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More attention required on employees’ sickness during holidays as of 1 April 2019


An amendment to the Finnish Annual Holidays Act (162/2005) is intended to enter into force in the beginning of April 2019. The amendment will secure employees’ right to an annual four-week holiday despite their possible sick leaves.

The aim of the amendment is to implement the minimum requirements set out by the Court of Justice of the EU in its case law on the Working Time Directive (2003/88/EY). Said case law has shown that employees have a right to a salaried four-week annual leave regardless of illness, accidents, or medical absences due to medical rehabilitation to restore or maintain working capacity after an occupational disease or accident.

In future, an employee has, with certain conditions, the right to additional paid days off to supplement his annual holiday in case his holiday would otherwise remain below four weeks due to an illness.

This amendment is a good reminder of the precedence and mandatory nature of EU law in relation to national provisions and of its application also in the field of employment law.

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