If your career break was self-funded
You may not be guaranteed a job on your return. Find advice on what to do before and during your break.
Where no formal unpaid leave is available, many employers reach a mutual understanding with employees who want to take an extended, self-funded career break for personal reasons.
In this situation, there is no guarantee of a job on return as your employer is not legally bound to reinstate you unless there is a signed contract in place.
If your break and return was more an informal, word of mouth arrangement, it’s advisable to agree with your employer at the start about the best way of keeping in touch during your absence.
This is especially important if company restructuring and transfers take place.
Depending on your role and how long the break was, you may want to consider checking in with your employer or line manager a few weeks or months before the agreed return date to:
- discuss any changes in personnel or business strategy that may have occurred in your absence
- assess how any workplace changes could impact your role or responsibilities
- review any compliance training needed
- agree on a return-to-work plan.
During an extended time off work for a career break:
- other forms of leave, like annual and carer's (if eligible), do not accumulate
- an employee's period of continuous service generally remains intact.