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Parental bereavement pay - what you're entitled to and how to get it

Mae’r cyngor hwn yn berthnasol i Cymru

You might be able to get parental bereavement pay if you’re either:

  • paying income tax and national insurance through Pay As You Earn (PAYE) - these show on your payslip as ‘deductions’

To get parental bereavement pay both the following must also apply:

  • you’ve worked for your employer for at least 26 weeks by the week before when your child died or was stillborn 
  • your average pay, before tax, is a minimum of £120 a week

You’ll get either £151.20 a week or 90% of your average weekly pay (before tax), if this is lower. You’ll be paid by your employer in the same way you get your normal pay.

Your average pay is worked out by looking at your pay over the 8 weeks before the one when your child died.

Contact your nearest Citizens Advice if you're close to the £120 minimum pay and need to work out your exact average.

Get parental bereavement pay

You should let your employer know that you want to claim parental bereavement pay for the time you’re off work. 

Try to give your employer at least 28 days’ notice before your leave starts. If you can’t give 28 days’ notice, you should let them know as soon as possible.

Let them know in writing that you’re entitled to it and when you’ll be taking parental bereavement leave. You should include:

  • the date of your child’s death
  • the dates when your parental bereavement leave will start and end

You also need to include a ‘declaration of entitlement’, which means you say:

  • who you are
  • your relationship to the child
  • that you’re entitled to get parental bereavement pay

Example ‘declaration of entitlement'

My name is Josie Storey. I'm the mother of Jamie Storey, who died on 6 April 2020, aged 11. As your employee, I am entitled to parental bereavement pay. I will be taking parental bereavement leave for 1 week on 4 May 2020 and I am asking for parental bereavement pay for the time I’m on leave.

If your employer refuses to pay your parental bereavement pay

Contact Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) if your employer won't pay you parental bereavement pay and you think they should. Explain why you think you have a right to parental bereavement pay. HMRC will confirm whether you should get parental bereavement pay.

You'll need to contact HMRC within 6 months of when your employer tells you they won't pay your parental bereavement pay.

Your employer has to give you their reasons on a form called ‘SPBP1’. Have this form ready when you call HMRC - or tell them if you weren't given it.

HMRC Statutory Payments Disputes Team
Room BP 2301
Benton Park View
Longbenton
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE98 1YS

Telephone: 0300 056 0630

If HMRC think you should get parental bereavement pay, they’ll tell your employer to pay you. If your employer still doesn’t pay, HMRC will fine them and pay you directly.

If you can’t contact HMRC, the National Insurance general enquiries helpline can give advice about statutory payments.

National Insurance: general enquiries helpline
Telephone: 0300 200 3500
Textphone: 0300 200 3519
Open Monday to Friday: 8am to 8pm
Saturday: 8am to 4pm

Your call is likely to be free of charge if you have a phone deal that includes free calls to landlines - find out more about calling 030 numbers.

Appeal an HMRC decision

You can appeal to the tax tribunal if HMRC support your employer.

You can also ask HMRC to look at their decision again if something’s changed, or if you have new information.

Before you appeal, it’s a good idea to contact your nearest Citizens Advice for help.

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