Gratuity - Check Eligibility, Gratuity Formula, Calculation Last Updated : 01 Jun 2020


Gratuity is a benefit which is payable under the Payment of Gratuity Act 1972. Gratuity is a sum of money paid by an employer to an employee for services rendered in the company. However, gratuity is paid only to employees who complete 5 or more years with the company. It can be understood as a form of tip paid by employer to the employee for services offered in the company. Since tips are a function of culture, various countries have various gratuity limits that are doled out by employers.

An employer may offer gratuity to his/her employees from his/her own pocket or may take a group gratuity plan with an insurance provider. Annual contributions are then paid by the employer to the insurance provider for this. The employee too can contribute to his/her gratuity amount. The gratuity paid by the insurance company is based on the clauses in the group insurance scheme.

Latest advancements in regard to Gratuity

One of the most important advancement in regard to gratuity for private sector employees is the fact that the ceiling has been raised to Rs.20 lakh from Rs.10 lakh for tax-free gratuity. The same was done for the central government employees right after the announcement and implementation of the 7th Central Pay Commission.

In light of the recent pandemic and virus outbreak across the nation, the Union Government has also proposed a number of security measure for the workforce. In one of the recent press conferences held by the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced that the government plans to offer the payment of gratuity after the completion of one year of service. This will be applicable to the fixed-term employees of a firm.

Few Significant Points about Gratuity

Following are some of the most prominent points about payment of gratuity by an employer to an employee.

  • An employee can receive a gratuity amount higher than Rs.10,00,000 from his/her employer, the exemption for tax in this case will be calculated as per the points listed above under taxation.
  • In the recent Interim Budget of 2019, interim finance minister, Mr. Piyush Goyal announced that the existing tax-free gratuity limit will be increased to Rs.30 lakh.
  • The employer has the right to reject payment of gratuity to an employee if he/she has been asked to leave his/her job owing to any misconduct.
  • In case of death of the employee, the nominee or heir of the employee is paid the gratuity amount. The taxation for this is calculated for the receiver under the head – income from other sources.

Gratuity Act, 1972

The payment of Gratuity Act was passed in the year 1972 and covers employees engaged in mines, factories, oil fields, plantations, companies, ports and other such establishments which have more than ten employees. The gratuity amount unlike provident fund is totally paid by the employer without any contribution from the employee.

Gratuity Eligibility

Following are the few instances when you will be eligible to receive gratuity.

  1. An employee should be eligible for superannuation
  2. An employee retires
  3. An employee resigns after working for 5 years with a single employer
  4. An employee passes away or suffers disability due to illness or accident

Gratuity Formula

Listed below are the components that go into calculation of gratuity amount. The amount is also dependent upon the number of years served in the company and the last drawn salary.

Gratuity = N*B*15/26

N = number of years of service in a company

B = last drawn basic salary plus DA

How to Calculate Gratuity

For example, if Amit is an engineer who has worked with SF Company for 20 years of service and had Rs.25,000 as his last drawn basic plus DA amount, then,

Gratuity Amount for Amit = 20*25,000*15/26 = Rs.2,88,461.54

However, an employer can choose to pay more gratuity to an employee (since it is a form of tip as mentioned in the beginning) but then the amount as restricted by the Gratuity Act cannot exceed more than Rs.10 lac. Anything above the amount Rs.10 lac is known as ex-gratia which is a voluntary contribution and not something compulsorily imposed by the law.

Also, for the number of months in the last year of employment, anything above 6 months is rounded off to the next number while anything below 6 months in the last year of employment is rounded off to the previous lower number. So, a job held for 6 years 7 months will fetch you gratuity amount for 7 years while that held for 6 years and 4 months will fetch you gratuity amount for 6 years.

Calculation of gratuity for the employees who are not covered under the Gratuity Act

When it comes to paying gratuity to an employee, an employer is not restricted by the law even if the organisation is not covered under the Gratuity Act. The gratuity amount which is payable to the employee is calculated on the basis of half month’s salary for each complete year of service. Salary, in this case, is calculated including basic pay, commission on sales, and dearness allowance.

The following formula is considered for the calculation of gratuity amount for employees who are not covered under the Gratuity Act:

Gratuity Amount = (15 * Last drawn salary amount * period of service) / 30


Mr. X is an employee of ABC Pvt. Ltd. which is not covered under the Gratuity Act. The last basic salary that he has drawn is Rs.50,000 per month. He has been working in the organisation for 10 years and 8 months. Thus, the gratuity amount for Mr. X will be as follows:

Gratuity Amount: (15 * 50,000 * 11) / 30 = Rs.2.75 lakh.

The period of service of an employee is taken as a whole year for the calculation. In case the number of months worked in the last year is less than 6 months, the previous number of completed years is considered. However, if the number of months completed in the last year of service is more than 6 months, the year is considered to be a full year for the purpose of calculation. In this case, Mr. A has worked for 10 years and 8 months. Thus, his working tenure has been considered as 11 years. If the service period had been 10 years and 4 months (or anything less than 6 months), the number of years of service would have been considered as 10 years only.

As per the rules recorded on the pensioner’s portal of the government, the amount of gratuity at the time of retirement is calculated as follows:

Gratuity Amount is equal to one-fourth of the last-drawn basic salary of an employee for each completed six-month period. The retirement gratuity amount which is payable is 16 times of the basic salary. However, it is subject to a cap of Rs.20 lakh.

Calculation of gratuity in case of death of an employee

In case of death of an employee, the gratuity benefits are calculated on the basis of the tenure of service of the employee. The amount is, however, subject to a maximum of Rs.20 lakh. The following table shows the rates at which the gratuity will be payable in case of death of an employee:

Tenure of service Amount payable towards gratuity
Less than a year 2 * basis salary
1 year or more but less than 5 years 6 * basic salary
5 years or more but less than 11 years 12 * basic salary
11 years or more but less than 20 years 20 * basic salary
20 years or more Half of the basic salary for each completed six-monthly period. However, it is subject to a maximum of 33 times of the basic salary.

Tax on Gratuity

The taxation process for gratuity depends upon the employee who is receiving the gratuity amount. Two standard cases arise for the calculation of tax on gratuity:

  1. Government Employee Receiving Gratuity Amount:

  2. In case any employee under the state government, central government or local authority receives gratuity amount than the amount is fully exempt from Income Tax.

  3. Any Other Salaried Individual Receiving Gratuity Amount from an Employer who is Covered by Payment of Gratuity Act:

  4. In case of gratuity received by any employee whose employer is covered under the Gratuity Act, the following amount is exempt from tax.

    • 15 days salary as per the last drawn salary of the individual

  5. Any Other Salaried Individual Receiving Gratuity Amount from an Employer who is not Covered by Payment of Gratuity Act:

  6. In such a case the least of the following three amounts is exempt from tax.

    • Rs.10,00,000
    • Gratuity actually received by employee
    • Half month's salary for every year of service that the employee has completed with the employer

Tax Exemptions on Gratuity

Based on the policy changes made during the 2016 budget, here’s what gratuity laws looks like:

  • According to Article 10 (10) in the Income Tax Act, any gratuity received by government employees, apart from statutory corporations, is fully exempt of tax.
  • According to Article 10 (10) ii of the Income Tax Act, death and retirement gratuity receivable by an employee covered under Gratuity Act 1972 is the least amount of the following that is exempt from tax:
    • (*15/26) X Last drawn salary** X completed year of service or part thereof in excess of 6 months.
    • Rs.10 lakhs.
    • Gratuity amount that is actually received.

* 7 days in case an individual is an employee of a seasonal establishment.

** Salary amounts to the total salary received by an employee including Dearness Allowance and excluding any other benefits like bonus, HRA, commission, and any other such perquisites.

  • According to Article 10 (10) iii of the Income Tax Act, exemption for gratuity amount received by individuals who are not covered under Gratuity Act of 1974 are as follows:
    • Half month’s Average Salary* X Completed years of service
    • Rs. 10,00,000 3. Gratuity actually received.

*Average salary = Average Salary of last 10 months immediately preceding the month of retirement ** Salary = Basic Pay + Dearness Allowance (to the extent it forms part of retirement benefits)+ turnover based commission

Gratuity Rules

Forfeiture of Gratuity

According to the Payment of Gratuity Act of 1972, an employer holds the right to forfeit their gratuity payment, either wholly or partially despite the employee having completed 5 and more years of service in a company. The only situation where this works is when the employee has been terminated due to disorderly conduct wherein, he/she tries to physically harm individuals during his/her employment.

Timeline for Gratuity payment

There are three steps involved regarding gratuity payment. These include:

  • Initiation: An individual or a person authorised must send in an application to an employer regarding the gratuity he/she is owed by a company.
  • Acknowledgement and calculation: As soon as the application is received, the company which owes gratuity will calculate the amount and also provides a notice of the same to the individual and the controlling authority with the amount specified.
  • Disbursal: The employer, having sent the acknowledgement, has a time period of 30 days to pay the gratuity amount to the individual.

FAQs about Gratuity

  1. If I resign from a company after 4.5 years of service, am I eligible for gratuity?

    No, you have to serve at least 5 years in a company to get gratuity payment. A Madras High Court ruling held that you can avail gratuity if you have completed 240 days of service in the fifth year. It is best to check with the HR of your company about this. However, if someone dies while in service, the gratuity amount will be paid to their legal heir even if they have not completed 5 years of service. In addition, the amount received by a nominee/heir will not be taxed.

  2. I am a contract employee in a company. Will I get gratuity if I resign or retire after 5 years?

    If you are on the company rolls and are considered an employee of the company, then you will receive gratuity. However, if you are under a contractor that is separate from the company then the gratuity should come from the contractor and not the company.

  3. What kind of employees does the Gratuity Act, 1972 cover?

    Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972, applies to employees of factories, mines, oilfields, plantations, ports, railway companies, shops or other establishments related to them. All kinds of government jobs have also been included under the purview of this act. It is applicable in all states of India except Jammu and Kashmir.

  4. Is there any difference in calculation of gratuity for employees who are not covered under the Gratuity Act?

    Even if you are not covered by the Gratuity Act, your employer may pay you gratuity. The calculation for this is: Gratuity = Average salary (basic + DA) * ½ * Number of service years. In this case, the service years are not rounded off to the next number. So if you have a service of 12 years and 10 months, you get gratuity for 12 years and not 13 years.

  5. Is there a cap to the amount I can receive as gratuity?

    Yes. A company cannot pay you more than Rs. 10 lakh as gratuity, irrespective of the number of years you have completed. This limit is also applicable to gratuity you can receive from different employers during your lifetime. If your company wishes to pay you more money, they can title it under ex-gratia or bonus.

  6. How do I nominate someone to receive my gratuity in case of my death?

    To nominate one or more heirs for your gratuity amount, you need to fill in Form F when joining a company.

  7. How many days will it take for the employer to remit the gratuity amount?

    Usually, gratuity is released along with or just before/after your full and final settlement is done. The government mandates employers to pay the amount within 30 days. If there is any delay in payment, the employer has to pay a simple interest on the amount from the due date until the date when payment is made.

News About Gratuity

  • Insufficient balance in your HDFC Savings Account could lead to penalty charges

    If you have a regular savings account with HDFC Bank, you will be required to maintain a certain minimum balance if you do not wish to attract any penalty. Customers having regular savings account in branches of HDFC Bank in urban and metro regions need to maintain Rs.10,000 as average monthly balance (AMB) to avoid penalty charges. This has been confirmed on the official website of the lender. For savings account held in branches of the lender in semi-urban areas, customers are required to maintain an AMB of Rs.5,000. Customers who fail to maintain AMB below Rs.10,000 but above or equal to Rs.7,500 in metro and urban areas will need to pay a penalty of Rs.150 while for AMB in the range between Rs.5,000 and Rs.7,500, the penalty charged will be Rs.300. Customers hose AMB is greater than equal to Rs.2,500 and below Rs.5,000 will be charged a penalty of Rs.450 in metro & urban areas and Rs.150 in semi-urban areas. A penalty ranging between Rs.150 and Rs.600 is charged by HDFC Bank on failure to maintain minimum balance in regular savings accounts.

    15 November 2019

  • Tax-free gratuity limit hiked to Rs.30 lakh: Budget 2019

    The interim budget for 2019 was announced on 1 February 2019 by the interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal. In the budget speech, Goyal announced that the gratuity limit will be hiked to Rs.30 lakh from Rs.20 lakh. Last year, in the month of March, the government had increased the limit for tax-free gratuity to Rs.20 lakh in the private sectors. Earlier, this limit was Rs.10 lakh.

    After the implementation of the 7th Central Pay Commission, the upper limit for central government employees was raised to Rs.20 lakh from Rs.10 lakh. The employees who have completed a tenure of at least 5 years in an organisation will be eligible for the benefits under the Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972. However, the organisation will be required to have a workforce of at least 10 employees or more to be eligible for the benefits.

    15 February 2019

  • E-Way Bill System Becomes Compulsory For Inter-State Transfer of Goods

    The e-way bill system has been made compulsory by the Indian government from the 1st of April, 2018, for the inter-state transfer of goods. The system falls under ambit of the Goods and Services Tax which was implemented on the 1st of July, 2017. This bill is essentially a document that must be carried by any individual who is in charge of conveyance of products from one state to another. The bill can be generated online from the portal, and also through SMS, Android app, Bulk Upload Tool, etc. The reason for the implementation of the system is that taxpayers must upload all the information regarding every transaction they undertake to a common portal online, and once they upload the details, the portal will automatically generate a bill that will help in verification by stakeholders.

    4 April 2018

  • Parliament Passes the Gratuity Amendment Bill

    In order to raise the tax free gratuity limit to Rs.20 lakh, the Parliament finally passed the Gratuity Amendment Bill of 2017, last week. By making use of an executive order, the Indian Government is expected to restore the retirement benefit stratagem as well.

    15 March 2018 marked the day when Rajya Sabha came through with the Amendment bill, which was shortly followed by approval from the Lok Sabha. Additionally, the period of maternity leave is also expected to undergo a breakthrough, without imposing complete law amendment.

    Prime Minister, Narendra Modi stated that this bill is significantly pro people and will thereby end up reaping benefits for more than lakhs of Indian citizens.

    23 March 2018

  • ICDS and GST Talks to Be Held By City ICAI

    The Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) from the city of Bhubaneswar recently put together a summit on ‘’The Implication of ICDS and GST on Preparation of Final Accounts’’.

    A detailed discussion on ICDS and its effect on auditor’s perspective and the importance of GST in the same regard. With regards to the preparation of final accounts, a proposal in detail was submitted that covered all aspects of GST and ICDS coupled with their implications on the very matter.

    More than 200 members are believed to have attended the session.

    21 March 2018

  • GST Council approves rollout of e-way bill from April

    The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council has extended the present system of return-filing by three months and thus businesses will continue to file summary sales return GSTR-3B till June. After the council meeting, the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley briefed to the media that the e-way bill or electronic way bill for inter-state movement of goods will be put into action from 1 April 2018. Whereas, the e-way bill for intra-state movement of goods will be rolled out in phases beginning 15th April and would cover all the States by 1st June.

    The Council has now revised and made major improvements in the rules which are as follows:

      • The e-way bill will be generated after excluding the value of exempted goods from the value of the consignment.

      • Transporting goods by public transportation has been included as a mode of transport and thus the e-way bill generation for movement of goods by public conveyance will be the responsibility of the consignor or consignee.

      • Generation and carrying of e-way bill has been exempted for railways under the condition that railways will not deliver the goods to the recipient without the production of e-way bill. However, invoice or delivery challan is to be carried by the railways.

      • The validity period of the e-way bill will be the time period taken by the recipient to inform his acceptance or rejection of the consignment or 72 hours, whichever is prior.

      • The registered job worker for a job-work can generate e-way bill in case of movement of goods.

      • The ministerial panel under Sushil Modi has been assigned the responsibility to delineate a single-page form for simpler and evasion-proof GST return.

    Tax exemptions have also been extended by six months for exporters, till September.

    17 March 2018

  • Mobile Counters Opened by Rajamahendravaram Municipal Corporation To Collect Tax

    Vajiyarama Raju, the Commissioner of the Rajamahendravaram Municipal Corporation, has revealed that the body has come up with mobile counters to collect taxes. The commissioner added that the programme was started as part of the reforms the body had in mind. He also said that 47th Division’s Siddartha Nagar High School now has a mobile counter where taxes will be collected. He urged the public to use this counter to make payments towards property tax, tax on vacant and empty lands, and water tax. He also said that rather than visiting the Corporation Office or e-Seva Centres, mobile counters should be used for the payment of tax.

    6 March 2018

  • Tally Gets Major Boost Thanks to GST

    Tally – the oldest accounting software in India, received a major boost thanks to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax. The engineering and product teams of the company, until October 2016, were establishing a POS (point of service) technology solution and eyed the retail side, with a projected 20 million shopkeepers. However, the project didn’t quite actualise as planned. But the GST regulations would mandate India’s SMEs to comply with the latest and more complex laws by filing their returns on the GST Network, and therefore Tally paid attention on refining Tally ERP – the company’s flagship accounting software.

    3 March 2018

  • Meagre budgetary allocation for children in Union Budget 2018

    Children constitute 39% of India’s population and the Union Budget has failed to recognise the need for good health and education for the children. Only 3.24% of resources have been allocated for children. This is a 0.08% drop from the previous budget. The resource allocation for prevention of alcoholism and drug abuse has been reduced by 27.54%. The share provided to the National Creche Scheme was cut by 35.8%.

    Children are affected by quite a few issues and the vulnerabilities have risen of late but the government seems to have neglected the need to provide solutions. According to a survey, out of the total population of 5-year-olds, 38% of them are stunted and 58% of them are anaemic. Child rights experts have stated that crimes against children have risen and so have the cases of juveniles.

    12 February 2018

  • Aadhaar Update Could Soon Attract 18% GST

    Updating your Aadhaar details, which now costs Rs.25, is expected to become more expensive as the UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India) aims to implement 18% GST on the services. Reports suggest that the tax will be applicable to only certain services and not all Aadhaar-related services. At the moment, the fee applicable for demographic updates such as changes in name, date of birth, email ID, mobile number, address and gender is just Rs.25, but it could rise to Rs.29.5 if the 18% tax is added to it.

    7 February 2018

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