The Northern Ireland Assembly passed the Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Act (NI) 2022 (“the Act”) earlier this year providing eligible working parents with an entitlement to 10 days’ statutory paid leave in the event of the death of a child up to the age of 18 or a still birth after 24 weeks of pregnancy. As this Act was passing through the Assembly, it was recognised that employees who experience pregnancy loss through miscarriage should also be able to avail of support. The Act, therefore, allows for regulations to further extend this support so that those who need to take paid bereavement leave during such a time can do so.
On 24 October 2022 Economy Minister, Gordon Lyons, announced a public consultation to introduce regulations for miscarriage leave and pay. The proposal is to extend the entitlement of 10 days paid leave to those who lose a baby before the 24th week of pregnancy therefore closing the gap in entitlement.
The Minister is also consulting about amending the Act to make entitlements to both miscarriage leave and pay and parental bereavement leave and pay day 1 rights, thereby removing the 6 month qualifying period for such rights.
Details of the consultation can be found here:
Should you require any further information or advice, please contact any member of the Employment Law Unit:-
Tel: 028 9024 5034
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