Policy Manual

Bereavement Policy

Regular staff members are provided with paid time off for making arrangements, settling family affairs, bereavement, and/or attending the funeral or memorial service of a member of the immediate family. The University reserves the right to require documentation of the death (e.g., death certificate, obituary, documentation from funeral home).

Time off for death in the family is arranged by notifying the staff member's immediate supervisor or department head. For more information on how to track and manage time away from work, click here.

Questions on this policy should be referred to the Division of Human Resources/Staff and Labor Relations.


A maximum of five (5) days off with pay is permitted upon the death of a regular staff member's: 

spouse or University registered same sex domestic partner (in accordance with Policy 716)*


brother or sister

parent or guardian

son-in-law or daughter-in-law

mother-in-law or father-in-law

brother-in-law or sister-in-law

*This five (5) day allowance also applies to the above-listed relatives of the staff member's University registered same sex domestic partner.

Direct step relations are included in this category.

A maximum of three (3) days off with pay is permitted upon the death of a regular staff member's directly related:



aunt or uncle

One (1) day off with pay is permitted upon the death of a regular staff member's directly related:

first cousin

nephew or niece

The allotted days off with pay do not have to be consecutive. However, the allotted time off should be used within a year of the death of the family member.

A staff member may make a request to his/her supervisor to use Paid Time Off for death of family members or friends not covered by this policy or if the staff member needs additional days off in excess of the time allowances outlined in Section 609.1 due to the death of a family member covered by this policy.


University employees covered by Collective Bargaining Agreements should refer to the appropriate article in their contract.

Note: Dealing with the death of a loved one is never easy. To help ease the impact of losing a family member, Penn offers access to pre-planning and at-need funeral and concierge services at no extra cost. Click here for more information.

Policy Number: 609
Effective Date: 9/06/2011
Supersedes Policy Number(s): 508, 609 (09/01/1991, 10/14/2002)
Applicability: All Regular Staff Members
Cross-reference: Policy 602Policy 607Policy 716

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