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Human Resources

Bereavement Leave Policy and Procedure

Contents

 

  1. Policy
  2. Eligibility
  3. Length of paid bereavement leave
  4. Additional leave requirements
  5. Notification of leave
  6. Definitions
  7. Equality and Diversity
  8. Approval

 

1 Introduction


1.1 The School gives consideration to the granting of paid bereavement leave in the sad event that an employee suffers the death of a close relative.

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2 Eligibility


2.1 All employees are entitled to request bereavement leave, regardless of length of service.   Leave is granted at the employee’s manager’s discretion as outlined below. The School will not unreasonably refuse such requests.

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3 Length of paid bereavement leave


3.1 The length of paid bereavement leave will be determined by the employee’s manager taking account of the circumstances and the rules stipulated below.  Further advice can be obtained from the HR Directorate.

3.2 Following the death of a close relative listed in section 6 below, an employee will be granted up to three days paid leave, although this may be extended to up to five days at the manager’s discretion.

3.3 Employees may be granted up to two days bereavement leave following the death of an immediate close relative not listed in section 6, subject to their manager’s discretion.  These provisions are not intended to limit the manager’s discretion and each request for such leave should be judged on the circumstances of the case.  For instance, if an employee has been raised by their grandparents, a longer period of leave should be granted.

3.4 If an employee has to travel to the country where their family or relative lived, their manager may grant up to a maximum of ten days paid bereavement leave.  Managers should consider cases individually according to the distance to be travelled and other relevant circumstances.

3.5 Where appropriate, an employee may be granted up to one day of paid bereavement leave to attend a funeral of a close friend or other relative.  

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4. Additional leave requirements


4.1 Where a member of staff requires leave in circumstances not outlined above in section 3, managers should be sympathetic to requests for annual leave or unpaid leave to cover other contingencies relating to bereavement.

4.2 If an employee requires further time off work in addition to the paid bereavement leave granted by their manager under section 3 above, then this should be taken as annual leave or unpaid leave (subject to the normal provisions of School policy on such leave).

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5. Notification of leave


5.1 Where bereavement leave is granted, this should be notified to the employee in writing by the manager, and copied to the HR Directorate.


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6. Definitions


6.1 The School defines a close relative as follows:


a. A child
b. Parent
c. Spouse or partner
d. Next of kin or nominated next of kin
e. Sibling
f. Parents-in-law, if the member of staff are responsible for the funeral arrangements.


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7. Equality and Diversity


7.1 The procedures outlined here should be carried out with due regard to any diversity issues which may have affected either the original situation or the current process.  The School’s Diversity Adviser and diversity specialists within the Human Resources Directorate are available to support colleagues in this area.

7.2 Where a diversity issue (e.g. a disability including chronic physical or mental health conditions) has been disclosed to the School, whether prior to the situation which triggered this process or during the process, the line manager co-ordinating the process is responsible for checking with the employee to determine their needs and for making the appropriate arrangements.

7.3 Employees who have not previously disclosed a diversity issue which may be relevant to this process are encouraged to do so, as early as possible, so that it can be taken into account.

8. Approval

This Policy was agreed with the School recognised trade unions, UCU and UNISON, on 8 April 2011.

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HR Directorate
SOAS

June 2011