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Employers of non-Malaysian transfer work permit holders can share COVID-19-related costs: MOM

Employers of non-Malaysian transfer work permit holders can share COVID-19-related costs: MOM

A construction worker seen at a construction site in Singapore on May 18, 2020. (File photo: Calvin Oh)

SINGAPORE: Current and subsequent employers of non-Malaysian work permit holders who are transferring employment can share the costs of their stay-home notice and related COVID-19 tests with immediate effect.

Such costs can be shared if the transfer takes place within 12 months from the completion of the stay-home notice, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced on Friday (Nov 12).

Other criteria are that the current employer must not receive more than what was paid for the stay-home notice and COVID-19 tests, and both employers must sign a written agreement that must be retained for one year.

MOM recommended that the current employer bear costs pro-rated to the worker's duration of employment within the 12-month period.

Employers can also determine their own apportionment of the costs by mutual agreement, it added.

MOM said the cost-sharing arrangement is applicable to employers who consent to the transfer of the work permit holders.

"As Malaysian work permit holders are able to change employers without the need to obtain employers' consent, such cost-sharing option would not be applicable to employers," said the ministry.

Instead, employers of Malaysian work permit holders may consider having contract terms such as a minimum employment period or notice period for termination, said MOM.

Such terms should be mutually agreed between both the employer and the worker, and "reasonable in duration", such as three to six months for the minimum employment period, it said.

If the worker breaches the employment terms, they will have to reimburse the employer the costs of stay-home notice and related COVID-19 tests, said MOM.

The reimbursement can be partial or full, depending on their length of service, added the ministry.

Work permits have a duration of up to two years and are for workers from approved source countries working in the construction, manufacturing, marine shipyard, process or services sector.

Source: CNA/dv(zl)

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