The Fourth of July Is on a Saturday This Year: What You Should Know

Having just finished the Memorial Day holiday, it’s time to look forward to the next national holiday: Independence Day. The Fourth of July falls on a Saturday in 2020. Will your employees be celebrating with a paid holiday?

Virtually all organizations (97%) responding to the Employers Council 2020 Paid Holidays Survey reported they would be observing Friday, July 3rd as a paid holiday. There are some variations by state:

  • Arizona : 96%
  • Colorado: 97%
  • Utah: 100%
  • Wyoming: 96%

Employers normally open for business on the weekends may be observing July 4th as a paid holiday. The U.S. Postal Service, Federal Reserve, and banks will be open for business on Friday, and closed on Saturday, July 4th.

Although private-sector employers are not legally required to provide holidays, there are some legal considerations. Wage and Hour law does not require that holiday pay be counted as hours worked for the purpose of calculating overtime pay. However, many employers voluntarily include holiday hours as hours worked, which will result in overtime liability even though an employee has not physically worked more than 40 hours in a workweek.

Regulations do not require premium pay for employees who work on a holiday. If an employer voluntarily pays an employee a premium of at least 1.5 times the regular rate for working on a holiday, that premium pay can be excluded from the employee’s regular rate and credited against the overtime due the employee for working in excess of 40 hours in the workweek.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 requires organizations to make “reasonable accommodation” for religious holiday observances not recognized as organization holidays, as long as the absence of the employee does not place an “undue hardship” on the employer.  The employer is not required to pay for this additional time off.

Please contact us with your human resources, employment law, training, and survey needs, but don’t call on Friday, July 3rd – Employers Council will be closed for the Independence Day holiday.