Effects of new maternity law
I was pregnant last year and was due on Nov 16, 2016. As per Maternity act, I took illness due to pregnany leave from 3.10.16 to 2.11.16 and then earned leaves till 15.11.2016 and post that took 12 weeks leave till 13.2.17. Then used earned leaves till 8.3.17.As I am breast feeding, requested for additional leave without pay till week 22 (15.4.17) which they obliged. As the new maternity act has come to place, can I avail this as paid leave and take the additional 4 weeks?
As per the new amendment to the act, the maternity benefit has been increased from 12 weeks to 26 weeks for the first two children. If you are already a mother of 2 or more children then in that case you are only entitled to a maternity benefit of 12 weeks even after the latest amendment in the Maternity Benefit Act. After the woman has availed her maternity benefit, it is at the discretion of the employer to allow the woman to work from home – if the work is of such a nature which can be done from home.
But let me inform you that this is all mentioned under the latest amendment to the aforesaid act, which unfortunately has not come out for enforcement. The new law has been passed by the Lok Sabha though but it has still not received the assent of the president. (general information : for a bill to become an act – after being passed by both the houses – assent in the form of president’s signature is needed to make it a law – then subsequently it needs an official gazette notification that shows its applicability). Therefore, the assent is awaited and so is the gazette notification.
So, the law that is applicable to your situation is the old version and still The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961. Thereby, making you avail only 12 weeks of maternity leave – justified as per law.
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