Details of a Bill have been published in Parliament this month introducing a new statutory right for parents to take paid leave from work following the death of a child. The Parental Bereavement (Pay and Leave) Bill championed by Conservative MP Kevin Hollindrake will offer working parents two weeks of paid leave if they have suffered the loss of a child under the age of 18.
There is currently no legal requirement in the UK for employers to provide paid time off for grieving parents. Under the Employments Rights Act, employees are allowed “reasonable” unpaid time off to deal with emergencies involving a dependant but the amount of time will vary from employer to employer as well as the circumstances involved.
MP Kevin Hollindrake commented that “This is such an important bill for parents going through the most terrible of times. There is little any of us can do to help, but at least we can make sure that every employer will give them time to grieve.”
How The Parental Bereavement Bill will work
As well as a day-one right to paid leave, the Bill seeks to make statutory parental bereavement pay available to employees with a minimum of 26 weeks continuous service. Employers would be able to reclaim the cost of this from the Government.
The Bill was first introduced earlier this year in July and is hoped to become law by 2020.
For more information on this or any other employment law related issue please contact a member of our specialist employment solicitors team on 01245 893400.
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