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Covid-19: Govt announces additional benefits under EPFO, ESIC schemes

The Ministry of Labour and Employment on Sunday announced additional benefits for workers through social securities schemes run by the EPFO and the ESIC amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

These benefits include pension for dependents of insured persons with Employees' State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) who died due to COVID-19 and hike in maximum sum assured under the group insurance scheme Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme (EDLI), run by Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO), to Rs 7 lakh from Rs 6 lakh.

"The Ministry of Labour and Employment has announced additional benefits for workers through ESIC and EPFO schemes to address the fear and anxiety of workers about wellbeing of their family members due to increase in incidences of death due to COVID-19 pandemic," a ministry statement said.

Enhanced social security is sought to be provided to the workers without any additional cost to the employer, it added.

Currently, for the insured persons (IPs) under the ESIC, after death or disablement of the IP due to employment injury, a pension equivalent to 90 percent of average daily wage drawn by the worker is available to the spouse and widowed mother for life long and for children till they attain the age of 25 years.

For the female child, the benefit is available till her marriage.

To support the families of IPs under the ESIC scheme, it has been decided that, all dependent family members of IPs who have been registered in the online portal of the ESIC prior to their diagnosis of COVID disease and subsequent death due to the disease, will be entitled to receive the same benefits and in the same scale as received by the dependents of insured persons who die as a result of employment injury, subject to two conditions, it explained.

First condition is that the IP must have been registered on the ESIC online portal at least three months prior to the diagnosis of COVID disease resulting in death.

Secondly, the IP must have been employed for wages and contributions for at least 78 days should have been paid or payable in respect of deceased IP during a period of one year immediately preceding the diagnosis of COVID disease resulting in death.


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