Holiday Pay Update - 20th June 2019
Whilst the Court of Appeal Judgement in respect of Holiday Pay is a major step forward in this case, there is still some clarity required around the parameters of any amount to be paid to officers. This will be a matter for the original Tribunal to determine and any talk of remuneration amounts is premature at this stage.
There have been a number of requests received by the PFNI about this judgement and legal clarity was requested. These can be broken down into the following areas:
- New claims from serving officers – can they still join the IT group action?
- Eligibility and process for retired/former officers to submit claims;
- Eligibility and process for current Inspecting ranks and above to submit claims for the period they were Constable and Sergeant ranks;
Firstly, the group action is now closed however serving Constables and Sergeants can still bring a claim if he/she has received any payment for holiday pay within the last three months. This is because the Court of Appeal determined that the calculation for this payment used by the PSNI was incorrect (as it should have included a payment for overtime) so it follows that a claimant will be able to show a financial detriment.
To bring a claim, Voluntary fund subscribers should complete an Application for Legal Assistance Form which can be completed on the members section of the PFNI website.
In relation to eligibility for retired/former officers and current Inspecting ranks for the period they were Constable and Sergeant ranks, the latest legal advice is that this Court of Appeal judgement still endorses the relevant legislation, namely that the lodging of claims can only be progressed through an Industrial Tribunal where there has been an unlawful deduction/financial detriment in the last three months. Therefore it appears that unless someone received a payment for holiday pay and worked paid overtime in the last three months then there is no eligibility to make any claim. PFNI believe this is manifestly unfair and so a further meeting has been scheduled with our lawyers to ascertain if there is any legal scope to challenge this. Updates on these matters will be provided on the PFNI Website when received.
To be clear this case is still not at conclusion stage yet. Please be aware that the Chief Constable still retains the option to also take this judgement to the Supreme Court. The Court of Appeal finding is a most welcome development but the out-workings of it will now continue, before the original Tribunal so it can make a final determination. I fully expect that process will take some time so I would encourage potential claimants to be patient.