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Which family members does compassionate leave cover?

by , 17 April 2014
Compassionate leave and bereavement leave are other names for family responsibility leave. People normally referred to it as compassionate or bereavement leave when they have to take leave for a funeral. But don't be fooled, this is still family responsibility leave and only allows for three days leave. Here's what you need to know about which family members it covers and more.

'My husband's sister's boyfriend's mother's uncle just passed away and I need to go to the funeral'
You don't always have to give family responsibility leave in these situations! 
Whose deaths does family responsibility leave cover?
According to Labour Law for Managers family responsibility leave covers the death of your employee's:
- Spouse or life partner
- Parent 
- Adoptive parent 
- Grandparent
- Child, adopted child
- Grandchild 
- Sibling
The BCEA doesn't say anything about the death of In-Laws as a reason to grant family responsibility leave. While this doesn't mean you can't grant it, it just means that it's up to you to decide. 
And that's just the tip of the iceberg…
Forget the paperwork – it isn't necessary!
Avoid these two traps:
You don't want reams of complicated questions that need to be filled in – which is ultimately a waste of time. You undoubtedly have little time to waste. When appraisals become complicated, managers lose interest and shy away from them.
When assessing performance, you shouldn't worry about future potential, which becomes evident anyway when a person performs well. Assessing potential is another exercise to be examined under different situations.
What else you need to know about family responsibility leave
Employee responsibilities can vary and for most it's up to you to decide if it's a good enough reason. But there are some things that family responsibility leave entitlements cover. 
For example, if their child's sick, they can take family responsibility leave. But if the person who looks after the child is sick, they aren't entitled to this leave. 
Family leave includes 'paternal leave' which isn't actually a different type of leave. Male employees whose child has just been born, also only entitled to three days of leave.
Labour Guide says that only employees who've been with you four months can take family leave. Again it's up to you if a new employee asks for family leave and you want to grant it.  
If you want to grant more than the normal three days family responsibility leave entitlements, you can. Just remember these basics about family responsibility leave. 

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