Annual leave is paid time off work granted by employers to employees to be used for whatever the employee wishes. Depending on the employer's policies, differing number of days may be offered, and the employee may be required to give a certain amount of advance notice, may have to coordinate with the employer to be sure that staffing is adequately covered during the employee's absence, and other requirements may have to be met. The vast majority of countries today mandate a minimum amount of paid annual leave by law, though the United States is a notable exception in mandating no minimum paid leave and treating it as a perk rather than a right.
|Political Economy||Paid Vacation
|Note: Paid vacation excludes paid public holidays.|
Most countries around the world have labor laws that mandate employers give a certain number of paid time-off days per year to workers. Nearly all Canadian provinces require at least two weeks; in the European Union the countries can set freely the minimum, but it has to be at least 20 days (not including national holidays). Full-time employment in Australia requires twenty annual leave days a year. US law does not require employers to grant any vacation or holidays, and about 25% of all employees receive no paid vacation time or paid holidays.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the United States, the average paid holidays for full-time employees in small private establishments in 1996 was 7.6 days. Members of the U.S. Armed Services earn 30 vacation days a year, not including national holidays. Although the law does not mandate vacation time, many employers nonetheless offer paid vacation, typically around 10 work days, to attract employees. Under US federal law, employers usually must compensate terminated employees for accrued but unused vacation time. Additionally, many American employers provide paid days off for national holidays, such as Christmas, New Years, Independence Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving.
Consecutive holidays refers to holidays that occur in a group without working days in between. In the late 1990s, the Japanese government passed a law that increased the likelihood of consecutive holidays by moving holidays from fixed days to a relative position in a month, such as the second Monday.
- Ghosheh, Naj (2013). "Working conditions laws report 2012: A global review" (PDF). International Labour Organization. Retrieved 11 September 2014.
- No-Vacation Nation