This article is written by Kalyani Gupta, a Master’s in Law student from Amity University, Noida. This article discusses the overtime work policies and laws in accordance with the Labour Law.
Overtime implies as the time spent working more than the normal or regular working hours which, in India, is supposed to be 8 – 9 hours per day and 48 – 50 hours per week, which depends upon the organization a person is employed with. If an individual works for longer than the normal hours of working, that person will be eligible to obtain and receive remuneration for the excess working hours, which will be twice the normal wage of that individual.
Several statutes in India regulate overtime and overtime payment laws. Also, various legal acts do provide for individually distinct periods of hours of working. Though, the working hours which are mentioned and prescribed under the Factories Act, is carried as a standard period of working hours. Section 51 of the Factories Act, 1948 states that employees are not intended to work for more than 48 hours in a one week, and according to section 59, employees are not intended to work for not more than 9 hours in a day. The time worked by an individual which is in excess of these 48 hours per week and 9 hours in a day will be considered as overtime work under the Act and will involve the employer to pay the workers twice the normal wage.
Provision under Labour Laws for Working Overtime
- Factories Act, 1948: Section 51 of the Factories Act, 1948 states that employees are not intended to work for more than 48 hours in a one week, and according to section 59, employees are not intended to work for not more than 9 hours in a day. The time worked by an individual which is more than 48 hours per week and 9 hours in a day will be considered as overtime work under the Act and will involve the employer to pay the workers twice the normal wage.
- Mines Act, 1952: Sections 28 to 30 of this Act states that no individual who is working in a mine is permitted to work for more than 10 hours per day, which is inclusive of overtime.
- Minimum Wages Act, 1948: Section 33 of the Act states that the overtime wages must be twice the individuals normal wage rate. This implies that the employer can take up to a total of 9 hours of work in 12 hours shift in a day. But the employer must pay double for an hour or a part of an hour of the authentic work in excess of 9 hours or more than 48 hours in a week. Section 14 specifies that any employee or worker whose minimum rate of wage is set according to the time periods, such as hour, days or a week, and if that individual works more than the normal number of hours, it is then deemed to be overtime work. If the number of hours that represent a normal working day surpasses the required limit, then the employer must pay him the overtime rate for every such hour or part of an hour in which he has worked.
- Beedi and Cigar Workers Act, 1966: Sections 17 and 18 of this Act are related to the working hours. It is stipulated that working hours inclusive of the overtime work, should not surpass 10 hours a day and 54 hours a week.
- Contract Labour (Regulation & Abolition) Act, 1970: Rule 79 of this Act states that it is compulsory for every contractor to retain and form a register of overtime work covering all information concerning the calculation of the overtime work, total number of hours of extra work done, the name of the worker etc.
- Building and Other Construction Workers (Regulation of Employment Service) Act, 1996: Sections 28 and 29 of this Act implies that workers who work overtime will be given overtime wages at a rate which is twice the existing wage rate.
- Working Journalist (Conditions of Service) and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1955: Rule 10 of the Act implies that a journalist who works during the day for more than 6 hours per day and more than 5 and a half hours at night shall be compensated with rest hours which will be equal to the hours that person has worked overtime.
- Plantation Labour Act, 1951: Section 19 of the Act states that where an adult worker works in any of the plantation during the day more than the number of hours that establish a normal working day or for more than 48 hours in a week, that person shall be permitted to twice the rate of ordinary wages for such overtime work. Providing that no such individual is allowed to work in a day for more than 9 hours and more than 54 hours a week.
Overtime Laws for Women and Children
The Factories Act, 1948 has restricted the working hours for women between 7:00 pm to 6:00 am, which can be eased by the Chief Inspector of those factories in some instances. If this kind of easing of specified hours of working surpasses the standard period of working hours, the employees will be entitled to receive compensation for that overtime work. Also, this respite is still very time sensitive, which means that women cannot be compelled to work between the time period of 10:00 pm to 05:00 am.
Section 75 of the same Act states that no child who is below 14 years of age can be hired or employed in any factory. A child who is above 14 years of age is eligible for employment in a factory, but cannot be permitted to work for more than 4 and half hours per day and cannot work between the time period of 10:00 pm and 6:00 am. Furthermore, a female child is not permitted to work in any of the factory, with the exception of between 8:00 am and 7:00 pm.
Work Hours for Young Workers
According to the Factories Act, 1948, A young individual is described as “child” or “adolescent” “(a person who has reached the age of 15 but has not reached the age of 18)”. This implies that a child whose working hours are limited to 4 and a half hours per day. It also specifies that the spread over should not surpass 5 hours. Though, the condition of the Act asserts that female child workers are forbidden from working between the time period of 7.00 p.m. to 8.00 am. According to the ‘Minimum Wages Act, 1948’, the number of hours of working for adolescents is determined by the medical expert as authorized by the government, which decides and chooses to contemplate adolescents as either adults or children. Nonetheless, the child should not be permitted to work for more than 4 and a half hours per day.
Workdays and Break Period
The Factories Act, 1948 states that the weekly holiday which falls on the first day of the week, which is either a Sunday or maybe any other specific day, as may be authorized in writing by the Chief Inspector of the Factories, is needed for a specific area.
Section 52 mentions for the replacement of any weekly holiday so as to meet the conditions of this section, employees may be permitted to work on the day of that weekly holiday. The proviso also states that compensatory holiday is permitted instead of a revealed weekly holiday.
The provisions of the Factories Act, 1948, a rest period of approximately half an hour should be provided in such a manner that no working time surpasses 5 and half hours. In accordance with the Minimum Wages Act, the working day of any adult worker will be assessed in such a manner that it shall not go beyond a time limit of 12 hours per day, inclusive of the interval of rest.
New Labor Laws for Employees Regarding Overtime
Recently in 2021 itself, The Ministry of Labour is planning to execute the new Labour Law in the following financial year. The process is ongoing to complete it. After this new law is executed, a series of better rules will begin in the country’s labour market. Alongside this, the government has also been trying to clear out the doubts that have surfaced due to the new labour laws.
According to a report the government may alter the existing time threshold of overtime under the new Labour Law and working for more than 15 minutes past the scheduled hours will be deemed as overtime. Companies will have to pay the employees for overtime hours of work.
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