2024 leap year, what it means, what changes and what it is for

The new year is upon us and 2024 will be a leap year.
In concrete terms, this means that there will be one more day, since the month of February will have 29 days instead of 28.
Although leap years repeat themselves periodically (simplifying every 4 years, but we will see why it is not correct to say this) they are always there are many doubts that concern them.
Between superstitions and traditions that paint leap years with more or less ominous tones, there are also several practical issues that leave some perplexity.
Since February 29th does not exist every year, calculation methods must be adapted for events that occur on this day.
Think about births and document deadlines, but also about prescriptions and working days.
Here is everything you need to know about 2024 as a leap year, obviously starting from the meaning and usefulness of this exception to the calendar.
Leap year, what it means and what changes A leap year is distinguished from the calendar point of view by the presence of an extra day, this means that 2024 has 366 days instead of the usual 365.
What gains this extra day is the month of February, the shortest of all, which thus ends on the 29th.
This is a simple measure adopted in the Gregorian calendar useful for correcting the seasonal shift, so that the temporal system adopted is in line with the rotation motion of the Earth on its own axis.
In addition to there being an extra day, the leap year does not change from any other year, neither from a scientific point of view nor for daily life.
It is nothing more than a convention adopted for the correct distribution of days, even if the absence of a day in other years may lead to some doubts regarding the calculations.
What is the leap year for? Technically speaking, the leap year does not have an actual extra day.
This is because each year has exactly 365.24219 days, which the Earth uses in its rotation around the Sun.
Having for convenience rounded the duration of a year to a whole number, namely 365 days, there is an annual difference of approximately 6 hours.
By accumulating the latter without counting them in the calendar, in 4 years we arrive at 24 hours and in that very year the calendar counts this extra day.
However, it is not correct to say that there is a leap year every 4 years.
This convention, in fact, is also based on rounding, since the rotation time added to the 365 days is not precisely 6 hours but 5 hours, 48 minutes and 46 seconds.
If leap years occurred periodically every 4 years, every 400 years the calendar would be 3 days late.
To avoid this, only secular years divisible by 400 are leap years, thus restoring the 3-day gap.
Just to give an example, 2024 is a leap year, while 2100 will not be and the year 2000 was a leap year.
For non-secular years, we check that it is divisible by 4 (in fact this last check is sufficient).
How to count February 29th: prescription, deadlines, births in the leap year We now come to the practical implications of the leap year, or the presence of February 29th (even if technically it is its absence in the other years that hinders the counts).
As regards the prescription that ends on February 29th in a non-leap year, the starting date is brought forward to the day before.
As for births, those born on this particular day of the year are called leapers in the United States (where the leap year is called leap year) and must endure some bureaucratic obstacles.
Obviously, the birth is regularly registered and the years pass normally, but on a legal level the birthday cannot occur earlier.
Consequently, those born on February 29th have a birthday (in non-leap years) on March 1st, although they can clearly celebrate whenever they prefer.
This aspect is particularly important when it comes to the age of majority or other legally relevant thresholds.
For leapers, there is also a particularity regarding the expiry of documents.
The law (in particular Legislative Decree no.
112/2008) provides that the expiry of the identity card and driving license corresponds to the day and month of birth of the holder after the duration established by law, normally equal to 10 years.
For those born on February 29th, therefore, the first renewal of the identity card and driving license does not take place before 14 years from their issue.
This is to all intents and purposes a bureaucratic gap, but that's it for the moment.
As for the deadlines that coincide with February 29th, it is sufficient to take into consideration the established time, i.e.
how many days must pass, and calculate them taking into account the absence or presence of that day.
When the deadline must be calculated backwards, the deadline is February 28th, otherwise March 1st.
This also applies to leap years, in which February 29th is a day like any other and must therefore be calculated (with relative postponement of the deadlines).
As for work, February 29th is calculated on a par with the other days of the calendar and paid accordingly.
In 2024, February 29th will be a Thursday, so most people will work an extra day, a regularly paid day.
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Author: A.W.M.

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