Legal FAQs

15 Nov

Here are some questions that are frequently asked by HR
Q1. Is Bonus right of every employee. For calculating bonus does the interest earned by Company in FDRs is also to be counted.

A. Bonus is something given in addition to what is usual or strictly due; money or anything given in addition to an employee’s usual pay or salary. The payment of Bonus Act 1965 provides for payment of bonus to persons employed in a factory and in every other establishment employing twenty or more persons. In calculating bonus, interest earned by a company on fixed deposits is to be excluded.

Q2. I am a Research Scientist working in University of Delhi. I have been working on various projects for a period of five years. Do I have a right to be regularized?

A. Being a Research Scientist though you don’t have a right to be regularized but your association with the University should be given due consideration at the time of the appointment .You stand a better chance than any other candidate.

Q3. I am a Lecturer in a College, Delhi. A person has been appointed as a Lecturer of History in my college. The person who has been appointed as not even studied History as a specialized subject in his graduation. Can his appointment be challenged ?

A. Yes, you can challenge the appointment on the ground of lack of proper qualification by filing a Petition in this regard.

Q4. I am in Government Servant working in Ministry of Defence. A Departmental Enquiry was ordered against me. I was not convicted by the report of the enquiry. My senior had again ordered enquiry into the same charges. Can he do so?

A. Your senior has no power whatsoever to order another enquiry on the basis of the same facts and materials against you. But in case some new facts and materials come into light such enquiry can be ordered.

Q5. I had been working in Pvt. Ltd. Company for 2 and half years as a permanent employee. As per the company rules I was eligible for medical and LTC benefits. When I leave the job they suppose to give me the whole Medical and LTC benefits plus 15 days salary. I had served one month notice also. They promised me to pay after some time since the financial condition of the company was not good at that time. After repeated telephonic reminder and subsequent letters they kept quiet. It is almost 2 years since then, and I came to know that this company continue to do such things with other employees also. What I can do now? Can I still get money back?

A. Yes, you can claim all the benefits, which the company has not paid you after your resignation. You can file a civil suit against the company and claim those dues. In case you are a “workman” within the definition of Industrial Disputes Act, you can file a petition under Section 33 (c) (ii) of the said Act and claim your benefits.

Q6. I am working with a government enterprises company since last 7 years on a contract basis. They renewing my contract on every year. Relation are good with my employer, but if they are not continuing my job in any case what I will do. Is there any chance to see them?

A. From your query it is not clear in which category of employment are you working, Whether you are in the “Workman” category or you are in the “Management” Cadre and whether you are employed on contract basis or otherwise. In case you are in the Management category, then the Company has every right to enter into an agreement with you on a contractual basis and continue your job till the time they want. In case you are working in the office staff then in case the company does not renew your contract then you can approach the Labour Court under the provisions of Industrial Disputes Act and seek appropriate remedy. You can ask for regularization under the Industrial Disputes Act if you are a workman as defined under the said Act.

Q7. Can any employer send his employee on forced leave for not to initiate disciplinary proceeding but to legally punish him?

A. The employer can not send an employee on forced leave without initiating any disciplinary proceedings against an employee. Only after necessary show cause or charge sheet has been issued and after holding disciplinary inquiry or proceedings, the employer can legally punish you. If the employee fails to receive the payment from the employer after having entered into full and final settlement of the account, the employee can file a civil suit for recovery of office dues. In case gratuity has not been paid then the employee can proceed under the provisions of Payment of Gratuity Act and then in case Provident Fund has not been released after the employee leaving, then he can proceed under the provisions of the Provident Fund Act.

Q8. What does an employees do if his employer does not make his full and final settlement of Account, once the employee leave or is forced to leave the service in the private sector. How soon and with what documents the employees should fight the case?

A. If the employee fails to receive the payment from the employer after having entered into full and final settlement of the account, the employee can file a civil suit for recovery of office dues. In case gratuity has not been paid then the employee can proceed under the provisions of Payment of Gratuity Act and then in case Provident Fund has not been released after the employee leaving, then he can proceed under the provisions of the Provident Fund Act

Q9. How to get my passport back from my previous employer?

A. It is not clear from your question, in what capacity the previous employer is holding the passport. However, it is advisable to send a letter in writing to the previous employer for return of passport. If he still does not return the same, you can lodge a criminal complaint with local police station.

Q10. What are my rights if a contract has no mention of salary breakups and the employers PF is included as part of the Gross Salary?

A. There is nothing illegal if there is no mention of salary breakup and employers PF included as part of the Gross Salary. The PF can be deducted as a Contribution of employee from the Gross Salary. In addition the employer has to contribute his share of PF subject to maximum privilege prescribed in Section 6 of Act.

Q11. My company is not relieving me. I have got a job elsewhere and want to quit the notice period of one month expired one week ago. What can/should I do?

A. If one month notice period has expired as prescribed in the contract of employment, intimate to your employer in writing that as notice period has already expired you will stop coming to their office from ______ (specific date) and also write about settling your accounts.

Q12. Kindly give the citation of the latest ruling given by Supreme Court wherein promotion has been declared as the fundamental right. The Article was published in the newspaper but no reference to the citation is available.

A. The citation and the ratio of the case you have asked for is given hereunder : Ajit Singh II v. State of Punjab, (1999) 7SCC 209 : 1999 SCC (L&S) 1239 “The word “employment ” being wider, there is no dispute that it takes within its fold, the aspect of promotions to posts above the stage of initial level of recruitment. Article 16(1) provides to every employee otherwise eligible for promotion or who comes within the zone of consideration, a fundamental right to be “considered” for promotion. Equal opportunity here means the right to be “considered ” for promotion. If a person satisfies the eligibility and zone criteria but is not considered for promotion, then there will be a clear infraction of his fundamental right to be “considered” for promotion , which is his personal right.” (para 22) “It is not possible to accept the view expressed in Ashok Kumar Gupta ,(1997) 5 SCC 201 and followed in Jagdish Lal, (1997) 6 SCC 538 and other cases, if it is intended to lay down that the right guaranteed to employees for being “considered” for promotion according to relevant rules or recruitment by promotion (i.e. whether on the basis of seniority or merit) is only a statutory right and not a fundamental right.” (Para27)

Q13. Today if I get a job and leave then they will crib about it and would refuse to pay my severeance benefits, which to me is nothing unreasonable but the cost of closing down the office and leaving people to look out for a job and unsetting. In the current circumstances, badly hit as I am, how can I safeguard my interests and make sure that I do not loose my benefits if I have to leave early.

A. You have not disclosed about your term and condition of Employment. Anyhow if the company terminates your services and they have to pay the severeance benefit as the contract. If as per the terms and conditions of your contract or service if no severeance amount or benefit is payable on resignation then you can demand the same from the company if you resign from the service. However if the company has paid the severeance benefits to other employees who have resigned then in that case if you file a case in the court of law on the ground that other person or employees have been paid the severeance benefit after they have resigned and you are accordingly entitled then you must get this severeance benefit. It is advised that persons who have resigned and have been paid severeance benefits you can collect the documents from them to show that severeance benefits were paid to the employees who have resigned from the company .

Q14. I wish to know the consequences of breach of employment bond given by an employees: On the employee himself, On the company that employs him subsequently. If the bond states that the employees can be used for criminal breach of trust on breach of the bond, how enforceable is this clause?

A. As regard the breach of the employment bond given by an employee in this regard it is advised that if an employee has signed a bond after he get specialized training from the company then a civil case can be filed against him for recovery of the amount mentioned in the bond if there is any breach. As regard the company that employs him subsequently, there is no liability of the company, which employs him subsequently. Breach of bond is not criminal breach of trust it is of civil consequences and that also have to be proved in the Court of Law. In no manner it can be termed as criminal breach of trust.

Q15. A Writ Petition was duly filed and was admitted by Honorable High Court in Oct. 1994 against wrong and illegal dismissal orders of State Bank of India and for my reinstatement too. But nothing has been done so far inspite of my various request and reminders. In this regards, what immediate step I should take to get maintenance allowances or nurse my family smoothly as well as to meet highly legal expenses till disposal of the said writ?

A. When a writ petition is filed against the illegal dismissal on termination of service legally it is not possible by any court to grant any maintenance allowance or legal expenses till disposal of the writ petition. There is no precedent in this regard nor any court pays the maintenance allowance. The only remedy available to you is to file an application for early hearing and get the matter decided as early as possible.

Q16. A civil appeal against recovery orders in lying pending in Honorable High Court. At present, neither there is any movable/immovable property in my name nor I am in position to pay the amount of recovery as ordered by Single Judge Bench or likely to be ordered in futures. Under these circumstances, what maximum severe action can be taken by this Court, in case, my appeal is not decided in my favour onwards? What are the point & steps/measures in defense in that position?

A. You have not disclosed in your query as to what order has been passed by the Appellate Court. Whether any stay has been granted by the Appellate Court or not. If any stay has been granted then what conditions. Normally when any appeal is admitted or put for hearing the Appellate Court always passes an order for payment of decretal amount with a condition that the decree holder can withdraw the amount on furnishing some security. If any order has been passed in this regard by the Appellate Court then you have to deposit the amount. If you don’t deposit the amount then normally the appeal is dismissed. If the decree passed is totally illegal then in that case you can tell the court that no amount is payable. And you also pray to the court that you are in very bad financial condition otherwise your appeal will be dismissed.
If you have any questions please post over here….

Regards,

Pinal Mehta

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