Real Employment Law Advice

What are the options for an employee who cannot work due to school closures and childcare?

In this episode 164 of the Podcast I address a question which has arisen frequently since the announcement by Boris Johnson on the 4th January 2021 that schools would close the next day. What are the options for employees impacted by school closures and childcare issues.

In this episode I will cover the various options available including:

  • Time off for dependents
  • Parental Leave
  • Holiday
  • Unpaid leave
  • Furlough
  • Temporary changes to terms and conditions

In this episode I also cover some practical guidance including:

  • Checking in with staff regularly for welfare discussions
  • Ensuring that you are being reasonable
  • Managing expectations of staff during this time
  • Being mindful of potential reputation implications of your decisions

Fixed Price Advice from Real Experts

As part of our HR Harbour annual subscription service for employers we provide guidance and training for employers, supervisors and managers. If you would like to know more about the HR Harbour Service and how you can get unlimited support from as little as £198 per month please contact me for a no obligation discussion – alison@realemploymentlawadvice.co.uk or you can find full details here: HR Harbour

Don’t forget you can contact us by telephone 01983 897003, 01722 653001, 020 3470 0007, 0191 375 9694 or 023 8098 2006


If you are an employee and you want to make a request to your employer to be furloughed or flexibly furloughed due to childcare reasons we have created a free template letter available for you to download and use/amend and give to your employer.

You can find the details here: Letter to request furlough or flexible furlough due to school closures and/or childcare.


The information contained in this Podcast and post is provided for guidance and is a snapshot of the law at the time. It is provided for your information only and should not be used as a substitute for obtaining legal advice that it specific to your particular circumstances.

The guidance should not be relied upon in any decision making process. It is strongly recommended that you seek advice before taking action.

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