Leave Policy in Kenya

Shraddha Saxena
Manage Kenya's holidays and leave types with Gloroots, streamlining annual leave, holiday requests, and employee leave efficiently.

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Table of Content

Kenya offers a valuable talent pool for companies expanding their global workforce in Africa. The country's leave policy ensures employees' rights to various types of paid and unpaid leave, including annual leave, public holidays, sick leave, maternity and paternity leave, and special leave categories. These regulations balance work and personal life, enhancing employee well-being and productivity. Employers hiring from Kenya or through an Employer of Record (EOR) in Kenya must adhere to these laws to maintain a fair and compliant work environment.

Annual Leave (Vacation)

  • Employees in Kenya are eligible for a minimum of 21 days of paid annual leave after one year of employment.
  • According to the New Labour Law, new employees can take annual leave starting from the 7th month of employment.
  • Employers can, with the employee’s consent, divide the annual leave into different segments to be taken at various times.
  • The New Labour Law requires that employees take at least one uninterrupted period of 10 consecutive days out of the minimum 15 days of leave.

Public Holidays

  • 1 Jan 2024, Monday: New Year’s Day
  • 29 Mar 2024, Friday: Good Friday
  • 1 Apr 2024, Monday: Easter Monday
  • 10 Apr 2024, Wednesday: Idd ul Fitr
  • 1 May 2024, Wednesday: Labour Day
  • 10 May 2024, Friday: National Tree Growing Day
  • 1 Jun 2024, Saturday: Madaraka Day
  • 17 Jun 2024, Monday: Idd ul Azha (Tentative)
  • 10 Oct 2024, Thursday: Moi Day
  • 20 Oct 2024, Sunday: Mashujaa Day
  • 21 Oct 2024, Monday: Mashujaa Day Observance
  • 31 Oct 2024, Thursday: Diwali (Tentative)
  • 12 Dec 2024, Thursday: Jamhuri Day
  • 25 Dec 2024, Wednesday: Christmas Day
  • 26 Dec 2024, Thursday: Boxing Day

Sick Days

After completing two consecutive months of service, employees in Kenya are entitled to up to 30 days of sick leave with full pay, followed by 15 days with half pay, within each 12-month period of continuous service. A professional medical certificate verifying the incapacity to work is required for all sick leave.

Maternity Leave

All female employees in Kenya are entitled to three months of maternity leave, during which they must receive their regular pay. Employers can grant extensions to maternity leave, and employees may use their annual leave or sick leave immediately following maternity leave with employer consent. To activate maternity leave rights, employees must provide written notice at least one week before the intended start date, but a shorter notice is acceptable if circumstances prevent providing a week's notice. 

Kenyan law does not specify how early maternity leave can begin before childbirth. Employers may request a certificate from a medical practitioner or midwife to confirm the maternity leave request. After maternity leave, employees should return to their previous position or an equivalent one with the same or better terms and conditions. 

Demoting or terminating an employee during or immediately after maternity leave is considered discriminatory. It is also discriminatory to inquire about pregnancy status or plans during recruitment. Employers cannot mandate pregnancy tests unless the job poses a risk to pregnancy.

Paternity Leave

Fathers in Kenya are eligible for two weeks of paid paternity leave.

Hassle-Free Leave Policy Management in Kenya  with Gloroots

At Gloroots, we understand that managing leave policies can be complex, especially when expanding your business and hiring internationally. Our platform ensures compliance with Kenya labor laws, keeps accurate leave balances, processes leave requests seamlessly and generates detailed leave reports. By partnering with Gloroots, you can concentrate on growing your business while we manage the complexities of employee leave administration. Contact us to learn how Gloroots can simplify your HR processes and enhance your operations in Kenya.

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