Pay Premiums for Sunday Staff

Peninsula Team

March 04 2018

Are you complying with the obligation to pay a premium to Sunday workers? Check out the key points and consequences for non-compliance below… Section 14 of the Organisation of Working Time Act states that employees who work on a Sunday shall be compensated by either:
  1. Paying a daily allowance for Sunday work
  2. Paying an increased hourly rate (either for Sunday work or across the week taking into account the requirement to work on a Sunday)
  3. Time off in lieu
  4. Or a combination of the above
The purpose of section 14 (and of the Act in general) is to protect the welfare of employees by ensuring that they have adequate rest. Choosing your compensation method Whatever method(s) you select to compensate your employees for Sunday work, it must be ‘reasonable in all the circumstances’. Best practice indicates that in providing for a Sunday premium, reference should be made to provisions specified in a collective agreement applying to comparable employees in the relevant sector. That is, employers should consider what Sunday premium is paid to employees working in similar or identical jobs in similar circumstances when settling on the provision that they’ll make. An employee who has not benefited from appropriate compensation for Sunday work may make a claim to the WRC. The penalty in the event that the claim is successful is up to 2 years’ pay. Employees who are not satisfied that their Sunday premium rate is adequate may refer a dispute to the WRC, for its recommendation as to the appropriate provision for Sunday work. Employers working in retail should pay particular attention to the Code of Practice on Sunday working in the retail trade, which can be accessed here. If you have any questions in relation to Sunday workers, please contact our expert employment law advisors on the 24 Hour Advice Service on 0818 923 923

Suggested Resources