IAS 19 Employee Benefits

IAS 19 Employee Benefits prescribes the accounting for all types of employee benefits except share-based payment, to which IFRS 2 Share-based Payment applies. Employee benefits are all forms of consideration given by an entity in exchange for service rendered by employees or for the termination of employment. IAS 19 Employee Benefits requires an entity to recognize:

  • A liability when an employee has provided service in exchange for employee benefits to be paid in the future; and
  • An expense when the entity consumes the economic benefit arising from the service provided by an employee in exchange for employee benefits.

Short-term employee benefits

(to be settled within 12 months, other than termination benefits)

These are recognised when the employee has rendered the service and are measured at the undiscounted amount of benefits expected to be paid in exchange for that service.

Post-employment benefits

(other than termination benefits and short-term employee benefits) that are payable after the completion of employment

Plans providing these benefits are classified as either defined contribution plans or defined benefit plans, depending on the economic substance of the plan as derived from its principal terms and conditions:

  • A defined contribution plan is a post-employment benefit plan under which an entity pays fixed contributions into a separate entity (a fund) and will have no legal or constructive obligation to pay further contributions if the fund does not hold sufficient assets to pay all employee benefits relating to employee service in the current and prior periods. Under IAS 19 Employee Benefits, when an employee has rendered service to an entity during a period, the entity recognizes the contribution payable to a defined contribution plan in exchange for that service as a liability (accrued expense) and as an expense, unless another Standard requires or permits the inclusion of the contribution in the cost of an asset.
  • A defined benefit plan is any post-employment benefit plan other than a defined contribution plan. Under IAS 19 Employee Benefits, an entity uses an actuarial technique (the projected unit credit method) to estimate the ultimate cost to the entity of the benefits that employees have earned in return for their service in the current and prior periods; discounts that benefit in order to determine the present value of the defined benefit obligation and the current service cost; deducts the fair value of any plan assets from the present value of the defined benefit obligation; determines the amount of the deficit or surplus; and determines the amount to be recognised in profit and loss and other comprehensive income in the current period. Those measurements are updated each period.

Other long-term benefits

These are all employee benefits other than short-term employee benefits, post-employment benefits and termination benefits. Measurement is similar to defined benefit plans.

Termination benefits

Termination benefits are employee benefits provided in exchange for the termination of an employee’s employment. An entity recognizes a liability and expense for termination benefits at the earlier of the following dates:

IAS 19 Employee Benefits is Copyright: IFRS Foundation Hire-to-Separation


IFRSInternational Financial Reporting Standards0IFRS
IAS19IAS 19 Employee Benefits1IAS19


IAS37IAS 37 Provisions, Contingent Liabilities & Contingent AssetsIAS37
IFRS02IFRS 2 Share-based PaymentIFRS02
IAS 19 Employee Benefits International Financial Reporting Standards 10019 1 IAS, IFRS, Standard, Financial, Accounting, Employee, Benefits IAS 19 prescribes the accounting for all types of employee benefits except share-based payment, to which IFRS 2 applies