
Use this method for an employee who did not work on the public holiday, but would have worked had the day not been a public holiday more..
Public Holiday Worked
Use this method for an employee who works at any time on a public holiday more..
Public Holiday Calendar
A facility in Ace Payroll to check when public holidays fall in this and future years more..
Christmas and New Year 2016/2017
Working out public holiday entitlements during the 2016/2017 Christmas and New Year holiday period more..
Easter Sunday
Easter Sunday is not a public holiday, but shops cannot open more..
Easter Holidays 2016
The dates of Good Friday and Easter Monday this year more..
Waitangi Day
Waitangi Day commemorates the signing of a treaty at Waitangi on 6 February 1840 more..
Anzac Day
Anzac Day is held on 25 April each year to commemorate New Zealanders killed in war more..
Queen's Birthday
The Queen's Birthday is always observed in New Zealand on the first Monday in June more..
Labour Day
Labour Day is always observed on the 4th Monday in October more..
Southland Anniversary Day
Southland Anniversary Day is always on Easter Tuesday more..
Default Provincial Anniversary Day
Select the provincial anniversary day observed by the majority of your employees to make it the default more..
Payment For Sick Leave If Taken On A Public Holiday
You are not required to pay your staff time and a half if they call in sick on a public holiday they would have otherwise worked more..
Alphabetical Index
The Ace Payroll alphabetical index provides links to all documentation more..
Ace Payroll FAQ Contents
All the most common Ace Payroll questions grouped by categories in a short table of key words more..
Ace Payroll Frequently Asked Questions
All the most common questions we are asked at Ace Payroll listed in a question format and grouped by category more..

More on holiday pays

Cashing Up Holiday Pay
From 1st April 2011 it is legal for an employee to cash up to one weeks annual leave each year more..
Understanding Termination Accruals
Handling of accrued holiday pay upon termination can be confusing. Ace Payroll explains the concept of accruals and demonstrates how termination pay is calculated more..
Holiday 52 Week History
It is not absolutely necessary to enter a full 52 week earnings history for correct holiday pay calculation more..
Holiday Pay - Daily Rates
An explanation of the calculation of a daily rate for an employee taking holidays after a full years service more..
Leave Calendar
Use the leave calendar to record actual dates taken for leave more..
Employee Leave Profile
The employee leave profile records which are the normal days worked by an employee more..
Casual Holiday Each Pay
This tutorial shows how to have Ace Payroll automatically pay a casual employee 8% holiday pay every time they are paid more..
Taxation of Holiday Pay
This article shows how easy it is to tax holiday pay according to IRD requirements more..
Annual Compulsory Closedowns
An annual compulsory closedown is where a business traditionally closes down for a number of weeks each year, usually over Christmas more..
Changing Holiday From 8% Each Pay
The procedure for changing a casual employee over to being a permanent employee in Ace Payroll for holiday pay purposes more..
Termination Holiday 8% Part Year Payment
How to pay the 8% of part year gross for an employee who has been employed for more than a year, receives four weeks holidays a year, and is terminating their employment more..
ERS Holiday Pay FAQ's
A selection of holiday pay FAQ's from the Employment Relations Service more..
Holidays 4 to 5 Weeks
How to manually change an employee from 4 to 5 weeks annual leave more..
Holiday Pay Miscellaneous
The reason why only full days holiday pay owing is shown on payslips rather than fractional days more..
Alphabetical Index
The Ace Payroll alphabetical index provides links to all documentation more..
Ace Payroll FAQ Contents
All the most common Ace Payroll questions grouped by categories in a short table of key words more..
Ace Payroll Frequently Asked Questions
All the most common questions we are asked at Ace Payroll listed in a question format and grouped by category more..

Other leave sections

Public Holiday Entitlements
Ace Payroll receives many calls immediately after every public holiday, asking whether a particular employee is entitled to be paid for the public holiday more..
Public Holiday Taken
Use this method for an employee who did not work on the public holiday, but would have worked had the day not been a public holiday more..
Public Holiday Worked
Use this method for an employee who works at any time on a public holiday more..
Alternative Holidays
An Alternative Holiday is a day an employee is entitled to take off as paid leave, in return for having worked on a public holiday more..
Annual Holiday Entitlements
This article looks at entitlements to holidays as provided for by the Holidays Act more..
Annual Holiday Payments
This tutorial shows how to record holiday pay taken using the Annual Leave method more..
Sick Leave
Entitlements to sick leave as provided for by the Holidays Act more..
Bereavement Leave
Entitlements to bereavement leave as provided for by the Holidays Act more..
Time Bank
The time bank feature allows for the accumulation of hourly leave outside the legal requirements of the Holidays Act more..
Irregular Work Pattern
In this article we look at the calculation of Relevant Daily Pay for an employee that works irregular hours more..
Leave Owing Report
The Leave Owing report provides an estimate of holiday pay owing to all staff at a selected date more..
Holidays Act 2003
The full text of the Holidays Act 2003 more..
Alphabetical Index
The Ace Payroll alphabetical index provides links to all documentation more..
Ace Payroll FAQ Contents
All the most common Ace Payroll questions grouped by categories in a short table of key words more..
Ace Payroll Frequently Asked Questions
All the most common questions we are asked at Ace Payroll listed in a question format and grouped by category more..