Making a flexible working request

1 . Asking for flexible working

Important: This advice reflects the current law. We will update this advice in April 2024 when new flexible working law comes into force. Read more about the new flexible working law on GOV.UK.

You might be able to make a 'flexible working request' to your employer if you want to:

  • reduce your hours to work part-time

  • change your start and finish time
  • have flexibility with your start and finish time (sometimes known as 'flexitime')
  • do your hours over fewer days ('compressed hours')
  • work from home or elsewhere ('remote working'), all or part of the time
  • share the job with someone else

You can ask for the change to be for:

  • all working days
  • specific days or shifts only
  • specific weeks only, for example during school term time
  • a limited time, for example for 6 months only

Check your right to make a request

By law, you have the right to make a flexible working request if:

  • you've worked for your employer for at least 26 weeks
  • you're legally classed as an employee
  • you've not made any other flexible working request in the last 12 months

If you have the right to request, your employer must:

Some employers will allow you to make a request even if you do not have the legal right – check your workplace's policy.

If you're a parent or carer

All employees have the right to request flexible working, including if you're:

  • a parent
  • a carer
  • returning from maternity leave

All flexible working requests should be treated in the same way.

If you're a parent or carer, your employer might have other ways for you to take time off. For example, parental leave to look after your child or time off for dependants. Check your workplace's policy.

If you're disabled

You should:

  • make a reasonable adjustment request if your request relates to your disability
  • make a flexible working request if your request does not relate to your disability, for example it's about time off on Wednesdays to provide childcare for a relative's child