Parental Bereavement Leave – “Jack’s Law” Policy

(A pdf version of this policy is available for download here)


The Parental Bereavement Leave and Pay Regulations, known as Jack’s Law in memory of Jack Herd, gives a statutory right to a minimum of 2 weeks’ leave for all employed parents if they lose a child under the age of 18, or suffer a stillbirth from 24 weeks of pregnancy, irrespective of how long they have worked for their employer.

Who is entitled to parental bereavement leave?

Employed parents and adults with parental responsibility who have suffered the loss of a child under the age of 18. Adults with ‘parental responsibility’ include adopters, foster parents, legal guardians and “kinship carers’, who may be close relatives or family friends that have assumed responsibility for looking after a child in the absence of parents.

The entitlement also applies to parents who suffer a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy. In this instance, female employees will still be entitled to up to 52 weeks of maternity leave and/or pay, as will a mother who loses a child after it is born.

What are employees entitled to?

This policy should be used in conjunction with the Councils Bereavement/Compassionate Leave Policy.

From April 2020, employee’s will be able to take the leave as either a single block of 2 weeks, or as 2 separate blocks of one week each taken at different times across the first year after their child’s death. This means they can match their leave to the times they need it most, which could be in the early days or over the first anniversary.

If an employee loses more than one child, they will be entitled to take a separate period of leave for each child.

[Adopted by Full Council at the meeting held on Wednesday 4th March 2020 under minute number FPC68/20. Due for review in 2021 in conjunction with Bereavement/Compassionate Leave Policy.]