Working parents who lose child to receive 2 weeks statutory leave

Andrea Leadsom

Working parents who lose a child under the age of 18 will get two weeks statutory leave in new regulations laid in Parliament this week.

In what’s understood to be a world first, the regulations will implement a statutory right to a minimum of two 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, regardless of how long they have worked for their employer.

The Parental Bereavement Leave and Pay Regulations will be known as ‘Jack’s Law’ in memory of Jack Herd whose mother Lucy campaigned tirelessly on the issue.

Parents will be able to take the leave as either a single block of two weeks, or as two separate blocks of one week each taken at different times across the first year after their child’s death.

“There can be few worse experiences in life than the loss of a child and I am proud that this government is delivering ‘Jack’s Law’, making us the first country in the world to do so,” said Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom.

“When it takes effect, Jack’s Law will be a fitting testament to the tireless efforts of Lucy Herd, alongside many charities, to give parents greater support.”

The regulations take effect from April.