Q&A: Avraha in Israel
The onus is on the employer to prove that the employee was not dismissed in order to avoid paying severance pay and Avraha.
Otherwise, the employee may claim that the Avraha days be paid with his final salary.
The period during which the employee was on unpaid leave is not taken into account when calculating seniority in the job, according to which Avraha compensation is calculated.
Thus, the employee is not entitled to Avraha for the period during which he was on unpaid leave.
Here's an example to help you understand.
An employee started working for the employer in July 2019 and worked continuously until the end of March 2020.
Due to the corona crisis, the employee was placed on unpaid leave from April to June. (3 months). He returned to work in July 2020.
When the Avraha is paid in July 2020, the employee is not entitled to vacation pay. This is because the calculation of the employee's seniority does not take into account the period of unpaid leave, and his effective seniority is therefore only 9 months.
We remind you that an employee can only claim the Avraha in Israel once he or she has been with the company for one year.
After 3 months of work (July-August-September 2020), the employee will have completed one year's seniority and will then be eligible for the Avraha.ALSO READ: What are the obligations of employers in Israel?
3. What about the person who worked only part of the second year?
It is agreed that employees with one year's seniority are entitled to Avraa in Israel.
So a private-sector employee who has worked for a year and a half is entitled to 5 days for the first year and a further 3 days for the second.
That's half of what he would have been entitled to if he had worked for the whole of the 2nd year.
In short: In this case, the amount of Dmei Avraha will be calculated on a pro-rata basis.
A part-time employee is entitled to Avraha in proportion to the hours worked.
For example, a part-time employee will receive half the Dmei Avraha.
The employer must pay Avraa between June and September.
However, if the workplace has agreed otherwise, the employer may pay the Avraa in any other month of the year.
This arrangement between employee and employer must be in writing. It should also be noted in the employee's employment contract.
The employer may not require the employee to take employer-financed vacation instead of paying Avraa, unless the employee agrees.
Moreover, even if the employee has given his consent, the employer may not pay less vacation than the amount of Dmei Avraha to which the employee is entitled.
The Avraha is an income from work like any other, and is therefore taxable.
Most payments made as part of the employment relationship are taxable, except for severance payments, which benefit from a tax-free ceiling (Nis 12,420 per year of seniority, current as of July 2020).
The employer can claim that Avraha days are included in the gross monthly salary.
This is the case as long as the gross salary covers the minimum wage and the Avraha.
As a reminder, the current minimum hourly wage in Israel is 29.12 ILS as of January 2020.
However, an explicit written agreement between employer and employee is required for this procedure to be valid.