With the Christmas Period upon us we thought you might find some information on Public Holidays and the relevant employer obligations/ responsibilities around pay useful.


There are nine Public Holidays in Ireland each year – they are:

•New Year’s Day (1 January)

•St. Patrick’s Day (17 March)

•Easter Monday (Changes every year)

•The first Monday in May, June & August

•The last Monday in October

•Christmas Day (25 December)

•St. Stephen’s Day (26 December)

Here is a breakdown of the statutory outline of Public Holiday Entitlements under Irish Employment Legislation:

Did you know that employees scheduled to work on a Public Holiday are entitled to an additional day’s pay for the day?

Public holidays, Bank Holiday Pay

For instance, let’s take “Employee A” as an example –

“Employee A” works on the day the Public Holiday falls – let’s say “Employee A” is a retail store employee and is required to work on St. Stephen’s day as it is the first day of the store’s seasonal sale.

*On a normal working day “Employee A” earns €100.

This means that “Employee A” is entitled to receive the usual €100 for the hours worked on the Public Holiday as well as an additional €100 – So “Employee A” receives €200 for working on the Public Holiday. If there is any ambiguity in ascertaining what an additional day’s pay should equal the employer should look at the last day worked prior to the Public Holiday.

“Employee B” represents an employee who is normally scheduled to work on a day that a Public Holiday falls but is not required to work on that day (for example – an administrative assistant in a bank who typically works 09:00-17:00 Monday – Friday, who is not required to work on Easter Monday).

“Employee B” should receive their normal day’s pay for that day as well as not being required to work on the Public Holiday. On a normal working day “Employee B” receives €100. When a Public Holiday falls “Employee B” will not be required to work on this day as the business is closed. “Employee B” will still receive their normal day’s pay.

The one that can cause the most confusion is the case of “Employee C”

Employees who are not normally scheduled to work on the Public Holiday will receive one-fifth of their normal weekly pay for the day. “Employee C”, for instance, works Wednesday – Friday and receives €100 per day in remuneration. If a Public Holiday falls on a Tuesday, even though “Employee C” never works that day he or she still has the right to benefit from the Public Holiday in some way.

“Employee C” is still entitled to be paid a certain amount as a benefit for the Public Holiday (one-fifth of their normal weekly pay). If this employee earns €300 per three day week (Wednesday-Friday) they are entitled to earn an additional €60 during a week where a Public Holiday falls on a Monday or Tuesday.

The above rules will apply for all Public Holidays.

Public Holiday Pay Guide