The EPFO has through a notification informed that employers failing to pay the EPF Deposits within the stipulated timelines will not be levied any penalty. This is in view of a recent Supreme Court judgment in Mcleod Russel India Ltd. Vs. RPFC (2014) 15 SCC 263 in which the court had held that in order to levy any penalty under Section 14B, the mens rea i.e. the intent of the employer has to be taken into account.
The EPFO opined that considering the difficulties faced by the employers due to the lockdown, the delays in making the deposits cannot be directly attributed to the employer and therefore they would be exempted from any penalty during the period of the lockdown.