Can you legally take a day off if you can't get to work due to snow and ice on the roads?

Sheffield has largely avoided the snow from dreaded Storm Caroline so far but driving on some roads remains dangerous.

Monday, 11th December 2017, 10:26 am
Updated Monday, 11th December 2017, 4:07 pm
Snow on motorway

It is unlikely that more snow will fall in the next few days but a yellow warning for ice remains in place for Sheffield up until 11am on Tuesday.

While driving in snow and ice is less than ideal, most of us will unfortunately still have to drag ourselves in to work.

But, what are your rights around snow days? Can you take a day off if your child's school is closed. Here we sum up everything you need to know.

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Taking paid holiday

If there’s travel disruption, employers can ask staff to take paid holiday (annual leave) if they give the correct notice. This must be at least double the length of time they want employees to take in annual leave.

So for 1 day’s annual leave it would be 2 days notice. The employment contract may set down a different notice period and if so, this will usually apply.

Working flexibly

Employers may ask flexible workers to work from home or make up time later. Unless the employment contract says so, employers can’t insist on this.

If the workplace is closed

If the workplace is closed because of disruption and the employee doesn’t usually work from home, employers can’t usually deduct pay. Employers might be able to ask staff to go to another workplace or work from home.

Time off to look after children

If an employee’s child’s school is closed or their normal childcare arrangements are disrupted, they could have the right for time off to look after them. This should be agreed between the employee and the employer.

Winter weather - travel disruption

Employees are not automatically entitled to pay if they’re unable to get to work because of bad weather. Guidance is available from the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) about winter weather - travel disruption.