An employee is entitled to annual leave if the employee is covered under Singapore Employment Act and has worked for the company for at least 3 months.

What You Will Learn

  • Who is entitled to annual leave?
  • How many days of annual leave is an employee entitled to?
  • How to pro-rate annual leave?
  • Is probation and notice period included for calculation of annual leave?
  • Can an employee take half day leave?
  • Can company reject the employee’s annual leave application?
  • Can annual leave be forfeited?

Annual Leave Eligibility

The annual leave provision of the Singapore Employment Act does not cover workman who earns more than more than $4,500 basic monthly salary; non-workman who earns more than $2,500 monthly basic salary; and, managers and executives.

An employee who is covered under the annual leave provision of the Singapore Employment Act and has worked for the company for at least 3 months is entitled to the statutory annual leave benefit.

Annual Leave Entitlement

An employee’s annual leave entitlement depends on the employee’s number of years of service with the company. The calculation for the entitlement shall begin from the employee’s first day of work.

For example, an employee joins the company on 1 April 2017:

Year of service Days of leave For which period of service
1st 7 1 April 2017 – 31 March 2018
2nd 8 1 April 2018 – 31 March 2019
3rd 9 1 April 2019 – 31 March 2020
4th 10 1 April 2020 – 31 March 2021
5th 11 1 April 2021 – 31 March 2022
6th 12 1 April 2022 – 31 March 2023
7th 13 1 April 2023 – 31 March 2024
8th and thereafter 14 1 April 2024 onwards

 

Pro-rate Annual Leave

Annual leave shall be pro-rated based on the employee’s completed months of service and it shall be rounded off to the nearest whole number. Any period less than a completed month of service shall be disregarded in the calculation of the leave entitlement.

Period of Service Completed Months Leave Entitlement
1 April 2017 – 31 March 2018 12 12/12 × 7 = 7
1 April 2017 –  28 February 2018 11 11/12 × 7 ≈ 6
1 April 2017 – 31 January 2018 10 10/12 × 7 ≈ 6
1 April 2017 – 31 December 2017 9 9/12 × 7 ≈ 5
1 April 2017 – 30 November 2017 8 8/12 × 7 ≈ 5
1 April 2017 – 31 October 2017 7 7/12 × 7 ≈ 4
1 April 2017 – 30 September 2017 6 6/12 × 7 ≈ 4
1 April 2017 – 31 August 2017 5 5/12 × 7 ≈ 3
1 April 2017 – 31 July 2017 4 4/12 × 7 ≈ 2
1 April 2017 – 30 June 2017 3 3/12 × 7 ≈ 2
1 April 2017 – 31 May 2017 2 2/12 × 7 ≈ 0*
1 April 2017 – 30 April 2017 1 1/12 × 7 ≈ 0*

* An employee needs to complete at least 3 months of service to be entitled to annual leave.

Annual Leave during Probation and Notice Period

The probationary period and notice period shall be included in calculating the employee’s leave entitlement.

Half Day Leave

The Singapore Employment Act does not cater for half-day leave. Any leave taken, even if it is taken on a half working day, is considered a full day leave.

For example, the working hours on a Saturday is from 9am to 1pm. If an employee takes leave on a Saturday, it is considered as a full day leave.

However, the company may have a policy to treat leave taken for a half working day as a half-day leave.

Rejection of Annual Leave Application

An employee’s application for absence of work is subjected to the company’s approval. The company may choose not to approve the leave application due to operational requirements.

Nevertheless, the company should always exercise flexibility when granting leave, taking into consideration the employee’s preference, and granting the applications whenever the situation permits.

Forfeiture of Leave

According to the Singapore Employment Act, an employee’s leave balance can be carried forward 1 year.

Annual leave can only be forfeited if the employee is absent from work without permission or reasonable excuse for more than 20% of the working days in the months or year; did not use the leave within the subsequent year of service; or, is dismissed on the ground of misconduct.

The treatment of the leave benefit shall be in accordance with the Singapore Employment Act. However, any additional leave entitlement above the statutory requirement shall be in accordance with the company policy.

For more information, you can refer to the Singapore Employment Act or the Singapore Ministry of Manpower.