Compliance Calendar for Oct, 2017
Professional Tax – States – Remittances
Doubling of gratuity payment and Increase in Dearness Allowance
The Union cabinet on Tuesday approved two worker-friendly proposals.
The gratuity withdrawal limits for staff in private companies and public-sector units have been doubled to Rs20 lakh. At present, even if a worker accumulates more than Rs10 lakh as gratuity contribution, the withdrawal is capped at Rs10 lakh and the rest is paid out after deduction of taxes. To be sure, this will only come into effect once the Payment of Gratuity Act is amended. The cabinet on Tuesday approved the introduction of the amendment bill in Parliament.
The cabinet also approved an increase in the dearness allowance (DA) and dearness relief for over 11 million central government employees and pensioners. The 1% increase in dearness allowance to central government staff and dearness relief to pensioners is with effect from 1 July.
Discontinuance Of Physical Submission Of Form 9
The EPFO has ordered the discontinuance of Form 9 in physical form in respect of all the members joining as well as the establishments being covered on or after 1st October 2017. The EPFO has cited reasons that since employee master is available in the system containing all relevant details of the employee viz. name, gender, DOB, DOJ, father’s/spouse’s name as well as Aadhar & bank details fetched through ECR, submission of Form No. 9 in physical form by the employer can be discontinued. The IS division has been ordered to make provision for maintenance of Form No. 9 electronically and making it available for various purposes with effect from 1st October 2017.
But for those employee’s who’s joining date is prior 01/10/2017, for them employer still need to submit Form 9 in hard copy with their respective PF office.
Increase In Wage Ceiling And Death Benefits For Dependents For Schemes Under Haryana LWF
The Government of Haryana has increased the wage ceiling eligibility to receive benefit under LWF Scheme for Cycle, Sewing Machine and LTC (Leave Travel Concession) from Rupees ten thousand to eighteen thousand. Henceforth, the labourers earning upto eighteen thousand will also get the benefit of reimbursement from the LWF under schemes for purchasing Cycle, Sewing Machine and LTC (Leave Travel Concession). Furthermore no bill is required to be submitted for purchase of Cycle and Sewing Machine. The LWF notification also states that, death benefit payable to widow/dependent of contributor to the Death Benefit Scheme has been increased from one lakh to two lakh rupees. The death benefit is payable only for cases of death outside the purview of the respective industrial and commercial establishment. The changes made to the schemes will be effective from 14th September 2017
Launch of No Child Labour (PENCIL) Portal
The Union Home Minister has launched Platform for Effective Enforcement for No Child Labour (PENCIL) Portal and released Standing Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the enforcement of legal framework against child labour. The PENCIL is an electronic platform that aims at involving Centre, State, District, Governments, civil society and the general public in achieving the target of child labour free society. The PENCIL Portal (pencil.gov.in) has various components, namely Child Tracking System, Complaint Corner, State Government, National Child Labour Project and Convergence. The SOP is aimed at creating a ready reckoner for trainers, practitioners and monitoring agencies to ensure complete prohibition of child labour and protection of adolescents from hazardous labour, ultimately leading to Child Labour Free India. This will be effective from 26th Sep, 2017.
Improving working conditions of labourers through reform in Labour Laws
- Amendment to the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965 by which eligibility limit for payment of bonus enhanced from Rs 10,000/- to Rs. 21,000/- per month and the Calculation Ceiling from Rs. 3,500/- to Rs. 7,000/- or the minimum wages
- Payment of Wages (Amendment) Act, 2017 enabling payment of Wages to employees by Cash or Cheque or crediting it to their bank account.
- Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Act, 2016 provides for complete ban on employment of children below 14 years in any occupation or process.
- Maternity Benefit Amendment Act, 2017, increases the paid maternity leave from 12 weeks to 26 weeks.
- The Employee Compensation (Amendment) Act, seeks to rationalize penalties and strengthen the rights of the workers under the Act.
- Ministry has notified “Ease of Compliance to maintain Registers under various Labour Laws Rules, 2017” on 21st February 2017 which has in effect replaced the 56 Registers/Forms under 9 Central Labour Laws and Rules made there under in to 5 common Registers/Forms. This will save efforts, costs and lessen the compliance burden by various establishments.
- A Model Shops and Establishments (RE&CS) Bill, 2016 has been circulated to all States/UTs for adoption with appropriate modification. The said Bill inter alia provides for freedom to operate an Establishment for 365 days in a year without any restriction on opening/closing time and enables employment of women during night shifts if adequate safety provisions exist.
- A category i.e. Fixed Term Employment has been introduced under Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946 to impart flexibility to an establishment to employ people in case of Apparel Manufacturing Sector to meet the fluctuating demands of the sector due to its seasonal nature.