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A new right to parental bereavement leave comes in today as statutory parental leave and sick pay rates rise.
The new parental bereavement leave scheme comes into effect today and applies to any child who dies on or after 6th April.
Employees now get the right to two weeks of leave if they lose a child under the age of 18. The same rules apply following a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy.
If an employee has worked for an employer for 26 weeks or more at the time of death, then they are entitled to paid leave, which is likely to be at the statutory rate of £151.20 per week or 90% of their weekly earnings (whichever is lower).
Parents may take bereavement leave at any time during the 56 weeks following the loss of a child. They have the option to split their leave into two blocks and take a week at a time.
The law also applies to others with a duty for parental care. This includes guardians, adopters, foster carers and kinship carers.
The statutory rate for Statutory Maternity Pay, Statutory Paternity Pay, Statutory Adoption Pay, Statutory Shared Parental Pay and Maternity Allowance all increase from today. Statutory parental leave pay will rise from £148.68 to £151.20 per week. Statutory Sick Pay will also increase from £94.25 to £95.85 per week.