Taiwan labor ministry explains newly passed Labor Standards Act amendment

The article provides an easy to understand account of the new labor regulations


(CNA photo)

Ministry of Labor (MOL) on Wednesday explained the newly passed amendment to the Labor Standards Act, including weekly days off, overtime payment and annual leave.

The Labor Standards Act amendment bill was passed in Taiwan’s legislature on Tuesday, providing a legal foundation for the new system of “one official holiday and one rest day” per week for private sector workers, the MOL said. The amendment also provides a legal base for a unified national holiday system, as well as for overtime payment, the MOL said, adding that the amendment will benefit 8.57 million private sector workers in Taiwan.

The amendment to Article 36 stipulates that there are two days off for every seven days, one of which is an “official holiday” and the other is a “rest day.” The “official holiday” is a mandatory holiday, but the “rest day” means workers who need more income can opt to work on this day if the company offers them to work.

The amendment provides higher overtime pay, stipulating that employees will be paid an hourly wage of 2.34 times of the regular hourly wage if they work on a “rest day” for within two hours, and will be paid an hourly wage of 2.67 times from the third hour on. Working for more than two hours but less than four hours on a “rest day” will be calculated as working for four hours, working for between four and eight hours will be regarded as working for eight hours, and working for between 8 hours and 12 hours will be regarded as working for 12 hours, according to the new regulations.

The monthly overtime, including overtime on rest days, cannot exceed 46 hours, and total work hours in one day cannot exceed 12 hours, the amendment read.

The amendment also provides for longer annual leave. A totally new clause says that workers who work at a same company for more than six months but less than one year are eligible to three days of annual leave, whereas in the past they got no annual leave.

Besides, the amendment also stipulates that workers with seniority over two years but less than three years are eligible to 10 days of annual leaves instead of seven days in the past, and workers with seniority over three years but less than five years get 14 days of annual leave instead of 10 days they got in the past, workers with seniority over five years but less than 10 years get 15 days instead of 14 days in the past, and those who have been employed by a same company for more than 10 years get one additional day of annual leave every year until reaching the maximum 30 days, according to the new regulations.

The amendment also provides that employers have to voluntarily notify workers of how many days of annual leave they still have for the year and pay them for the days of annul leave they didn't take.

The MOL estimated that 3.91 million workers have seniority less than five years.

Shift workers should get at least 11 hours of rest before working another shift, according to the new regulations.

Employers violating the payment and working hours regulations face a maximum fine of NT$1 million, the amendment read.