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Can Ontario employers pay out vacation pay in a lump sum?

By Representative, Employment Standards Branch |

Chris asked:

My place of employment is in London, Ontario Canada. Question I have is does an employee have a right to request his/her vacation pay at anytime throughout the year. Our vacation period is from June 1st to May 31st following year. 

We are paid lump sum every June 15th regrdless when we take our holidays. I don't quite understand Employment Act explaination, says you are to be paid either each week or lump sum before booked vacation.

We simply go to our foreman and ask for a holiday, holiday is then approved and we are NOT paid for it.

My question is soley on idea that as far as employers concerned we don't get our vacation pay til June 15th, well what if I want it now? Say for Xmas. Do I have right to request my money at anytime? And isn't there government requlations on how long a business can hold ones money without owing some type of interest.

Guess where I am going with this is I am not entitled to my vacation pay as far as my employer is concerned til June 15, 2012   Can I not have whats neen accrued from June 1st til today Dec 16th today? 

Representative, Employment Standards Branch answered:

CanadaOne spoke to a representative from the Ontario Ministry of Labour and she explained that the employer can pay you out in a lump sum, however they must pay employees BEFORE they go on vacation.


So on June 15 you should get your vacation pay in advance and then it's the employee's responsibility to put that money aside (the positive is that you will accrue interest on your pay, rather than the company).


If you think your employer is paying you after, rather than before, your vacation I would highly recommend that you call the Ministry. They are very responsive and will be able to give you an answer based on the specifics of your situation and the company you work for.


Here is their toll free number:

Employment Standards Information Centre (Ontario)

1-800-531-5551 (Canada-wide)

416-326-7160 (GTA)


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