- Pilots' holiday pay: tribunal may assess amount due (News, 22 October 2012)
Crew members of aircraft flying for the purposes of public transport, including pilots, do not have rights to paid annual leave under the Working Time Regulations 1998. They are instead covered by the Civil Aviation (Working Time) Regulations 2004, under which they have an entitlement to at least four weeks of paid annual leave. However, unlike under the WTR 1998, there is no explicit mechanism in the 2004 regulations for calculating the amount of pay due during such periods of holiday. Nonetheless, on a claim in respect of such holiday pay, an employment tribunal is entitled to assess and rule on the appropriate payments to be made. In so doing, holiday pay for a pilot should be calculated so as to include (1) basic pay, (2) remuneration relating to his personal and professional status as an airline pilot, and (3) remuneration intrinsically linked to the performance of the tasks which he is required to carry out under his contract of employment, but to exclude (4) any part of his total remuneration intended exclusively to cover occasional or ancillary costs arising at the time of performance of those tasks, such as costs connected with time spent away from base. The assessment of which components of total remuneration are linked to performance of contractual tasks must be done on the basis of an average over a reference period which is judged to be representative. The employer may choose the reference period, within the parameters of what is reasonable, but, failing that, it would be for the tribunal to determine the appropriate period. Supreme Court: British Airways v Williams.
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