Holiday Pay and Voluntary Overtime

Flower v East of England Ambulance Trust

Mr Flowers and the other claimants worked for the East of England Ambulance Trust. They were employed in a range of roles, all concerned with the ambulance trust.

The issue was whether their holiday pay should take account of non-guaranteed overtime and voluntary overtime. Non-guaranteed overtime does not have to be offered by an employer. However, when it is offered, the worker must accept and work it as it relates to times when there is a requirement to continue working so that patient care is not compromised.

Voluntary overtime is where there is no obligation on an employer to offer overtime and no obligation on the worker to do overtime if it is offered. It is entirely voluntary.

The employees brought claims in the Employment Tribunal for unlawful deductions from wages on the basis that they had been underpaid holiday pay.


The Court of Appeal found that both non-guaranteed overtime work and voluntary overtime could be included in normal remuneration for calculating holiday pay. It held that if overtime is worked with sufficient regularity, it should be regarded as normal remuneration and therefore be included in holiday pay.


Employers should be aware that if workers receive regular payments of any type, in addition to their basic pay, such payments are likely to count as ‘normal remuneration’. If any type of overtime is worked on a regular basis, it is likely it should be included when calculating the workers holiday pay.

If you would like any advice in relation to holiday pay or voluntary overtime or have any other employment law or HR queries, please contact our employment team on 01228 552600 or 01524 548494.

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