Monthly Archives: February 2017

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Do we have to pay for Foreign Worker’s Air Fare upon renewal of contract?

Re posted from HR Singapore

Dear HR Practitioners,

I would like to check if the employment contract end for one of our china worker, do we cancel the work permit and buy a ticket for he/she to return and reapply the work permit for he/she to start a new contract? Reason is employee wanted to return home for vacation, who should bear the flight tickets.
Denise

My reply:

If the employment contract is going to end and both the company and the staff is keen to renew the contract, company does not have to bear any air ticket costs. Further, it is not necessary to cancel the work permit for company can choose to renew the permit.

However, if the company is not intending to renew the contract, company is liable to pay for the repatriation costs (e.g. air ticket). For S Pass and Employment Pass Holders, if they give consent in writing, employers can have them bear the costs themselves.

See also:
Do we need to pay for Repatriation Costs?

Overtime Pay for employees who stay back for internal training

A manager once asked me, “Do we have to pay OT to employees who are scheduled for training after their official working hours?”
She is reluctant to pay OT as she cited that the Training is beneficial for their personal growth and companies should not be paying them OT.

The Employment Act is silent on whether one is entitled to Overtime Pay if he or she is scheduled for Training after his / her official working hours. However, basing on the FAQ in MOM (see here), MOM is suggesting that he or she should be paid an allowance at the hourly rate of pay, and such value should be more than any out-of-pocket expenses he or she had paid to attend the course – e.g. Food.

My suggestion will be if the employee is covered under Part IV of the Employment Act, he / she is to be paid Overtime since the company request them to stay back for training (key word, “scheduled”). This will prevent managers / supervisors from abusing the suggestion given by MOM, by unethically classifying everything as under training (e.g. On Job Training). If there is a complain by employee to MOM on such issue, company might be in trouble.

Lastly, they should not be forced to attend the training for such is outside of their contractual working hours.

Reference can be found under my Page “Sources”:
Hours of Work

Withdrawing Approved Leave

Your leave has been approved by your superior. Subsequently, he retracted his approval, citing manpower issues.

Is this legal?

Unfortunate for you, the Employment Act does not govern such issues, where it stated clearly that annual leave consumption is subject to the approval of the company.

A similar FAQ can be found via MOM:
MOM FAQ on Employee Rights

I am not married. Do I have Maternity Leave? My Child will be a Singaporean.

If you are not married, or whose marriage is not recognised by Singapore, you will be entitled to 12 weeks of Maternity Leave (8 weeks paid) if you are covered under the Employment Act, and of course, had worked for your employer at least 3 continuous months.

If you have more than 1 living children at the time of delivery, you will not be entitled to the 8 weeks of paid Maternity Leave.

You can also find a similar FAQ at:
https://hryam.wordpress.com/2016/05/31/childcare-leave-entitlements/

Reference can be found under my Page “Sources”:
Maternity Leave