Hi, I'm working as HR in a private limited company with 40 employees in Karnataka. We are implementing a maternity leave policy this year,
Do we need to pay a 6-month salary to the employee in her ML, if yes. Can we pay only 50% salary or only basic salary as in payslip.
Please confirm.

From India, Bengaluru
Labour Law & Hr Consultant
Industrial Relations And Labour Laws
Partner - Risk Management
Nagarkar Vinayak L
Hr And Employee Relations Consultant

Dear Deepak,

First, the Maternity Benefit Act,1961, being a Central Labor Legislation, would be applicable to all States in the Union of India alike only.

Second, you please go through the definition of the term 'wages' u/s sec.3(n) read with sec. 5(1) of the MB Act,1961. In short you have to pay the entire wages including all allowances drawn by the employee prior to her entering on 26 weeks leave due to maternity.

Third and most importantly, the salary for the period of maternity shall be paid in advance by the employer on receipt of a notice from the employee. Go through section 6 of the MB Act,1961.

From India, Salem
Dear colleague, To add to what the learned colleague has stated, you have to pay medical bonus of Rs 3500/- lump-sum. Regards, Vinayak Nagarkar HR and Employee Relations Consultant
From India, Mumbai
Hi ,

But it is very small private company we are finding difficultly in paying full salary in pandemic, and still unable to bear expenses upon all the paying full salary who is not working in ML is difficult, any alternate?? please


From India, Bengaluru
we are also removing few employees who are not good at work only because of our revenue is going down. Keeping all this either we can give 50% os salary or only basic salary.
From India, Bengaluru
When your function is to recognise the Human Resource you should not think otherwise. An entrepreneur may think of paying 50% of salary or even terminating pregnant employees but you should not. If you are to follow the law follow it but never dilute it according to situations.
From India, Kannur
In a proprietor ship firm having 40 employees .... Can we pay 70% salary to employees for the reason of no business in this pandemic? Is employer has right to deduct salary ?
From India, Chennai
Whatever be the constitution of the organisation, whether proprietorship or company, the employer cannot reduce the salary due to reason that he is under financial crisis. However, if the employees agree for a reduction so that the crisis could be overcome you can do it but it should be applicable across all the employees irrespective of grades and sex.
From India, Kannur
For the normal employees, the employer can reduce the salary of employees.
He will need the consent of the employees concerned for the same.
In alternate, he may terminate the employees following normal procedure (including holding departmental enquiries, etc)
The their possibility is to retrench employees, for which he needs to follow the regulations under Industrial Dispute Act (basically, newest employees are to be retrenched first.

Reducing the wages to a new level by mutual agreement is better. Mostly employees will agree as the alternate is to lose jobs. Ofcouse, it can not be Lower than minimum wages.

However, the pregnant women are protected under Maternity Benefit Act and their salary can not be reduced, even if they agree. Financial capabilities, etc is not relevant in face of the statute.

From India, Mumbai
Dear Deepak,

We, as people having some experience in industrial relations and compliance matters, are very conscious about the difficulties faced by an employer of a start-up unit, particularly in the face of the present pandemic and its unprecedented negative impact on everyone in the society.
Juxtaposing your difficulties and your legal obligations, we are unable to suggest any concrete ideas at this stage. It is better you include your employees also in the process of rehabilitation of the unit as a whole and decide matters like rightsizing of the employees strength, temporary moratorium on hike of pay and other benefits subject to the applicable statutes and other austerity measures befitting the present crisis situation.

From India, Salem

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