Being a carer can often be unpredictable and arrangements can be tricky to balance in the workplace.
To make your employees (who may be carers) comfortable, you may need to consider making reasonable changes in your workplace. This can allow your staff to choose shift patterns that allow them to continue caring.
As an employer, you should support an employee if they come to you with any concerns and commitments or you may face.
In this guide, we’ll explain what carers leave is, what employees are entitled to, and how they can apply for it.
What is Carers Leave?
Carer’s leave is when an employee may have to take time off work for family reasons.
These reasons can include things like a sudden illness, or help needed in an emergency.
This emergency must only involve anyone classed as a dependent.
A dependent is classed as one of the following:
- Civil partner.
- Friends, relatives or adopted children who live in the same house.
This includes step-relations, as well as adopted family members.
Who is Entitled to Carers Leave?
Carers leave entitlement may be given to an employee from day one.
Carer’s leave is unpaid, so employees should apply for social aid from the Government website.
And you should aim to keep their job open for their return to work.
Are There Exceptions for Parental Leave?
This is unpaid carers leave for parents so they can look after their children’s wellbeing. A child can be cared for up to the age of 18 years old.
There are number of examples for parental leave:
- Spent time with their children.
- If their child is sick.
- Look at new schools for their children.
- Settle children into new childcare.
- Visiting grandparents.
Employees rights such as pay, holidays, and returning to work are all protected by parental leave.
Do You Get Paid for Carers Leave?
There is no legal requirement for you to pay carers leave in the UK. As an employer, it is up to you to pay as much or as little as you wish for individual employees.
Make sure you check your employment contracts, handbooks, and policies to outline your company’s rules on carers leave pay.
How to Apply for Carers Leave
An employee will need to speak to their employer as soon as possible to discuss how much time they need off.
If an employee has an emergency, they may not be able to let you know beforehand. But they should try and contact you as soon as possible.
Employees do not need to give written proof for carers leave.
Get advice on Carers Leave with BrightHR
To support your employees with their concerns and family commitments, you must try and understand why they need carer’s leave.
If an employee wants to take time off to care for someone, it’s your decision on how much pay you will provide. Refer to their contract and see how much pay they will receive.
BrightHR can relieve any stress you might have about carers leave and help you prepare for an employee’s application.
If you need any help when creating your carers leave sample letter, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
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