The Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997 sets out statutory entitlements for employees in respect of annual leave and public holidays. All health service employees are covered by the Act.

There is no qualifying period or hourly threshold for entitlement to annual leave. This means that all employees, regardless of the number of hours they work a week, start to accrue an entitlement to annual leave from the commencement date of their employment.

Annual Leave Entitlements

Entitlement to annual leave is based on the number of hours worked in the leave year.

The leave year extends from 1st April to 31st March. Particulars of leave entitlements are set out in the employee's contract of employment and vary depending on the grade.

HSE HR Circular 006/2014 sets out the standardised annual leave arrangements for new entrants and promotees in the Public Health System.

HSE HR Circular 011/2012 sets out the revised leave arrangements as a result of the announcement by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on standardisation of annual leave in the public sector.

HSE HR Circular 005/2009 sets out the standardised annual leave and working hours which have been agreed for the following staff grades;

- Clerical/Admin Grades III to VIII, and all senior managers above Grade VIII
- Basic Senior and Manager Therapy Grades
- Basic Senior and Manager Medical Scientist Grades
- Basic Senior and Radiographer Manager Grades

HSE HR Circular 005A/2009 provides clarification on the interpretation of Circular 005/2009.

A full list of leave entitlements by grade in line with HSE HR Circular 005/2009 can be viewed by clicking here.

HSE HR Circular 008/2012 re accrual of annual leave during sick leave

HSE HR Circular 001/2012 re accrual of annual leave for part time staff for hours worked in excess of contracted hours

Further information on annual leave can be found in the HSE Terms and Conditions of Employment document. Please click here to read the relevant section.