Date Posted: 11/04/2023 Posted By: Lily
An essential aspect of the employment contract between a domestic helper and an employer is the annual leave entitlement. Annual leave is a legal right and should be communicated in the employment contract, along with other benefits such as wages, salary payment schedules and overtime pay rate. This post will outline how annual leave is calculated for Hong Kong and Singapore domestic helpers.
It will also provide information on how to claim annual leave and what happens if the employment contract is terminated before the domestic helper has taken their annual leave.
Annual leave is a legal entitlement under Hong Kong's Employment Ordinance and Singapore's Employment Act. It is not paid leave but can be added to the statutory annual leave.
Domestic helpers in both countries are entitled to at least two weeks of annual leave each year.
As a domestic helper, you are entitled to 8 days of annual leave each year. The statutory minimum is calculated based on the number of working hours per week and weeks in a year. If you work for an entire year (52 weeks), your annual leave will be eight days or 40% of your total working hours.
However, this is just the minimum holiday required by law; nothing stops employers from giving more holidays if they wish! Push the boat out and reward her!
The employer calculates annual leave and communicates it to your helper. They should also give you at least one month's notice before they take their annual leave.
If you have any questions about how much annual leave your domestic helper is entitled to, don't hesitate to contact us. https://go.wa.link/helperfirst
Remember that domestic helpers are legally entitled to 10 days' annual leave under Singapore's Employment Act.
The law states that domestic helpers should be given at least one month's notice before they take their annual leave, and their employer must pay them for it in addition to their regular wages.
If a helper decides not to use all their statutory annual leave entitlement during a year, they can carry over up to two weeks' unused holiday time into the next calendar year (but no more than six months). However, suppose you have agreed with your helper on an earlier start or finish date than what's stated above, and she still wants some time off after this period. In that case, she may request unpaid leave instead of taking her paid holiday allowance - but keep in mind that this will reduce her total number of working days during that period!
Your domestic helper may remain in Hong Kong during her annual leave. She is free to return to her home country or another destination, but if she does so, she must still be able to produce a valid airline ticket for verification purposes. You may also request that your helper provide a signed confirmation letter from the airline showing that she has purchased an onward ticket for travel after taking the first leg of her journey (this will help you avoid any unnecessary expenses).
In Singapore, during her annual leave, your domestic helper is free to return to her home country or another destination. However, if she does so, she must still be able to produce a valid airline ticket for verification purposes.
Annual leave is a legal entitlement and should be communicated in the employment contract. Annual leave of at least one month per year, including public holidays, should be provided to domestic helpers. Employers and employees should agree on how much annual leave will be taken each year.
Employers must give domestic helpers at least one month's notice before they take their annual leave so that employers can arrange for replacements or cover their duties during this period (if required).
Domestic helpers should be given at least one month's notice before taking annual leave.
The same applies to changes to a previously agreed annual leave date.
The employer can ask for a shorter notice period, but this must be reasonable and agreed upon by both parties. Suppose the domestic helper does not get a shorter notice period or an agreement. In that case, she may still take her annual leave even without having given sufficient notice (i.e., if the employer fails to provide it).
If you want to know more about what constitutes "reasonable", here is an explanation from the Labour Department: "Reasonable" means what would be considered reasonable in all circumstances having regard to all relevant factors, including nature of employment, length of service; frequency and pattern of absences taken previously by employee; reasonableness under particular circumstances (e.g., illness).
Annual leave is a legal entitlement
Annual leave should be communicated in the employment contract
Domestic helpers should be given at least one month's notice before they take their annual leave
Ending a Helper's contract before annual leave, The employer is not allowed to terminate the contract of a domestic helper until she has taken her annual leave. The employer should give at least one month's notice before terminating the contract. If there are reasonable grounds for termination, such as misconduct or poor performance, the employer must still let the helper take all her annual leave first.
At HelperFirst, we always try to encourage a welfare-based approach to the employment of Domestic Helpers. We believe that the employer-helper relationship should be a mutually beneficial one and that both parties should benefit from the employment arrangement. As such, we strongly encourage employers to treat their helpers fairly and respectfully.
We welcome applications from Employers who share these aims.
We hope you found this article helpful. If you have any questions about annual leave for domestic helpers, don't hesitate to contact us! https://go.wa.link/helperfirst