Does the right to time off for dependants include time off for sickness absence caused by grief?

No. In Forster v Cartwright Black [2004] IRLR 781 EAT the Employment Appeal Tribunal held that grief-induced sickness absence is not time off to take action that is necessary "in consequence of the death of a dependant". The phrase extends only to such matters as time off to make funeral arrangements, register the death and apply for probate.

Sickness absence caused by grief should be dealt with in accordance with the employer's policy on sickness absence, or the employer may have a policy on compassionate leave, or may use its discretion to allow a period of paid time off in these circumstances.