Maternity Leave And Policy In India- 2023
Mar 05, 2022
The recent amendments in the Maternity Benefits Act, of 1961 have made India, one of the 16 countries in the world that offer the longest maternity leave to women employees. There has been a lot of confusion about what are the benefits available to female employees before and post-pregnancy, hence; we, at Morph Maternity, have found answers to common queries of working women in India so that you needn’t look everywhere.
How Long The Maternity Leave Period Is In India And In What Sectors It Is Applicable?
Post-amendments to the Maternity Benefits Act, of 1961; the Ministry of Labor in India has made it mandatory for companies employing 10 or more employees to give 26 weeks of maternity leave to female employees i.e. full paid leave from work. Government employees already receive the same benefit and now the private sector has been included as well.
Who Is Eligible For Maternity Leave?
For female employees to be eligible for maternity benefits, they should have been working as an employee in an establishment for a period of at least 80 days in the past 12 months. Women expecting post-2 children will get 12 weeks of maternity leave only.
Can The Maternity Leave Be Split Between Pre And Post-delivery Periods?
Yes, the benefit can be availed by women employees up to 8 weeks before the date of delivery and the remaining 18 weeks can be availed post-delivery.
Are Adoptive Mothers Eligible For Maternity Leave?
Yes, the latest amendments to the act have extended maternity benefits to adoptive and commissioning mothers as well. Women employees, falling under this category, will be entitled to 12 weeks of maternity leave from adoption.
Also read: Do Dads Really Need Paternity Leave?
Other Benefits Offered Under Maternity Benefit Amendment Act
The recent amendments in the Maternity Benefit Act related to maternity leave, have made available certain other facilities as well to women employees –
- Work from Home – Women employees can opt for the work-from-home option after the expiry of 26 weeks of maternity leave; however, this depends upon the nature of work and on mutually agreed terms between employee and employer.
- Crèche Facility – It has been made mandatory for every establishment with 50 or more employees to make crèche facilities available. Women employees should be permitted to visit the crèche 4 times a day.
Recent Changes to Maternity Leave Policy in India
In 2017, the Maternity Benefit Act in India was amended to better support working mothers. The analysis of the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act of 2017 showed significant changes to the maternity leave policy in India.
One major change was an increase in the duration of maternity leave from 12 to 26 weeks, providing mothers with more time to care for their newborns. Additionally, the Act extended maternity leave to adoptive and commissioning mothers, recognizing the importance of family planning and equal opportunities.
Furthermore, the Act introduced a work-from-home option for nursing mothers, enabling them to balance work and breastfeeding effectively. These changes were implemented to assist working mothers and their infants.
Also read : 5 Things A New Dad Should Know About Baby Care
Maternity leave is essential for pregnant women in order to care for themselves and their babies. Talk to your employer and see what benefits you can avail yourself of. Plan your working schedule around pregnancy accordingly so that you can enjoy this phase without experiencing too much stress about work, salary, and other things.
Enjoy your journey to motherhood!
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