This move is a positive for non-government employees as they will benefit from increased tax exemptions for leave encashment paid against accumulated leave balances over time.
According to finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, in her Budget speech, “The limit of Rs.3 lakh for tax exemption on leave encashment on retirement of non-government salaried employees was last fixed in the year 2002, when the highest basic pay in the government was Rs.30,000/- pm. In line with the increase in government salaries, I am proposing to increase this limit to Rs.25 lakh.”
Encashment of Leaves
If you work in the private sector, your leave encashment after retirement or resignation is taxable as “Income from Salary.” They can, however, claim an exemption under Section 10 (10AA)(ii) of the Income-tax Act.
Any payment received as a leave encashment at the time of retirement or otherwise upon leaving the work is exempt up to the least of the sums listed in Section 10 (10AA)(ii). The ceiling has now been increased to Rs.25 lakh from earlier Rs 3 lakh.
As per the Income tax website, “In case of non-Government employees (i.e., other than the Central or the State Government employees), leave salary exempt from tax under section 10(10AA) (ii) will be least of the following:
1. Period of earned leave in months (*) × Average monthly salary (**)
2. Average monthly salary (**) × 10 (i.e., 10 months’ average salary)
3. Maximum amount as specified by the Central Government i.e., Rs. 3,00,000 Different amounts (i.e., ceiling limits) are specified by the Government for different years.
4. Leave encashment actually received at the time of retirement.”