Section 3


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Civil liability Compensation Group or joint liability

This provision relates to compensation for injuries suffered during the course of employment, and exceptions to the employer’s liability.


The expression “arising out of” employment means that there must be a causal relationship between the accident and the employment. If the accident has occurred on account of the risk, which is an incident of employment, it has to be held that the accident has arisen out of the employment (see Oriental Insurance Co. Lid. v Nanguli Singh, 1995 LLJ HC ORS (298)).

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Section 3. Employer’s liability for compensation.—

(1) If personal injury is caused to a workman by accident arising out of and in the course of his employment, his employer shall be liable to pay compensation in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter:

Provided that the employer shall not be so liable —

(a) in respect of any injury which does not result in the total or partial disablement of the workman for a period exceeding three days;

(b) in respect of any injury, not resulting in death or permanent total disablement caused by an accident which is directly attributable to—

(i) the workman having been at the time thereof under the influence of drink or drugs, or

(ii) the wilful disobedience of the workman to an order expressly given, or to a rule expressly framed, for the purpose of securing the safety of workmen, or

(iii) the wilful removal or disregard by the workman of any safety guard or other device which he knew to have been provided for the purpose of securing the safety of workmen.

Law / 5 March 1923 / India / Workmen's Compensation Act, 1923

The Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923 (the “Act”) provides for compensation to be paid by employers to workmen for injuries suffered in the course of employment, or to the dependants of the workmen in case of death. The Act specifies the industries to which it applies, provides for compensation in case of disablement, injury or death, and occupational disease, and the process for claiming such compensation.                           The Workmen’s Compensation (Amendment) Bill, 2009, was introduced in the Lok Sabha in 2009.

It introduced several key changes –

1. Substituted the word “workman” with “employee” so that the law is applicable to all types of employees and is gender neutral.

2. Expanded the scope of the term ‘workman’.

3. The Bill created the post of Commissioner for Workmen’s Compensation. As per the amended Act, the Commissioner shall dispose of cases related to compensation within a period of three months from the date of reference.