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Types of Leaves in India

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What are the various types of leaves that an Indian employee can take? Apart from holidays and days off, employees in all businesses in India are entitled to a set number of leaves every year. All countries have their labour laws that entitle personnel to several kinds of leaves for multiple reasons. Under the Factories, Legislation, and State’s shop and establishment act, the quantity and type of leave one can take is determined by the industry, employer, and state.  Every state has its own leave entitlements and rules, which serve as the foundation for a company’s leave policy. Find out about privilege leaves, guidelines for casual leave, compensatory off, leave carried over, paid casual leave, and more in India in this article.

Why is it necessary to have a company leave policy?

Standard leave has policies and procedures that ensure that employees are aware of the benefits and that they remain engaged. It assists you in keeping things on paper and pre-defined in order to avoid last-minute conflicts or confusion.

Having such information on your website’s career page or employment portals can help you attract many candidates. It also makes people understand the organisation’s work-life balance, making them eager to work for the organisation.

Indian leave policy for employees 

Individual Indian states and governments choose the types of leave and attendance regulations. Companies must determine the number of leaves and guidelines while adhering to state regulations. Employees must obey a set of privilege leave and other policies offered by the company. Employees in India do not have a set leave policy.

Leave in The Factories Act Covered Establishments

 As all management staff, executives, supervisors, workers, and contract workers fall within the term “worker” under the Factories Act; they are entitled to leave. Below are the different types of leaves in India: 

Type of Leave

Privileged/ Earned




Quantum Per Year 

1 day off for every 20 days worked the previous year (for example, 300 days working = 15 days off).



As per ESI Act OR Maternity Benefits Act


On working 240 days in the first  previous year





To submit an application for leave 15 days in advance. Leave should not be used more than three times each year.




Carry Forward

Not more than 30 days




Other provisions

1 If an employee quits or is fired, their earned leave balance should be given to the employee within two days, and in the event of death, to the nominee.

2. Any worker who has applied for leave but has not been granted, will indefinitely have their leave carried forward.

3 Basic pay and DA can be used to determine the leave.

4. For each worker, a record must be kept. A manual process can be used, although it is recommended to use electronic methods for record-keeping. 

Also Read: The Ultimate Guide to Leave Management

Different types of leave in the company

The Factories Act of 1948 governs factories in India. Every state has enacted the Shops & Commercial Establishments Act for businesses other than factories (such as IT/service companies, shops, and so on). Companies offer a variety of leave options in addition to the necessary types.

1. Privilege Leave (PL)

What does privilege leave include? Paid leave is another name for it (PL). In India, almost every enterprise provides these types of leaves. The firm determines the quantity of PL (paid leave), which can be found in their leave policies.

Paid Leave is named for the fact that you ‘earn’ these days by working. Depending on the company and its HR policies, paid leaves can range from 20 to 22 per year. You are allowed to take a day off and enjoy it without losing income on this number of days. As a result, the term “paid leave” or “earned leave” was coined. To take advantage of the leave, employees need the manager’s approval.

Vacation Leave (VL), Privilege Leave (PL), Flexi Holiday, or Annual Leave are all terms used to describe this type of leave.

2. Sick Leave 

These are also known as Medical Leaves (ML) and are granted in the event of an illness or an accident. Sick leaves rule in India provides for this. Employers typically seek a medical certificate if the number of days of absence surpasses two or three days at a time, as these leaves are prone to misuse. 

If an employee is unable to attend work, they can call in sick. In most cases, an employee is only eligible for sick leave after a certain amount of time working for the company. The amount of sick days that can be taken varies by company, and no advance notice is required to take this form of leave.

If sick leave is being prolonged for an extended period of time, a medical certificate from a certified medical practitioner may be necessary to certify the illness.

3. Holidays

These are the company’s required vacation days. Festivals and other official holidays are among them. These are also known as public holidays, which all businesses must observe.

Independence Day, Holi, Dussehra, and any proclaimed day in commemoration of prominent people in India are only a few of the popular public holidays in India. In India, one of the forms of leaves available to employees is mandated vacations.

India is one of the countries having the most public holidays for its workers.

4. Marriage leave

Marriage leave is necessary for a few nations, such as Malta and Vietnam; however, it is not a legal entitlement in most countries, including India. The marriage-leave grant can last anything from one to fifteen days. Most employers, on the other hand, provide three days of marriage leave as standard.

Employees may get married and then return to work as a result of work pressure. Following the completion of the project, they may go on a honeymoon for a few weeks. To deal with such circumstances, a company can allow employees to take marital leave at any point during the first eight weeks of marriage before the grant expires.

Another regulation that is occasionally implemented is that only the employee’s first legal marriage is permitted. Consider the situation of Employee X, who married a few years ago while working for another company. X then divorced her husband and went to work for a new company. (Of course, it wasn’t at the same time, and for different reasons!) X has decided to tie the knot once more. So, since it’s her second time, she is not eligible for any marriage leave.

5. Bereavement Leave 

Bereavement leave is given when a family member dies, or a loved one passes away. This time-off is for attending last rites or funeral services, attending to personal concerns, and, most importantly, grieving.

Compassionate leave is another name for this type of leave. On the other hand, compassionate leave is available not only for the death of a loved one but also for the care of a dependent or ailing relative.

In India, offering this form of leave to employees is not required by law. Many progressive companies, on the other hand, provide bereavement leave ranging from two to twenty days.

6. Loss of Pay Leave

There are times when an employee’s leave balance is depleted, yet they still need time off due to an emergency. In such cases, employers permit them to take unpaid leave or Leave Without Pay (LWP). This absence is also known as LOP leave since it results in a Loss Of Pay (LOP) for the employee.

Some employers consider any absence taken in violation of a company’s leave policy to be LOP. An employee, for example, who goes on vacation without prior notice or clearance. Or, in the case of sick leave, an employee who fails to provide medical certificates as required by policy.

In the case of LOP leave, there is no concept of a leave balance. However, the employer must withhold payment for the number of days of LOP leave taken during the month during payroll processing.

7.  Paternity Leave

After a kid is delivered, expecting fathers are eligible for paternity leave. It is a leave of absence granted to the father to care for the infant and the mother. To accommodate LGBT and same-sex couples’ needs while avoiding discrimination, this form of leave is now referred to as a New Parent Leave.

Paternity Leave in India is currently not mandated by Indian labour law.

Many innovative companies, on the other hand, provide Paternity Leave to their employees. The amount of time off you are entitled to ranges from 2 days to 4 weeks, and it is totally dependent on your employer’s policy. If the firm approves this form of leave, it must be taken within a certain amount of time (for example, within eight weeks of the baby’s birth).

8.  Maternity leave 

Employers must give 26 weeks of paid leave to any woman who has worked for at least 80 days in the 12 months before the projected delivery date, according to the Maternity Benefit Act of 1961.

While the preceding three types of leaves (AL/CL/SL) are governed by state regulations, the federal government governs the Maternity Benefit Act.

Only the first two children are eligible for this leave. A total of 12 weeks of leave can be taken if a third kid is born. Miscarriage, adoption, surrogacy, and tubectomy all need mandatory leave under the Act.

9. Casual leave 

Aside from EL, some employers also offer a sort of leave known as Casual Leave. In contrast to EL, which is scheduled leaves, such leaves accommodate any urgent/unforeseen personal needs.

Do you have an urgent plumbing problem at home? Take a half or full day of CL to solve the challenge. Do you have to visit your child’s school for some admissions-related work? CL steps in to save the day.

In many places, providing this form of leave is required, but in others, it is not. In some states, such as Delhi, a combined CL and SL (sick leave) entitlement exist.

If CL is not required for your business, EL can be used instead. It streamlines the leave policy by reducing the number of leave categories. This is highly dependent on the manager’s approval.

10. Sabbatical Leave or Study Leave

An employee may be granted a study or sabbatical leave to refresh his knowledge and expertise to benefit the Institute when he returns.

Also Read: Standard Deduction for Salaried Individuals

11. Compensatory off or comp off

If an employee is required to work on a weekend or holiday due to the deliverables’ importance, they will be given a compensating day off on another workday.

Because these leaves are dependent on business requirements, they are granted on a case-by-case basis. There is a procedure for requesting and receiving compensatory time off.

After working on a non-working day, the employee must file a compensation claim. The immediate manager approves the request, which is subsequently transmitted to HR. The employee is given a comp-off leave once it has been approved.

Unlike many other types of leave, which expire at the end of the leave year, comp offs have a 4- to 8-week expiration duration. The employee must use this comp-off leave before it expires.

12. Leave of Quarantine

This form of leave is only provided to an employee if the employee’s family or household has an infectious condition that could endanger the health of others in the business.


 Employees of any government, non-government, or commercial organisation are entitled to various types of leave during their employment tenures in order to help them maintain a healthy work-life balance. Multiple studies have stressed the necessity of improving the balance between work and life balance in daily life for both companies and employees. It contributes to people’s health and happiness as well as the development of productive enterprises. 

Aside from the numerous leaves described above, commuting leave, leave not due, paternity leave, extraordinary leave, childcare leave, hospital leave, special disability leave, and child adoption leave are all available in particular sectors and professions. The duration of all of these sorts of leaves and the circumstances under which they are required are governed by business regulations. 

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