Parents who lost a pregnancy at an advanced stage or whose infant passed away within 30 days of birth, are entitled to take part in a separation ceremony in the hospital, a funeral and/or burial, according to their wishes.
Who is Eligible?
- Parents who have experienced the loss of a dead fetus:
- When the fetus dies before birth and after the 20th week of pregnancy.
- When the fetus dies before the 20th week but weighed above 500 grams.
- Parents who have experienced the loss of an infant:
- When the baby dies after birth but before 30 days pass.
- When the baby dies after 30 days, but the baby was hospitalized from birth and didn't leave the hospital.
How to Claim It?
- A hospital representative should present the parents with the 3 options they have to choose from:
- The hospital will take care of the burial, without any family involvement.
- The family will take an active role in the separation at the hospital and then the hospital will take care of the burial without any family involvement.
- The family will take an active part in the entire burial process and they are able to choose a civil or religious burial.
- The parents' choice will be documented on the appropriate form.
- Families who choose to participate in the cemetery burial process will be referred by the hospital to burial societies that deal with the burial of infants and fetuses.
- For a list of burial societies that are authorized to deal with the burial of infants and fetuses see the Ministry of Religious Services website.
- To receive more information on non-Jewish burial societies, contact the Ministry of Interior, Beit Hadfus St. Givaat Shaul, Jerusalem or by phone at: 02-655-3604.
- The burial will be carried out in a designated and marked section of the cemetery.
- In the case of a "nefel" (a fetus that died in-utero before 20 weeks of pregnancy or that weighed less than 500 grams):
- Parents that experience pregnancy loss after the 12th week, but before it has the status of a dead fetus, are entitled to have a private burial at their own expense (until the 12 week the burial is taken care of by the hospital without any family presence).
- If the hospital decides that an autopsy should be performed on the fetus it must get the consent of at least one of the parents, on condition that the other parent is not against it.
- Parents experiencing distress as a result of the pregnancy loss may be eligible for Psychotherapy or another type of therapy through their health fund.
- In the case of a stillbirth (birth of a dead fetus) that is after 22 weeks of pregnancy, the mother is entitled to the majority of the rights given to someone who gives birth to a live child (such as maternity leave, maternity pay, etc). For more information see Rights for a mother and her spouse after a still birth.
- In the case of a miscarriage or still birth before 22 weeks, a woman is entitled to certain rights in her place of work. For more information see Employment Rights for Women after a Miscarriage.
Laws and Regulations
- The Medical Director's Circular no. 24/2014 from 23.06.2014 - treatment of dead fetuses, infants and human body parts.
English translation and maintenance by The Shira Pransky Project.