Posh Audit by POSH at Work

POSH Law may appear to be a Simple Law

However, as one looks deeper into it, there are several aspects that come out. Few of these are because:

  1. The provisions of Law need to be looked at in the context of letter & spirit and how they need to be applied to ensure safe workplaces and in this regard Indian Courts also pass several judgments from time to time
  2. The provisions of Law need to be looked at in light of these case laws and amendment to documents, process & practices may have to be made from Time to Time
  3. State & District bodies come out with Notifications & Orders from Time to Time
  4. A lot has been left by the Law on Employers to take care of (without being very prescriptive)
  5. This is also an evolving subject and there are several learnings along the way

What happens if POSH compliances are not in order?

In case of non-compliance, as penalty, POSH Act prescribes for fine up to INR 50,000 and cancellation of license to do business (in case of repetition)

However, courts have imposes higher penalties too in the past:

  1. CULCUTTA HIGH COURT – Not constituting an IC as well as not complying with other compliances. Penalty Rs. 1.68 crores
  2. MADHYA PRADESH HIGH COURT – Not constituting an IC and for the pain and suffering caused. Penalty Rs. 50 Lakhs + Rs. 50,000
  3. APPELLATE AUTHORITY – Arrears of salary (that were deducted from the Respondent’s pay) and for creating a hostile working environment. Penalty Rs. 30 Lakhs + Rs. 4,80,000 
POSH Audit Penalty
kind of action, POSH Audit

In some other cases, different kind of actions have been taken by Courts

These were not of the nature of monetary penalty but directly / indirectly led to monetary penalty / investment:

  1. GOA HIGH COURT – Improperly constituted IC & Action by Court was Reconstitution of the IC.
  2. MADHYA PRADESH HIGH COURT – External Member was not qualified & Action by Court was Reconstitution of IC and re-inquiry.
  3. APPELLATE AUTHORITY – Arrears of salary (that were deducted from the Respondent’s pay) and for creating a hostile working environment – Action by Court was Reconstitution of IC and re-inquiry.
  4. KARNATAKA HIGH COURT – IC did not follow procedure. IC members as well as the director also spoke to the media – Action by Court was IC was ordered to undergo training so as to avoid any further lapses.

In light of the above, we have been assisting our Clients in conducting 3 kinds of Audit

POSH Audit Documents

BASIC POSH AUDIT

(Documents & Compliances)

Full POSH Audit

FULL POSH AUDIT

(Documents, Compliances & Processes followed during inquiries)

Safe Workplace Audit

SAFE WORKPLACE AUDIT

(POSH, Gender, Culture & More)