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Time off for dependants: Entitlement not intended as compassionate leave

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    Forster v Cartwright Black [2004] IRLR 781 EAT (0 other reports)

Key points

In Forster v Cartwright Black, the EAT holds:

  • The purpose of s.57A(1)(c) of the Employment Rights Act 1996 is to enable an employee to take reasonable time off "to take action" necessary in consequence of the death of a dependant. This can include making funeral arrangements, attending the funeral, registering the death, applying for probate and similar practical arrangements.
  • However, the psychological effects of bereavement do not trigger a right to time off under s.57A. Although the death of a dependant may well result in sadness and depression, the section was not intended to introduce a right to compassionate leave.