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Delaware Paid Holidays

Posted by Tamara

Many Delaware employees wonder what the law is regarding paid holidays. One company might give 5 paid holidays while another gives 10.  Is there a federal law establishing the specific paid holidays for employees? 

The answer is no.  There is no federal law that requires U.S. employers to provide employees with paid time off on holidays. In fact, a company is within its legal rights to require employees to work every day, 365 days a year. 

According to the Society of Human Resource Management, however, the majority of companies in the U.S. provide their workers with 5-10 paid holidays a year. The most common holidays and their dates in 2011 are: 

  • New Year’s Day Saturday Jan. 1, 2011
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Monday Jan. 17, 2011
  • Washington’s Birthday Monday Feb. 21, 2011
  • Memorial Day Monday May 30, 2011
  • Independence Day Monday July 4, 2011
  • Columbus Day Monday Oct 10, 2011
  • Veterans Day Monday Nov 11, 2011
  • Thanksgiving Thursday Nov 24, 2011
  • Labor Day Monday Sept. 5, 2011
  • Christmas Day Sunday Dec. 25, 2011
  • New Year’s Day Sunday Jan 1, 2012 

Another question Delaware workers often ask involves the legal rate of “holiday” pay or wages at a premium rate for employees who work on paid holiday. There is no federal law setting a specific rate for “holiday” pay. In fact, there is no federal law that requires premium pay at all. Policies regarding holidays and holiday pay are set by the individual employer. 

There are a few states, such as Rhode Island, which mandate employees in certain industries be paid a premium for working holidays and/or Sundays. The usual rate for this premium is time-and-a-half. The majority of states, however, do have such a law.  

Federal law establishes holidays for employees of the federal government. These are the dates when many government offices such as the post office are closed. Many employers also follow a similar schedule, although they are not legally required to do so. 



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