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  • Face to face counselling sessions and 24-hour helpline extended to support terminal illness diagnosis
  • More than half of employees would consider quitting their job if employers do not support them after bereavement1
  • MetLife research shows 76% of staff value counselling services offered by employers2

MetLife is expanding its bereavement and probate service as it focuses on the need for employers and employees to help provide valuable support to  colleagues during their time of need.

It has expanded the support available alongside its Group Life policy to include up to six face-to-face counselling sessions as well as highlighting that its 24-hour phone counselling is available to families and the terminally ill.

MetLife believes intermediaries, employers and employees will benefit from increased support following a  bereavement and has launched a toolkit including guides, videos and advice on helping to manage the impact bereavement can have in the workplace. The support toolkit is designed to be used in various circumstances, including specific support on the loss of a colleague, and also employees affected by a personal bereavement.

Research by the National Council for Palliative Care* found 56% of employees would consider resigning if their employer did not support them following the loss of a loved one.

MetLife’s own research shows strong support for employee assistance programmes providing counselling on bereavement and other issues – 76% of staff said they value EAPs they are offered through group risk products.

Tom Gaynor, Employee Benefits Director at MetLife UK said: “‘Employers’ attitudes and coping strategies for bereavement and terminal illness vary dramatically. We’ve launched this enhanced service in order to put a framework in place that offers compassionate support for employers and their staff when they need it most.

“Employee assistance programmes provided alongside group life policies can play a major role in helping employers and employees come to terms with their loss and are clearly valued by staff. Enhancing our Group Life offering makes sense and we hope the toolkit will help raise awareness in the industry of the need to focus on bereavement and probate support.”

Advice for employees affected by bereavement includes asking about flexible working at their workplace as well as liaising with their line manager so that they are aware of any potential issues and can advise on taking the time off that is needed. Having a bereavement policy is essential for organisations to ensure they are fully prepared should the unexpected happen.

Bereavement and probate support is a complimentary service available alongside MetLife Group Life policies. The service is also available to the families of those affected and MetLife intermediaries too. The helpline provides practical and emotional support. The service is available 24/7, 365 days a year, and is also available for those coming to terms with the diagnosis of a terminal illness.