Employee State Insurance (ESI) in India
Introduction to ESI
ESI, governed by the Employee State Insurance Act, 1948, is a social security scheme providing socio-economic protection to the Indian workforce and their dependents. It is funded by contributions from both employees and employers.
Benefits of Employee State Insurance (ESI)
Comprehensive Medical Care
- Full medical care for insured persons and their families, including medical facilities, hospitalization, and surgery.
- Extended coverage after retirement or in cases of permanent disability.
- Access to super specialty treatments for serious ailments.
- Cash benefits for certified sickness.
- Available for up to 91 days in two consecutive benefit periods.
- Enhanced benefits for long-term diseases.
- Paid leave for pregnancy, confinement, miscarriage, or related illness.
- Extended leave for certain complications.
- Includes prenatal and postnatal care, free of cost.
- Financial assistance for temporary incapacity due to employment injury.
- Monthly pension for permanent disability.
- Monthly pension for dependents in case of the insured person’s death due to employment injury.
- Lump sum payment for funeral expenses.
- Unemployment allowance under Rajiv Gandhi Shramik Kalyan Yojana.
- Access to vocational training for skill upgrading and re-employment.
- Confinement expenses in areas without ESIC facilities.
- Physical rehabilitation for employment injury-related disability.
- Old age medical care for retired or exited insured persons.
Eligibility for ESI
- Employee Salary Threshold: Applicable to employees earning up to ₹21,000 per month (₹25,000 for disabled persons).
- Type of Employer: Applicable to non-seasonal factories employing 10 or more persons.
- Employee Contribution: 0.75% of wages.
- Employer Contribution: 3.25% of the wages payable to employees.
- Payment Period: Payment to be made by the 15th of every month.
ESI Return Filing
Employers must file ESI returns on Monthly basis, including details of employee and employer contributions and workforce changes.
- Registration: Employers must register within 15 days of becoming eligible.
- Maintaining Records: Attendance, wages, and account books must be maintained.
- Compliance: Timely payment of contributions and adherence to rules is essential.
Employers can register online on the ESIC portal, with necessary documents like company registration, employee details, PAN, and bank account details.
Importance of ESI
ESI provides a safety net for employees and their families, ensuring legal compliance and economic stability during distress.
ESI is vital in safeguarding employee welfare in India. Employers have a legal and moral responsibility to comply with the ESI scheme and ensure its effective implementation.