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POSH (Prevention of Sexual Harassment) Policy

Last revision Last revision 22-01-2024
Formats FormatsWord and PDF
Size Size10 to 15 pages
4.5 - 9 votes
Fill out the template

Last revisionLast revision: 22-01-2024

FormatsAvailable formats: Word and PDF

SizeSize: 10 to 15 pages

Rating: 4.5 - 9 votes

Fill out the template

A POSH Policy is a document used to make awareness among the employees and other personnel of an organization about the POSH Act, 2013 ( The Sexual Harassment of Woman at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act, 2013). The purpose of this Policy is to provide a safe, secure and enabling environment, free from sexual harassment to every woman.

Having a POSH policy for a business is essential in making sure the employees are adhering to the POSH rules and to ensure that the employees are treated with dignity and respect by other employees of the organization.

Any organization with more than 10 employees shall have constituted an Internal Complaints Committee ("ICC") to deal with sexual harassment complaints at the workplace.

The POSH Policy is applicable to all employees of the organization. Further, the Policy endeavours to protect its women employees at any place visited by her which arises out of or during the course of her employment with the organization including transportation provided by the organization.

This Policy is a one-sided agreement drafted by the organization in accordance with the POSH Act without any negotiation with the employees and employees will have only the option to sign and acknowledge the same.

This policy can be used by any type of organization despite their size or type of business and can be used as a supplementary document to Employment Agreement, Employee Code of Conduct Policy, Non-Compete Agreement, Remote Work Policy, and Employee Privacy Policy.

How to use this document?

The policy covers the following important areas:

  • Sexual Harassment - this defines what actions will constitute a sexual offence under the POSH Act in the workplace.
  • Internal Complaints Committee ("ICC") - this covers the constitution of ICC, their roles and responsibilities to prevent sexual harassment at the workplace.
  • Lodging a Complaint - this covers how an aggrieved woman can file a complaint to the ICC, rules, and timelines to submit a complaint.
  • Conciliation - Once the aggrieved woman files the complaint to the ICC, the aggrieved woman can opt for a conciliation process to settle the matter with the connivance of the ICC.
  • Enquiry - this covers the enquiry proceedings, rules and timelines to be followed when a complaint is received by the ICC.
  • Interim Relief - During the pendency of the inquiry, the ICC may recommend to the employer to take necessary steps to give temporary relief to the aggrieved woman by transferring her or the respondent (a person against whom the allegations have been made) to a different workplace or granting leave for a period of three months or other appropriate reliefs as the employer may deem fit to meet the justice.
  • Compensation - the ICC have the right to determine compensation to be paid to the aggrieved woman by the respondent in accordance with the POSH Act.
  • Penal Consequences of Sexual Harassment - as per the POSH Act, the ICC is required to punish the offender in accordance with the gravity of the offence committed and in accordance with the company rules.
  • Malicious Allegations - in case if the complaint registered is malicious or false, the ICC will have the right to take appropriate actions against such employee, including termination of employment.
  • Confidentiality - Sexual harassment offences being a highly sensitive subject, all the parties involved shall keep all the information highly confidential and will be liable to the penal offence if someone violates the same.

Once the policy is drafted, it can be circulated to the employees through electronic medium or in physical copies. The organization may ask the employees to acknowledge this policy and send it back for record purposes. It is better to incorporate this document in employment agreements and get it signed at the time of joining the organization.

It is always better to make the policy accessible to all employees of the organization and update them whenever there are any changes made to this policy.

Applicable laws

The POSH Policy is covered under the POSH, Act of 2013 and rules thereunder. Some aggravated forms of sexual harassment is covered under the Indian Penal Code, 1860.

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