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The Maternity Benefits Act, 1961


Maternity Leave and benefit To protect the dignity of Motherhood by providing complete & healthy care to women and her child when she is unable to perform her duty due to health condition.

Maternity Act 1961: Gives her the assurance that her rights will be looked after while she is at home to care for her child.


The Act extends to whole to India.

Every factory, mine or plantation (including those belonging to Government) and to every shop or establishment wherein 10 or more persons are employed on any day preceding 12 months.


Must work in the establishment for 80 days in 12 months before her date of Delivery Women earning less than 15,000 may be offered ESI scheme by her employer and will not be eligible for maternity benefit and but will receive the maternity benefit under ESI scheme.

The maximum period for which any woman shall be entitled to maternity benefit shall be 12 week of which shall exceed the date of her expected delivery.

An additional period of absence is permitted subject to maximum of one month for illness arising out of pregnancy.

  • Leave with average pay for six weeks before the delivery
  • Leave with average pay for six weeks after the delivery
  • An additional leave with pay up to one month if the woman shows proof of illness due to the pregnancy, delivery, miscarriage or premature birth
  • In case of miscarriage, six weeks leave with average pay from the date of miscarriage

Every employer of factory wherein women are employed shall prepare and maintain up to date a maternity benefit register in Form 10.


Every employer shall furnish to the Competent Authority by the 15th day of January each year a return in Form 11.


If any employer fails to pay any amount of maternity benefit to a woman entitled under the Act or discharges or dismisses such woman during or on account of her absence from work in accordance with the provisions of the Act and Failure to display the Abstract of Act.

Imprisonment may extend to one year or fine.