Losing someone so close to you has to be one of the hardest things you can ever go through. When this happens, you might want to take some time off and try to come to terms with your loss. The last thing you need during your mourning period is having to show up for work every day.
With over 1.5 million employees, Walmart is a huge corporation and has bereavement policies in place just for these unfortunate scenarios. So, what rights do Walmart workers have if they need bereavement leave? What is Walmart’s bereavement policy, and how do you go about it?
What Is Walmart’s Bereavement Policy?
Walmart offers three days of paid bereavement leave to all employees when an immediate family member passes away. Employees can usually also request extra time off, unpaid, as personal time off (PTO.)
To learn more about Walmart’s bereavement leave policies, keep reading…
Walmart offers their associates a standard immediate family member bereavement policy. The policy gives them the freedom to excuse themselves from work to attend the deceased’s funeral and a grieving period.
While this time doesn’t count against you, it comes with certain criteria. To be eligible for the leave, you ought to first confirm with your supervisor that you will be absent for a certain period. In addition, there are variations when it comes to payment depending on the circumstances.
How Do You Confirm Your Absence?
Before you get approval for bereavement leave, you need to get in touch with your direct supervisor and have a conversation with them.
However, before they grant your request, you will have to tell them the day you intend to start your leave and how long you will be away.
Besides their standard paid time off, Walmart allows its associates up to three days of bereavement leave.
Sometimes, providing proof of death is a requirement. This could vary based on the department you work in, but a death certificate, visitation booklet and obituary can be requested by management.
Is Bereavement An Excused Absence At Walmart?
Bereavement is an excused absence at Walmart but you have to call ahead and make sure your supervisor is aware beforehand.
Walmart will grant their employees their three days of bereavement leave and not penalize them for their absence.
Who Qualifies For Bereavement At Walmart?
All regular associates at Walmart qualify for bereavement leave. Unfortunately, seasonal or temporary employees do not qualify.
If you are a regular associate, whether full-time or part-time, you will be able to take advantage of Walmart’s bereavement policy.
Why Do You Need To State The Number Of Days You Will Be Off?
Your supervisor needs to be aware of the duration you will be away from work for scheduling and planning purposes.
While many people will be back to work within the standard three days, some will need a longer grieving window because of cultural traditions.
Do You Get Paid While On Bereavement Leave?
Walmart pays you fully for all the three days of your leave. As soon as those days have passed, it is the managers’ and supervisors’ decision to decide on how to cover the extra days.
For this reason, if you know ahead of time that you will be away for longer than three days, it is imperative to communicate with your supervisor.
Sometimes, if the deceased was a close relative or there are certain cultural circumstances, additional paid days may be available.
However, there is also a possibility that your supervisor could ask you to take unpaid or vacation time to cover the extra days you spent away from work.
Your supervisor will consider the following when evaluating the length of your bereavement leave:
- Your relationship with the deceased
- The time it will take for you to attend the funeral or spend time with your loved ones
- The total number of times you have taken leave in the last year
- The effect of your leave on the operations of their Walmart facility
What Does Walmart Consider As Immediate Family?
Immediate family includes siblings, parents, spouses, children, parents-in-law, grandchildren, grandparents, children-in-law, and siblings-in-law.
Walmart’s rules and guidelines describe an immediate relative as someone linked to an employee. According to the bereavement policy, there are many ways to be a family.
It could include adopted or married kids and people living together in a civil marriage or partnership.
Family also covers an employee’s parents, siblings, kids, spouses, grandkids and grandparents. These are the people you may be looking after during office hours. Family could also imply anyone you live with.
With that having been said, Walmart staff can take bereavement leave following the death of most of their close relatives under this broad definition. Close family in this concept doesn’t only refer to blood relatives.
Is Walmart Required By Law To Provide Bereavement Leave?
Currently, there is no federal statute requiring employers to provide bereavement leave. So, Walmart’s bereavement policy is actually very generous.
The only state requiring employers to provide their employees with bereavement leave is Oregon. It allows workers to take up to 12 weeks yearly for bereavement leave. However, this leave is unpaid.
If you have to go on bereavement leave, it is important to check your Walmart paycheck stubs just to make sure your time off is paid for.
What Are The Benefits Of Bereavement Leave?
Taking a bereavement leave has re following benefits to employers:
- Fosters productivity as it allows staff to take time off to mourn
- Ensures that employees do not feel the need to work while distracted
- Promotes company loyalty, as it shows compassion and empathy for employees when they need understanding and support.
- Builds a stronger bond with the employee in need of bereavement leave
Other Reasons For Taking Leave At Walmart
Taking a leave of absence (LOA), involves taking a considerable amount of time from work for specific reasons. It could be medical concerns for you or your loved ones, military service or the birth of a child. It could be paid or unpaid depending on the reason for taking it.
Here are the various types of leaves available at Walmart:
- FMLA Leave: The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) permits you to take some time off from usual working hours for a qualifying reason. It could be a medical condition, foster care placement or family emergency.
- Personal leave: This leave will allow you time away from work for situations outlined in the Personal Leave policy. Such situations include bereavement, education, care for a military spouse, birth or other compelling factors.
- Military leave: It allows you to take some time off to serve in the military. If the amount of money you make in the military is less than that you make at Walmart, it could make up the difference with a pay differential under qualifying conditions.
You can only be eligible for an LOA if you have worked at Walmart for at least a year. In addition, you need to have also worked at least 1250 hours in the year preceding your leave.
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While employees have limited options when it comes to taking leave, Walmart understands everything has its own timing. There is a time to work and a time to grieve. This is the reason they will allow you a standard three-day leave in the unfortunate event where your loved one passes away.
In addition, they will add you a few more days if need be. It is also important to note that the need for days off increases under occasions such as sickness and childbirth.
It is true that different policies may have different views depending on your workplace and the position you hold. But if you need some time off, you can always agree with your supervisor as long as it is in accordance with Walmart’s policy.