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EPF appellate tribunal is not empowered to reduce the quantum of damages without assigning any reasons. - The Employees Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952

Delayed payment attracts damages and interest under sections 14- B and 8-Q of the Employees' Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952. The EPF Appellate Tribunal is not empowered to reduce the quantum of damages without assigning any reasons. Since the impugned order reducing the quantum of damages passed by the EPF Appellate Tribunal is without assigning any reason, it is set aside. Metter is remanded back to Appellate Tribunal for a fresher decision in accordance with law expeditiously. The EPF Authority while deciding imposition of damages for delayed remittance of EPF dues, it has to take into consideration frequency and number of defaults, period of delay, the amount of EPF dues, plea of power cut, financial problems, delay in realization of amounts paid by cheques, drafts etc. There is no limitation prescribed by the legislature for initiating action for recovery of damages from defaulters.

-Central Board of Trustees, Employees' Provident Fund Organisation vs. Goldline Pharmaceuticals Put. Ltd., Nagpur and Another. 2017 LLR 875 (Bom. HC.)


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