Employers are required to provide paid day off for their employees during Festival holidays, including public and religious festivals. There are many festivals and religious holidays in India, but only the following ones are fully covered by National public holidays:
- Republic Day – 26th January
- Independence Day – 15th August
- Gandhi Jayanti (Gandhi’s Birthday) – 2nd October
PTO (Paid Time Off)
- Vacation/ Privilege Leave or Earned Leave
Shops and Commercial Establishments Act The Act applies to all establishments other than factories, such as IT/ service companies, shops, etc. Every state in India has enacted their own Shops and Commercial Establishment Act.
Privilege or earned leave is accrued in the beginning of the of calendar year or from the date the employment starts through December 31st of that calendar year. Earned Leave is calculated on a month basis for the calendar year. Rate is based on company policy. Employees are entitled to 1.25 days of vacation per month, but these values can vary from state to state. The maximum of earned leave that can be accrued and carried over depends on the state in which the company is. In some states it can go from 30 to up to 45 or 60 days. Employees are entitled to carry forward any unused accrued Earned leave into the next year. Employees are entitled to receive earned leave pay at the termination of employment or during the service. Employees are entitled to 5 privileged leaves for every 4 months of work.
Under the Shops and Establishment Act, employers are required to provide their employees with up to 6 days of paid leave to accommodate any urgent or unforeseen personal requirements. Normally, companies provide employees with a minimum of 0.5 days to a maximum of 3 days of leave per month. If the leave exceeds 3 days, employees should take the earned leave. Casual leave cannot be carried over into the next year or paid at the termination. It cannot be taken in addition to Privilege leave or Sick leave.
Employees are entitled to up to 12 days of sick leave per year. Employees are required to provide a medical certificate if the leave exceeds two or three days. Sick leave cannot be carried over into the next year or paid at the termination. It can be taken in addition to Privilege leave.
Rollovers and payout of unused hours
- Use-it-or-lose-it policy
Accrued Privilege leave can be carried over into the next year.
- PTO payout at the termination
Employers are required to pay any accrued vacation at the termination of the year or employment.
Maternity Benefit Act of 1961 requires employers to provide 26 weeks of paid leave to any woman who has worked for at least 80 days in the 12 months preceding the date of expected delivery. Leave can be taken 8 weeks before the expected delivery date and finished at least 6 weeks after the birth. For employees who are having 2 or more surviving children, are entitled to up to 12 weeks of paid maternity leave.
Employees are entitled to an additional month of leave due to medical conditions related to pregnancy, delivery, premature birth, miscarriage, medical termination or additional two weeks in case of a tubectomy operation.
Employers must not require a pregnant employee to continue with their work for 10 weeks before the expected delivery date.
Maternity Leave for Adoptive and Commissioning Mothers
Employees are entitled to up to 12 weeks of Maternity leave to adopt a child under the age of three months from the date of adoption as well as to the Commissioning mothers. The commissioning mother has been defined as a biological mother who uses her egg to create an embryo planted in any other woman.
Pregnant female employees cannot be discharged or dismissed due to pregnancy or pregnancy-related medical conditions.
Insured employees are entitled to receive maternity benefits in the following cases:
- Confinement-payable for a period of 12 weeks (84 days)
- Miscarriage or Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP)-payable for 26 weeks (182 days) from the date following a miscarriage.
- Sickness arising out of Pregnancy, Confinement, Premature birth-payable for a period not exceeding one month.
- In the event of the death of the Insured Woman during confinement leaving behind a child, Maternity Benefit is payable to her nominee.
The maternity benefit rate is 100% of average daily wages.
There is no law in India that requires employers to provide employees with paternity leave. However, some companies decide to provide these benefits for their employees.
Jury Duty Leave/Voting Leave
There is no law requiring employers to provide time off for their employees to take Jury Duty Leave or Voting Leave.
India Leave Laws – Bereavement Leave
There is no law requiring employers to provide bereavement leave for their employees in the private sector. It is up to an employer’s policy.