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Foreign workers in Taiwan can apply for COVID sick leave benefits

Foreign staff infected with COVID can apply for compensation for injury and sickness during quarantine

Foreign workers in Taiwan can apply for COVID sick leave benefits

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Foreign workers who contract COVID will receive 50% of their salary if they take sick leave, but can apply for labor insurance benefits.

Like all Taiwan residents, foreign employees who test positive for COVID must undergo seven days of home care and seven days of self-health management. Workers can take up to 30 days of sick leave, but they will only receive 50% of their salary.

If they take annual leave, they will receive their full salary but will be limited by the number of leave days they have accrued. The third option is to take personal leave, but they will not receive any pay in this case.

On Wednesday (May 18), the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) posted a notice on its 1955PH LINE account announcing that foreign workers who must take sick leave because they have contracted COVID and have entered home quarantine (effective April 8, 2022), a hospital, "government quarantine center," or enhanced quarantine hotel, can apply for injury or sickness benefits starting from the fourth day they take leave from work for the illness.

A representative from the WDA told Taiwan News that any workers with labor insurance can apply via the Bureau of Labor Insurance (BLI) office. The representative said workers become eligible for these benefits if they are unable to work because of their COVID infection for four or more days.

As to the amount of compensation they can receive for injury and sickness, the representative said payment is 50% of the insured worker's average monthly salary, divided by 30. For example, a worker who was diagnosed on May 2 and is subject to a 10-day quarantine, missed work as they underwent home care until May 11.

If their monthly salary is NT$45,800 (US$1,544), their occupational injury and illness benefit would be calculated by dividing NT$45,800 by 30, which equals NT$1,526, and multiplying by seven days (starting from the fourth day of quarantine), which amounts to NT$10,687.

However, on May 9, the mandatory quarantine for COVID cases was shortened to seven days and this second example is based on the current seven-day quarantine. If a worker was diagnosed on May 9, they must undergo quarantine until May 15.

If the monthly salary is the same, the NT$1,526 in daily insurance benefits would be multiplied by four days (starting from the fourth day of quarantine), resulting in NT$6,104 in total benefits. For more information on the application for labor insurance benefits for workers who test positive for COVID, visit the BLI website.

In addition, workers who have been diagnosed as having a permanent disability after contracting COVID can apply for permanent disability benefits. If a worker dies from COVID, their dependents can apply for survivor benefits.

There is a five-year deadline to apply for these benefits.

Foreign workers in Taiwan can apply for COVID sick leave benefits