COVID–19 Relief Measures in Employment and Labor Laws

The Ministry of Labour and Employment has announced various relief measures for the benefit of labour and manpower employed in companies, factories and establishments, amidst this global pandemic which is empowering the world. These measures definitely provide the much-needed support and reassurance to the work force, registered with the Ministry. The details of relief measures are stated below:

The Employee’s Provident Fund & Miscellaneous Act, 1952 (EPF):
  • As per notification, EPF Scheme has allowed withdrawal of non-refundable advance to EPF member. The permissible limit of withdrawal is upto the full amount of basic wages and dearness allowance for 3 months or upto 75% of the amount standing to the member’s credit in the EPF account, whichever is less.
  • Further, as per media reports, Government has given relaxation to the members of EPF, enabling them to withdraw EPF balance without necessary KYC
  • As per announcement made, Government will contribute 24% to EPF (12% each for employee and employer) for next 3 months. However, this will be applicable for those establishments that have up to 100 employees and 90% of employees earn < Rs.15,000 per month.
The Employee’s State Insurance Corporation Act -1948 (ESI):

The due date for deposit of ESI Contribution has been extended, as under:

Particulars Period Current Due Date Extended Due Date
Due date for deposit of ESI contribution February 2020 15th March 2020 15th April 2020
Due date for deposit of ESI contribution March 2020  15th April 2020 15th May 2020
Other Labour Laws:
  • Necessary advisory has been issued to employers/owners of all shops & commercial establishments, factories, etc., not to terminate the services of employee’s or reduce their wages.
  • Necessary advisory has been issued to employers/owners of all shops & commercial establishments, factories, etc., to give timely disbursement of wages/salary for the period of lockdown.
  • Labour Ministry has issued advisory to all States / Union Territories to use Cess fund for the welfare of construction workers who sustain their livelihood on daily wages and it is applicable on all shops & commercial establishments registered in Building and Other Construction Workers Act-1996.