How to Register Your Startup in India: 5 Simple Steps for Registration

How to Register Your Startup in India: 5 Simple Steps for Registration

Many potential startup founders do not know what their first step should be while setting up a startup. Startup Registration is the first step a founder should take, post selecting, which entity needs to be set up. Startup registration is simple in India. We bring the five simple steps, every founder needs to follow, to register startups in India.

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Startup Registration in India

Five steps for Startup Registration are:

Step 1: Incorporation of the Startup

This is the first step in which the startup is required to incorporate itself as a private limited company or a partnership firm or a limited liability partnership. A startup founder, may incorporate his startup by approaching the Registrar of Companies, if he wants incorporate a private limited company or a LLP or by approaching the Registrar of firms, if he wants to incorporate a partnership firm.

Step 2: Registration with Start-up India

Under this stage, a startup is required to mandatorily register itself as a start-up on the start-up India website.

Step 3: DPIIT Recognition

After the creation of a profile on the Start-up India website, the start-up is required to obtain a certificate of recognition from the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).

Step 4: Recognition Application:

On the Recognition Application form (provided on the Start-up India website), a start-up is required to fill in the details such as the entity details, full address (office), authorized representative details, directors/partner details, information required, start-up activities and self-certification.

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Step 5: Submit Documents for Business Registration

The following documents are required for registering a startup in India.

  1. Certificate of Incorporation / Registration Certificate and PAN
  2. Email ID and Mobile number
  3. Company Details (Industry, Sector, Category, Regd. Office Address, etc)
  4. Directors/Partners Details (Name, Photo, Gender, Mobile No. Email ID, Full Address)
  5. Details of Authorised Representative (Name, Designation, Mobile No. Email ID)
  6. A Brief about business and products/services and notes on innovations
  7. Revenue model and Uniqueness of the Product
  8. Website
  9. Pitch Deck
  10. Video
  11. Declaration by a Startup for exemption under Section 56(2) (viib) of the Income Tax Act, 1961 on Letterhead.

Upon completion of the above steps, the startup is registered and is allotted a unique recognition number.

Miscellaneous Questions:

  1.  Is Funding required at the time of registration of business?

No, funding is not required at the time of registration of business. Many startups start as bootstrapped businesses i;e they self fund themselves. Investors also invest in registered startups and hence, one should not look for funding before startup incorporation.

      2     Is it essential to obtain copyrights and IPR Registration?

Government incentivises those startups that obtain copyright and IPR registration. Moreover, it is pertinent for startups to have their intellectual property protected, right from the incorporation stage. Even investors who come for startup funding prefer those startups who have already procured copyright and IPR registrations.

Also, read What are the legal compliances required for a Start-up?

Know About The Laws For Startups

Know About The Laws For Startups

Startups Accelerate The Innovative Spirit And Energize Societal-Economic Cohesion 

Business is the new ongoing, ever happening movement of the world. The onward march of economy and society depends on the continual churning and development of businesses. Businesses are energized by the vigour of innovations and entrepreneurship. And, a very significant aspect of modern businesses is the rise of start-ups. Well, a startup or start-up is technically defined as a company or project undertaken by an entrepreneur to seek, develop, and validate a scalable business model. The concept of startup has become more popular in recent times. It is widely believed that start-ups keep up the innovative spirit, they continually make the world move and help people find new meanings and dimensions of the running time. Startups heighten the interest in business and innovation, thus they create stronger integration of society and economy, leading to more universal dynamism and energy.  

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Laws That Govern The Startups 

In the modern times, almost all arenas of human activism and development are governed by certain written manuals and laws that form the overall outline for the proper functioning and interaction of various elements and stakeholders within that paradigm. Startups are no exception to this rule. Since startups aggregately reflect the aim and aspiration to rise high, they are subsumed by competition and ambition, so laws are all the more important in the context of startups as they are bound to involve friction and various forms of conflicts and disputes. 

 Besides, startups are businesses of a different type, so their laws vary at least to some extent from the routine business laws. Some startups are as under: 

The Formalisation Of Business Structure 
The understanding and applying proper business structure is needed because different business structures have different business applications while carrying out the business. There are various forms of business structure eg - proprietorship, partnership, limited liability partnership, and private limited company.

There are various legal details such as registration, legal status, taxation, member liability, number of members allowed, etc. Example:- legal status explains that the proprietorship and partnership do not have different legal entities and liability is on the promoter himself and in limited liability partnership, a private limited company separate legal entity is recognized and the promoters are not responsible personally for the liabilities.

The Issue Of Licensing In Startups 
Every business requires licenses as per the type of business carried out. Before initiating a startup the appropriate licensing issuing process must start to stay away from the legal battles at the inception. The licenses vary from business to business. Eg:- if an e-commerce company has to be started than VAT tax, service tax, registration, and professional taxes would be applied. The common licensing applied for most of the business under the law is the shop and establishment act, 1953.

Read about The Shop And Establishment Act - The Law That Governs Indian Businesses

The Laws Of  Taxation & Accounting
The government scheme of startup India launched has given many tax exemptions for startups. Different businesses need different tax policies to be applied according to the tax and business structure applied. For tax exemptions in a startup, the first 7 years' lifespan can be availed for tax benefits. The organization must be registered as the limited liability partnership company. The total turnover for the starting years must not be more than 25 crores annually.

 The Labour Laws
Every business firm has employees or labour for proper and efficient functioning on a daily basis. Many laws related to labours like minimum wages act, gratuity, Provident funds payment, paid holidays to workers, maternity benefits, harassment at workplace, payment of bonus, etc.

Even the government has provided an exemption from labour inspection for a startup if they apply all the major 9 labour laws of the country regularly for worker's benefit:
The Industrial Disputes Act, 1947
The Trade Unit Act, 1926
The Inter-State Migrant Workmen (Regulation of Employment and Service) Act, 1979
The Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972
The Employees’ Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952
The Employees’ State Insurance Act, 1948.
Building and Other Constructions Workers’ (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Act, 1996
The Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act, 1946
The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act, 1970

 Intellectual Property Rights 

Startups many times come up with unique and different ideas that can be protected in this world using certain laws. Our innovative product, improved process or procedure of making something in a better way can be counted as our innovative property rights.

The startup scheme for intellectual property rights is associated to the startup India program. This scheme would ensure the protection and commercialization of intellectual property and manage the trademark, copyright, and designs involved in the business startup. Under these guidelines for new startups, the government has reduced the patent fees by 80%. The panel would also have the duty to inform people in the market about the procedure of filing for patents or any other intellectual property.

You may also read Trademark Agreement - The Law To Preserve And Facilitate Creativity.

Laws Regarding Foreign Investments 
To encourage, foreign investment in the startup there are regulations for foreign venture capital investors (FVCI). Schedule 6 of the foreign exchange management act (FEMA), 2000, and the third amendment in this same act in 2016 has used for regulating investments.

Any investor from abroad may contribute to the 100% of the capital of the Indian startup engaged in any activity or business under Schedule 6 of Notification No. FEMA. The equity or debt instruments can be issued instead of foreign remittance in a firm.

 Winding Up The Business
When a business has started the laws must be known about the windup because no one knows when the worst would come. The winding-up process is a systematic process with 3 modes of winding-up which are fast track exit, court or tribunal route, and voluntary closure.

In the fast track exit, the company should not have any assets liabilities left and no past business must be entertained in the process of winding up and the company’s name can be removed afterward from the registrar of companies (ROC).

The Conclusion:

The laws that govern startups walk the tightrope between encouraging startups and protecting business ethics. And these laws strive to do that quite well, 

MSME Registration in India

MSME Registration in India

What is MSME Registration?

The Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Development Act allows MSMEs in the manufacturing and service sectors to register as MSMEs or SSIs. It is not compulsory to register as an MSME. But, you should still register as it provides several projects benefits such as tax benefits and protection against non-payment.

Who is eligible for MSME Registration? 

Only manufacturers, producers, and service providers must use the MSME tag and register under it. Any manufacturer or service provider who meets the eligibility requirements may use the MSMEs single window registration system to register. The revised eligibility requirements effective from July 1, 2020, are applicable for the three types of Enterprises. This includes Micro Enterprises with Investment up to Rs 1 crore and turnover up to Rs 5 crore, for Small Enterprises with Investment up to Rs 10 crore and turnover up to Rs 50 crore, for Medium Enterprises with investment up to Rs 50 crore and turnover up to Rs 250 crore. Any form of business entity may obtain Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) registration or Udyog Aadhaar registration. This includes Partnership Firms, Private Limited Companies, Public Limited Companies, Limited Liability Partnerships, Hindu Undivided Families, Self-Help Groups Societies, Co-operative Societies, Trust Others.

Is Registration Compulsory for MSMEs? 

Registration under the MSMED Act is not compulsory for MSMEs and Small Scale Industries (SSIs). But, it is always better to register, because a registered SSI or MSME gets a lot of benefits. The procedure for registering is completely online and is very simple. You require your entity’s name, Aadhaar number, bank account and PAN details. After you fill in your details, a reference number gets generated and you receive your certificate after verification of details.

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MSME Registration Certificate

Once you are registered and the process of verification is complete, you will obtain an MSME registration certificate. This certificate is proof that your entity or company is now registered as an MSME. This MSME/SSI registration certificate is valid for your entire lifetime. If you want to get your registration cancelled, you would need to write an application to the nearest Udyog Aadhaar Registration Centre and specify the business and the reasons behind cancelling the registration.

Can an Individual Register for an MSME Registration? 

Anyone who wants to start a micro, small, or medium business may use the Udyam Registration portal to fill out a self-declaration form with no need to upload any records, papers, certificates, or evidence. During MSME registration, business owners must provide correct personal information such as name, Aadhar, industry name, PAN, mobile number, and bank account details. Furthermore, for MSME registration, business owners are not expected to pay any fees. A permanent identification number, known as the Udyam Registration Number, will be given to the entity when it registers. On completion of the registration process, an e-certificate, also known as the Udhyam Registration certificate, will be issued. 

Udyog Aadhaar Memorandum - Online Verification process helps individuals figure whether the MSME’s are registered. With the help of the 12-digit UAM number, verification is possible through the link.

How do I check if a Company is MSME Registered? 

MSME database is available on the website of Udyam registration. You can search if an entity is MSME registered or not by typing the name and product/activity of the MSME. The search yields result by activity/products manufactured. You can then further filter the search to find out of a specific company is MSME registered or not.

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Difference between Udyog and MSME registration

Udyog Aadhar is a government registration mechanism that provides the company with a registration certificate and a unique number known as Udyog Aadhar number. This programme is aimed specifically at small and medium-sized businesses. Udyog Aadhar aims to provide companies with the most access to government programs possible. However, on the other hand, The MSMED Act promotes a variety of schemes, subsidies, and benefits to support MSMEs, which are the backbone of the Indian economy. The MSME registration process is required to reap the benefit from governmental schemes, state schemes, and public services, although it is not obligatory. Further, The Udyog Aadhaar Memorandum Scheme, which the central government introduced, allows entities with an Aadhaar number, which is mandatory for MSMEs, to take advantage of easily accessible loans, credit, and government subsidies.

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Why is MSME Registration Important? 

MSME Registration is important because: 

  • It identifies medium and small-scale industries and provides them with the assistance which they require to grow and develop. 

  • It provides tax benefits to MSMEs and SSI. 

  • It provides protection against non-payment of dues. 

  • Even individuals and sole proprietorships can obtain an MSME/SSI Registration and hence, it formalizes the business activities being carried at micro, medium and small scale.

The inception of this sector distinguishes medium enterprises and attempts to combine the three levels of these businesses, namely micro, small, and medium. This structure establishes a legislative consultative process at the national level, with a balanced representation of all stakeholders, especially the three types of businesses, and a broad range of advisory functions. Also, With the help of a policy structure and efficient steps taken by the government, the development of MSMEs in the Indian economy has seen tremendous growth and will continue to flourish at this rate of progress.

The Startup India Scheme

The Startup India Scheme

What is the Start-up India Scheme?

The start-up culture in India is booming. The recent news of Cred and Meesho becoming unicorns has spread a sense of positivity among the early-stage founders. The government of India, too, wants to capitalize on this high sentiment. To boost the further growth of start-ups, India's government started the Startup India Initiative on January 16, 2016. The start-up India initiative has three objectives: 

  • Create a uniform stage for the entire start-up ecosystem to come together. 

  • Facilitate and encourage entrepreneurship

  • Promoting entrepreneurship not only in metro cities but also in smaller regions of the country. 

Through this article, we shall explore the various aspects of the Start-up India scheme.


Who can Register in Start-Up India?

Eligibility for registering under the Start-up India Scheme depends upon the nature of the entity.  A Private Limited Company (Pvt. Ltd. Co.), a Partnership Firm under Section 59 of the Partnership Act, 1932, or a Limited Liability Partnership (LLPs) under the Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008 can register under the Start-Up India scheme if they fulfill the below listed criteria:-

  • Not more than ten years should have passed since the date of business registration.

  • The entity's annual turnover for any financial year since its registration should not be more than INR 100 crores. 

  • The ais and objectives of the entity should be innovation and development. It should promote employment generation and wealth creation. 

  • Enterprise is not formed by splitting up or reconstructing an already existing business. 

  • Start-ups devising innovative solutions in sectors such as social impact, waste management, water management, etc. 


What is Startup India Registration?

Start-up India Registration Scheme is a flagship initiative of the Indian government to build a robust ecosystem for nurturing innovation and Start-ups in the country. The start-up registration process on the Start-up India platform involves a simple registration. Registering a profile on the start-up India hub is a relatively simple process. We can start by clicking on the "Register" tab on the top right-hand corner on the home page of the start-up India scheme, which will be directed to the "mygov" platform for authentication where the user will be asked to fill in details such as the name, email address, etc. This will give the user an OTP or a one-time password for verification and a link to set a new password. The user can then sign in using the login credentials he just created. This will direct him to the Hub to select and create the profile of a stakeholder that best defines his role.

You will need the following documents to register on the Start-up India hub: 

  • Certificate of incorporation/registration. 

  • PAN

  • Company details

  • Details of directors/partners

  • Pitch deck

  • Revenue model

Which Registration is Best for a Start-Up?

The most favored business structures for a start-up are Private Limited organizations and Limited Liability Partnerships ( LLPs ). A Private Limited organization has more credibility. Investors prefer putting their money in private companies, and the government too favours the setting up of such corporate structures. Limited Liability Partnerships are the next most-favoured structure chosen by the start-up founders. An LLP is a distinct entity, and the partners' liability is limited. It has lesser compliances than a private company, and hence, those founders who do not want to burden themselves with legalities opt for an LLP structure.

What are the benefits of the Start-Up India Scheme?

The Startup India Scheme provides various advantages to the start-ups registered under it. In any case, to avail these advantages, a firm should be set up by the Department for Industrial Policy and Promotion ( DPIIT ) as a start-up. 

Start-ups are permitted to self-declare their compliance with specific labour laws and environmental laws. This benefit of self-declaration is available for five years since the date of inclusion on the scheme. Start-ups are permitted three-year tax exclusion, as well as the best-licensed innovation administrations and assets exclusively working to assist start-ups so that it protects their intellectual property.


Can a Foreign Company Register Under the Startup India Hub?

Any entity that has its office registered in India can enlist itself on the Startup Scheme.  However, the scheme does not facilitate the registration of foreign-incorporated companies. If a foreign company has a subsidiary in India, such a subsidiary can register under the Startup Scheme, given it fulfills all the relevant criteria. 

For how long is a company recognized as a start-up?

Any business entity that has completed ten years from the date of its registration and has exceeded the previous years' turnover of 100 crores shall stop being recognized as a start-up under the Startup India Scheme on completion of 10 years from the date of its registration.

How do I know my registration is complete?

Once the application is complete and the start-up gets recognized, the applicant will receive a system-generated certificate of recognition. The applicants will also be able to download this certificate from the Startup India portal

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Termination of Service, Layoffs and Retrenchments - Legal Viewpoint
Labour & Employment

Termination of Service, Layoffs and Retrenchments - Legal Viewpoint

This article contemplates and articulates the broad legalities and operational standpoint on Termination of employees from Service, Lay-off, and Retrenchment so as to allow the business management to make well-informed decisions weighing legalities against business objectives. Law provides broad-level directives and guidelines which companies shall have to oblige and comply with, without compromising the interests of the subject matter of the Act (welfare of workforce). Employment and Labour laws are a cumbersomely clumsy, yet comprehensive compendium of labour Acts applicable to deal with the law relating to employment and labour aspects. The common objective of all is to provide safeguard and protection to varied kinds of the workforce, be it an employee, workman, contract employee, etc., working in varied lines of business at different levels from daily wager to contract labour and all kinds of employees in between. Apparently, although different laws govern varied kinds of the workforce, these laws have effectively achieved the main objective of providing protection to a varied workforce. In a basic sense, this law governs the relationship between the employer-employee, covering the workforce in varied spectrums. 


The government has been working to enact uniform labour code to condense varied employment legislations at central and state levels to bring in comprehensive legislation to simplify compliances for employers and thereby achieve better workforce protection.


The definitions of lay-offs and retrenchment are specifically covered under the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. However, while determining the termination of service of employee it is pertinent to delve into the spectrum of Labour and Employment Acts and regulations which are prevalent in India in order to take statutorily compliant decisions taking into account the business objectives of the company.




The law relating to lay-offs and retrenchment is specifically expounded under Chapter VA (Entitled, Layoff and Retrenchment) and Chapter VB (Concerning, Special provisions relating to Lay-Off, Retrenchment, and Closure in Certain Establishment) of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947. These two chapters in ID Act elaborately delineates provisions relating to Lay-offs and Retrenchment.


It is imperative to understand the applicability of the Act, since the objective, purpose and applicability of every act are different, and so contemplating and analyzing the applicability of relevant law to the issue in hand is the key to arriving at a targeted solution. The ID Act is applicable to a certain class of workmen as defined under Section 2(s) of the Act. “Workman” means


"Any person (including an apprentice) employed in any industry to do any manual, unskilled, skilled, technical, operational, clerical or supervisory work for hire or reward, whether the terms of employment be express or implied, and for the purposes of any proceeding under this Act in relation to an industrial dispute, includes any such person who has been dismissed, discharged or retrenched in connection with, or as a consequence of, that dispute, or whose dismissal, discharge or retrenchment has led to that dispute”


Further, notably, there are certain exclusions to the definition of a workman, and according to the Act, Workman who is,

(i) in a managerial or administrative capacity; or


(ii) employed in a supervisory capacity, draws wages exceeding ten thousand rupees per mensem, or exercises, either by the nature of the duties attached to the office or by reason of the powers vested in him, functions mainly of a managerial nature, are express exclusions to the definition.


As such, this Act does not become applicable to the sizable spectrum of employees working in various organizations or companies either due to their nature of work or earning being at a higher scale.


This Act has provided lucid definition to the words “lay-offs” and “retrenchments” under Section 2(kkk) and Section 2(oo) of the Act and the extract thereof is below.


"Lay-Off (with its grammatical variations and cognate expressions) means the failure, refusal or inability of an employer on account of shortage of coal, power or raw materials or the accumulation of stocks or the breakdown of machinery [or natural calamity or for any other connected reason] to give employment to a workman whose name is borne on the muster rolls of his industrial establishment and who has not been retrenched."


Explanation: Every workman whose name is borne on the muster rolls of the industrial establishment and who presents himself for work at the establishment at the time appointed for the purpose during normal working hours on any day and is not given employment by the employer within two hours of his so presenting himself shall be deemed to have been laid-off for that day within the meaning of this clause:


Provided that if the workman, instead of being given employment at the commencement of any shift for any day is asked to present himself for the purpose during the second half of the shift for the day and is given employment then, he shall be deemed to have been laid- off only for one-half of that day 


Provided further that if he is not given any such employment even after so presenting himself, he shall not be deemed to have been laid-off for the second half of the shift for the day and shall be entitled to full basic wages and dearness allowance for that part of the day.


Retrenchment means the termination by the employer of the service of a workman for any reason whatsoever, otherwise than as a punishment inflicted by way of disciplinary action, but does not include-

(a) voluntary retirement of the workman; or


(b) retirement  of the workman on reaching the age of superannuation if the contract of employment between the employer and  the workman concerned contains a stipulation in that behalf; or


(c) termination of the service of the workman as a result of the non-renewal of the contract of employment between the employer and the workman concerned on its expiry or of such contract being terminated under a stipulation in that behalf contained therein; or


(d) termination of the service of a workman on the ground of continued ill-health"



The law relating to lay-off and retrenchment is effectively applicable for the workman in industrial establishment, as defined under the Act, and effectively, the scope and validity of these provisions to said workman are categorically restricted to certain persons employed in an industry subjected to exclusions as delineated under the definition of the workman. 


Bare reading of the Act clearly indicates that employees working in companies with salaries higher than the limit applicable for the workman, or who are in managerial or administrative capacity does not fall within the ambit of the scope of the said Act. Given the exclusions, the scope and applicability of the Industrial Disputes Act are limited to the workman as defined under the said Act.





The SE Act regulates the law relating to the regulation of employment and conditions of service of workers employed in shops and establishments for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto. This is a state enacted law and every state enacts its own Act. This Act has vast applicability as the words” commercial establishment” and “shops” have wide applicability covering businesses and organizations in varied sectors and industries.


As per the Act, the term Commercial Establishment means “an establishment which carries on any trade, business, profession or any work in connection with or incidental or ancillary to any such trade, business or profession or which is a clerical department of a factory or an industrial undertaking or which is a commercial or trading or banking or insurance establishment and includes an establishment under the management and control of a co-operative society, an establishment of a factory or an industrial undertaking which falls outside the scope of the Factories Act, 1948, (Central Act 63 of 1948), and such other establishment as the Government may, by notification declare to be a commercial establishment for the purposes of this Act but does not include a shop.”. The meaning of word Shops means “any premises where any trade or business is carried on or where services are rendered to customers and includes a shop run by a Co-operative Society, an office, a storeroom, godown, warehouse or workplace, whether in the same premises or otherwise, used in connection with such trade or business and such other establishments as the Government may, by notification, declare to be a shop for the purposes of this Act, but does not include a commercial establishment”. 


It is important to understand the sect of employees who are governed by the said Act, and the definition of Employee under the SE Act means “A person wholly or principally employed in, and in connection with, any establishment and includes an apprentice and any clerical or other staff of a factory or industrial establishment who fall outside the scope of the Factories Act, 1948; (Central Act, 63 of 1948).”, and the said definitions had certain stipulated exclusions. This definition widely encompasses employees in organized as well as unorganized sectors which relatively include higher income groups.


Contextually, understanding the exemptions to the Act is equally important to apply the relevant labour Act righteously to any given situation. Under the said Act, Section 79 deals with exemptions to the applicability of the Act, and the exemptions delineated under the Act are “employees in any establishment in a position of management and having control over the affairs of the establishment, whose average monthly wages exceed sixteen hundred rupees”. 


In “T. Prem Sagar vs The Standard Vacuum Oil Company Madras and Others”, the apex court had laid down certain tests to ascertain whether an employee is in a position of management and extract of the judgment is provided below. 


So, in order to determine whether a person is in a position of management or not, the factors to be considered are whether the person had the power to operate on the  Bank account, whether he could make payments to third parties and enter into agreements with them on behalf of the employer, whether he was entitled to represent the employer to the world at large in regard to the dealings of the employer with strangers, whether he had the authority to supervise the work of the clerks employed in the establishment, whether he had control and charge of the correspondence, whether he could make commitments on behalf of the employer, whether he could grant leave to the members of the staff and hold disciplinary proceedings against them and whether he had the power to appoint members of the staff or punish them. The salary drawn by an employee may have no significance and may not be material though it may be treated theoretically as a relevant factor.”


The apex court had emphasized the applicability of the tests laid out under the said judgment that they should be considered against the facts of the case, particularly taking into account the nature and scope of work of the employee in the broader perspective of his/her work functions and responsibilities. 


In accordance with provisions of the SE Act, in case any employee falls within the purview of the SE Act, the employer shall have to strictly comply with obligations of serving of notice period or alternatively pay wages in lieu thereof to employees in case employee is terminated of services of employment.   





Considering the limited construct of the word “Workman” under the Industrial Disputes Act, the applicability and enforceability of ID Act are limited (as aforementioned). Now the majority of Multinational Companies, Start-ups, Information Technology and IT-Enabled Services (ITES), and industrial establishments have the manpower of varied spectrum of employees, operating at different levels. No single Act may be applicable to all kinds of manpower, and so it is important to delve into various labour and employment Acts that are prevailing. 


Further, from the preceding analysis, it is evident that lay-off and retrenchment of workman would be dealt as per the provisions of the Industrial Disputes Act, and the Shops and Establishment Act stipulates provisions concerning termination of services of employees. However, the applicability of the Act would differ on a case-to-case basis depending on the nature of the job, income, nature of work, exemptions provided under the Act, etc., and therefore, application of relevant labour and employment Act is critical.


Nevertheless, it is important to note that the Shops and Establishment Act does not apply to the employees in any establishment in a position of management and having control over the affairs of the establishment, whose average monthly wages exceed sixteen hundred rupees. However, employees falling under the purview of the SE Act would be governed with regard to matters of Wages, Conditions for termination of services appeals, suspension, and terminal benefits, under Chapter VIII of the said Act.


Particularly, where Act is applicable to employees Section 47 of the Telangana Shops and Establishment Act stipulates conditions for terminating the services of an employee, payment of service compensation for termination, retirement, resignation, disablement, etc., and payment of subsistence allowance for the period of suspension. Pursuant to the said provision, “no employer shall, without a reasonable cause terminate the service of an employee who has been in his employment continuously for a period of not less than six months without giving such employee at least one month notice in writing or wages in lieu thereof and in respect of an employee who has been in his employment continuously for a period of not less than one year, a service compensation amounting to fifteen days average wages for each year of continuous employment”. While the said provision under the Act is illustrative, the above extract of the Section highlights that serving of notice period is mandatory for termination, retirement, resignation, disablement etc.,. Therefore, the companies will have to consider the mandatory notice period and service compensation guidelines illustrated under the said provision.


It is imperative to also take into account that evidently, hordes of the workforce falls to the exemptions of the Industrial Disputes Act and the Shops and Establishment Act, 1988, as a result of an employee being in the position of management or extensive salary packages, etc., In such a scenario, the governing document will be the Employment Agreement and applicable company policies, as the may be agreed between employer and employee. 





The law prescribes the compliance framework and guidelines for companies to adhere to and comply with. However, companies may set-up pragmatic and workable workforce management and operational framework keeping in compliance with the applicable legal framework. In the event of any doubt, apropos the minimum compliance standards and framework, it is prudent to delve into the Acts and legal precedents before taking any decision. 


Ideally, the Employment Agreement should strike a balance between the applicable legal framework and interests of the company


The employment agreement is an important document, as it legally binds and governs the relationship between employer and employee. So, if the employment agreement had legally enforceable provisions in line with applicable laws, then the employer's decisions in regard to termination of an employee from service will be governed by the provisions of this Employment Agreement.   





In the wake of the outbreak of the novel COVID-19 pandemic and declaration of WHO that it is global health pandemic, the governments across global have taken unprecedented measures and many countries including India have locked down their nations restricting trade and commerce. Indisputability, lockdown measures although it helped nations to minimize the damage or loss of lives to a greater effect, yet this pandemic leads to the onset of economic crisis and market meltdown creating an adverse ripple effect across the global economies. The restrictions imposed by governments resulted in impacting the businesses in all areas ranging from exports/imports, transport, logistics, productivity, investment, etc.,. In other words, the market is in standstill mode with uncertainties leering from all corners of the world. With unpredicted and unprecedented meltdown, it is becoming difficult to ascertain the future. 


The companies started experiencing less revenues and cash crunches due to steep plunge in the business operations, and virtually the businesses are preparing for a market meltdown by taking expeditious remedial steps. The major cost for any company is Human Resources and second, technological advancement. With clampdown of global operations, projects ramp down is underway and eventually, the companies would enter into cost-cutting mode and may result in laying-off and retrenchment of an employee in order to sustain the crisis.


In case companies are taking steps of lay-offs, retrenchment, and termination of services, then it would be prudent of Companies to follow legalities and be compliant so as to avoid the influx of litigation that may arise as a result of illegal termination of employment. Simple measures will mitigate future litigation expenses. 





Employer-employee or Employer-workman relationship is regulated by various labour and employment laws. However, in the context of lay-offs, retrenchment, and termination of services of an employee, predominantly, two Acts, namely the Industrial disputes Act and the state relevant Shops and Establishment Act governs and stipulates the law and procedures pertaining thereto. The ID Act governs the relationship between workman-employer and the SE Act of employee-employer. However, there is a class of employees who do not fall within the ambit of both acts due to depending facts such as remuneration, type of employment, nature of work, etc. Therefore, there is no straight forward formula for determining the applicability of provisions and so it is important to delve into applicable law and precedents so as to get a legal solution. 


Companies as a practice enter into an employment agreement and bind their employees to comply with various company policies (such as leave policy, maternity policy, etc.). However, execution of employment agreement does not absolve the obligations of the company to comply with applicable Act and regulations, and it is imperative that employment agreement should be drafted and amended from time-to-time in strict compliance with applicable amending regulations. Employment Agreement which is not in line with applicable law may fall to the ground in the eyes of the law. From a high-level perspective, the employment agreement and company policies applicable to its employees play a vital role in streamlining the management of human resources, without compromising on legalities surrounding thereto. As such, companies should audit the human resources portfolio and accordingly implement an effective employment agreement that works both statutorily and organizationally.  This employment agreement will govern the procedure of lay-offs, retrenchment, and/or termination of services, in case the ID Act and the SE Act are not applicable to particular class of workforce.




Corporate and Litigation Lawyer, Hyderabad


Disclaimer: The content of this article is solely the author’s personal analysis and interpretation. In case you wish to act upon the basis of the content of this article, please seek legal advice. The author shall not be responsible for any loss you may incur as a result of your actions relying upon this content. The content herein is the copyright of the author and is informational and shall not be used for commercial purposes other than for personal reading.

What To Do When Your Cheque Bounces?
Cheque Bounce

What To Do When Your Cheque Bounces?

Cheque Bounce is something that all of us would have faced in our lives. However, did you know that the person who had issued the cheque can go to prison for the same? The dishonor of a cheque drawn in furtherance of discharging, any debt or other liability owed by such drawer, is considered to be a criminal offense in India, punishable by imprisonment of up to 2 years, or with fine which may extend to twice the amount of the cheque, or with both. Hence, we have discussed below the legal provisions dealing with issues of cheque bounce.


What Does the Law Say?

As it stands, the ingredients required to constitute an offense relating to the dishonor of cheques have been mentioned within Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881, and have been reproduced below:


  1. the cheque should have been issued in discharge of a legally enforceable debt or liability
  2. the cheque should have been presented within the period of its validity
  3. the cheque should have been dishonored for want of funds in the account of the drawer
  4. the payee or holder of the cheque should have issued, within thirty days, a notice in writing to the drawer demanding the amount of cheque
  5. the drawer must have failed to make payment within fifteen days of receipt of the notice.


The intention of the drawer is not considered relevant while deciding his culpability under this Section. Furthermore, it is worth noting that Section 141 of the Negotiable Instruments Act also renders liable, companies, partnership firms, and other associations of individuals liable for the offense mentioned in Section 138. Typically, the persons in charge of the company (usually directors or partners, as the case may be) are held liable for punishment under the same. They may claim defense on the grounds that the offense was committed without their knowledge or that they had exercised all due diligence to prevent the commission of such offense. The Court trying a case under Section 138 may order for interim compensation not exceeding twenty percent of the amount of the cheque to the payee during the pendency of the case.



Filing a complaint for Cheque Bounce


If you have been presented with a cheque which gets dishonored, you can take the following steps:


  1. Send a notice to the drawer of the cheque.
  2. If the drawer of the cheque does not honor the cheque within 15 days of the receipt of the notice, then file a complaint before the prescribed Court.
  3. Submit documents such as oath letter, copy of the notice served along with the complaint.
  4. Preferably, approach a lawyer to contest your case.



What happens if your Cheque Bounces?

Once your cheque bounces, you will be served with a notice to make the payment within 15 days of such notice. If you fail to do so, a complaint against you may be filed. You will be summoned to the Court, and a court proceeding will commence. It is advisable to take legal help in such circumstances.





Cheque bounce offenses lead to imprisonment of up to 2 years along with fine. Furthermore, intention does not play a role in affixing liability. Hence, you may be held liable, despite not intending to dishonor the cheque. The severity and seriousness of this offense hence need to be understood. It is pertinent to take care that if this offense has been committed unintentionally, the amount promised should be paid within the stipulated time period of 15 days. Also, it is preferred that in the event of such a situation arising; one should approach a lawyer and take advice.