UK workers
If you are paid per annum, you get 1/12 of your salary every month, regardless of how many days are in the monthReuters

There are a number of myths surrounding leap year, but one of the most debated and discussed issues surrounding the extra day focuses on whether employees are in fact working for free when 29 February comes around once every four years.

UK workers who are paid by the day or by the hour are guaranteed to be remunerated on the day when, allegedly, women can propose to men – but the situation is rather more complicated for employees on an annual salary.

The latter tend to be paid a set amount for a year – including a leap year – divided in equal parts over the course of 12 months.

"What happens is you get 1/12 of your annual salary every month, regardless of how many days are in the month," Gary Webb from Bond Payroll Services was quoted as saying by the BBC.

"One could argue that hourly workers may be slightly better off because they are paid for the extra day, but then there are benefits of being an annual person as well."

Accordingly, a worker earning the national average salary of £26,500 a year, should receive £2,208.33 per month, which breaks down to £71.24 per day in a 31-day month but a daily wage of £78.87 in February, as a leap day partially offsets the benefits of a shorter month.

In December 2015, a government petition was launched to ensure 29 February becomes a bank holiday, claiming the average salaried person loses £113. The petition has so far been signed by more than 1,500 people, but it needs a further 8,500 signatures before the government has to respond.