In Belgium, holiday entitlement and the corresponding holiday pay are based on the periods of employment in the preceding calendar year, also called the holiday reference year. Some absences however, such as the first 12 months of illness, are equalized and count as days worked.
Lawfully, only full illness days are equalized for the accrual of holiday entitlement and holiday pay. Consequently, employees resuming work half-days after a period of illness with the approval of the advising doctor of the health care fund did not accrue any holiday rights or holiday pay for these days. If they would have worked in a system of full illness days in alternation with full working days, their absence would have been equalized.
With a Royal Decree of June 7, 2018, published in the Belgian State Gazette of June 21, 2018, the legislator has decided to correct this situation and to equalize “parts of a day not worked” as well.
This change comes into effect for holiday reference year 2018, and thus holiday year 2019. In practice: employees resuming work half-days in 2018 after a period of illness with the approval of the advising doctor of the health care fund, will see these days being equalized for the determination of their 2019 holiday entitlement and holiday pay.
Pro-Pay will make the necessary adjustments to its systems in order to ensure a correct and accurate accrual of rights in the framework of this updated legislation.