HR & Employment Law Insights

Helping family businesses, start-ups, charities, social enterprises, and other growing or established businesses throughout the UK make sense of HR and Employment Law challenges.

We get asked HR related questions every day and each week we will be sharing our top question of the week that we have been asked here at The HR Booth.
In this week’s question of the week we explain what to do in adverse weather conditions when employees are unable to attend work.

Question

I have had an employee unable to attend work due to adverse weather conditions, do I still need to pay them?

Answer 

No you do not need to pay the employee if they are unable to attend work due to adverse weather conditions.The responsibility for employees getting to work does not lie with the employer.
If an employee's normal mode of transport cannot be used because due to severe weather conditions, you should first encourage the employee to explore alternative means of safe transport.

You may wish to consider whether the employee could usefully work from home until the weather situation has improved. If this is not a viable option, then the alternatives available are for you to advise employees that any time off work in these circumstances will be unpaid. Another option is that employees can request to take the time off as paid annual leave or ask them to work at another time that suits the business.

If however the business is unable to open due to the adverse weather, the employees are entitled to their normal rate of pay, or you could look to put them on annual leave if you have provisions to allow you to do this in the contract.