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Paying employees for public holidays

Regardless of whether they are full-time, part-time, or casual, all employees who have been with an employer for 30 days or more, qualify to be paid for the six statutory holidays.

What are the public holidays in Newfoundland and Labrador? 

  • New Year’s Day
  • Good Friday
  • Memorial Day (Canada Day)
  • Labour Day
  • Remembrance Day
  • Christmas Day 

How do I pay my employees for a public holiday? 

When an employee works on a paid public holiday they are entitled to choose one of the following: 

  • To receive wages at twice their regular rate for the hours worked on the holiday, or
  •  an additional day off with pay within 30 days of the holiday, or
  •  an additional paid vacation day. 

There are no qualifiers to be met to receive this benefit and the employee chooses their benefit.

When an employee works on a paid holiday, but a lesser number of hours than they normally would have worked:

  • they are entitled to receive wages at their regular rate for the hours worked, plus
  • a regular day's pay. 

When an employee does not work on the paid public holiday they are entitled to a regular day’s pay as long as the employee has been employed by the employer for at least 30 days, and has worked their scheduled shifts prior to and after the paid public holiday. 

If an employee works shifts of varying lengths you can calculate their rate of pay by multiplying the employee’s hourly rate by the average number of hours worked in a day by the employee during the 3 weeks immediately prior to the paid public holiday. 

  • For example, an employee earning $11 per hour worked 34 hours over 5 shifts in the three weeks prior to the holiday. Therefore 34 hours/5 shifts = 6.8 hours for an average day’s work. The employee would get paid $11 x 6.8 hours for the holiday. 

When the paid public holiday falls on an employee’s scheduled day off, the employee should be given off  either the first working day after the public holiday or an alternate day off agreed to mutually by the employer and employee. This day will be paid day for the employee. 

For further information please see the booklet Employment Standards in Newfoundland and Labrador