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(Chapter 7 of the Decree)

A) To manage paid holidays, you must remember the following two important elements:

The regular (permanent) employee:

An employee is considered regular when he or she has worked 280 hours.
The regular employee (often called permanent) is entitled the 10 or 12 holidays of article 7.01, according to his uninterrupted service.
The non regular employee is entitled to the 8 holidays stated in article 7.07.1.

The working day:

A working day is a day when the employee is normally scheduled to work. The working day is determined individually and may be different from one employee to the other in a company.
(Article 1.01 g)
See section More information above for some examples.

B) List of paid holidays 

1. For regular employees (280 hours fo work)

All the regular employees on your payroll, whether they are full time, part time or on call, are entitled to the following paid holidays:
(Article 7.01)

  • 1. December 31st OR January 2nd, at the employer's choice, for the permanent employee having less than one year of service
    December 31st AND January 2nd for the permanent employee having one year of service or more
  • 2. January 1st
  • 3. Good Friday OR Easter Monday, at the employer's choice
  • 4. the Monday preceding 25 May
  • 5. June 24th
  • 6. July 1st
  • 7. Labour Day
  • 8. Thanksgiving
  • 9. December 25th
  • 10. December 24th OR December 26th at the employer's choice, for the permanent employees having less than one year of service
    December 24th AND December 26th, for the permanent employees having one year of service or more

2. For non regular employees

Non regular employees are entitled to the 8 following holidays according to article 7.07.1 of the Decree:

  • 1. January 1st
  • 2. Good Friday OR Easter Monday, at the employer's choice
  • 3. the Monday preceding 25 May.
  • 4. June 24th
  • 5. July 1st
  • 6. Labour Day
  • 7. Thanksgiving
  • 8. December 25th

C) Two situations to consider for the paid holidays

First situation: The employee is a regular employee (280 hours of work)

To know how much it should be paid, you must first consider for every regular employee whether the holiday coincides with a working day or not.

1. The holiday coincides with a working day
(Sections 7.02, 5.02)

You may:

a) give the holiday to your employee and pay the indemnity as provided by article 7.02 of the Decree.
OR
b) have your employee work and postpone the paid holiday within 3 weeks, before or after. In order to do this, you must reach an agreement with your employee and put this agreement in writing (see example of a letter of agreement.
OR
c) have your employee work and not postpone the paid holiday. In such a case, you must pay your employee the indemnity provided by article 7.02 of the Decree AND pay at time and a half for the hours worked on the holiday with a minimum pay of two hours at time and a half.

2. The holiday does not coincide with a working day
(Sections 7.04, 7.05, 5.02)

You may:

a) give your employee an amount equal to 20% of the salary earned during the pay period preceding the holiday (10%, if it is a two week pay period). Note that the amount payable may be zero if the employee has not worked during the pay period preceding the holiday.
OR
b) postpone the holiday, at your choice, to the working day preceding or following the holiday.
Be careful; the holiday may be postponed to the "working day" preceding or following the holiday and not to any workday.
OR
c) have your employee work and postpone the paid holiday within 3 weeks, before or after. In order to do this, you must reach an agreement with your employee and put this agreement in writing (see example of agreement).
OR
d) have your employee work and not postpone the paid holiday. In such a case, you must pay an amount equal to 20% of the salary earned during the pay period preceding the holiday, (10% if it is a two week pay period) AND pay at time and a half the hours worked on the holiday with a minimum pay of two hours at time and a half.

See section Examples of calculation for holidays and section Example of worked holiday above, for some examples.

Second situation: The employee is not a regular employee (less than 280 hours of work)

In the case of the 8 holidays provided by section 7.07.1 the indemnity is explained at section 7.07.2: 

The indemnity is equal to 1/20th of the wages earned during the four complete weeks of pay preceding the week of the holiday, excluding overtime hours.

If a non regular employee must work on one of those 8 holidays, the employer may: 

a) pay the hours worked at regular rate and pay the indemnity as explained above
OR
b) pay the hours worked at regular rate and allow a compensatory holiday within the three weeks period before or after that day. 

D- Criteria to be eligible for the holidays

To be eligible for paid holidays, the employee must work on the working day preceding and following the holiday. (Section 7.06) (Exception: June 24th, governed by the National Holiday Act)

Nevertheless, if the employee does not work on the preceding and the following working day, you must still pay the holiday if it occurs:

  • during an authorized absence, of less than 15 days.
  • during a sick leave of less than 14 days.
  • during a temporary lay off of less than 22 days.
  • on the working day preceding or following a lay off for lack of work.
  • during his vacation period