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Relevant Laws and Regulations

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Labor Standards Law (LSL)

The LSA was promulgated in 1984 and has been amended many times. The LSA establishes the minimum requirements for the terms and conditions of employment that must be provided by an employer. The LSA applies to all types of employment relationships, unless the application of the LSA would create a genuine hardship for a business or the category of employment is specifically regulated. The BMAA, which protects employee rights after a merger and acquisition, supplements the LSA.

Act of Gender Equality in Employment (GEEA)

The Act of Gender Equality in Employment (GEEA) has been in effect since March 8, 2002 and was amended in January 2008, November 2008, January 2011, December 2013, February 2014, June 2014, December 2014, and May 2016. This law incorporates anti-sexual-discrimination regulations and other working conditions The GEEL prohibits sexual harassment in the workplace, contains measures to ensure gender equality in employment, and establishes requirements that employers must meet to create a beneficial environment for workers and their next generations.

The GEEA prohibits any unequal treatment in any aspect of employment, i.e. recruitment, screening, hiring, placement, assignment, evaluation, promotion, education, training, welfare, pay, retirement, discharge, severance, termination, etc., related to gender or sexual orientation. Further, an employer cannot terminate an employment at will if an employee marries or becomes pregnant, or requests leave for childbirth or childcare reasons.

The GEEA also includes measures on menstruation, maternity/post-childbirth, and paternity leave, family care, non-pay parental leave and its expiration, infant nursing time, etc. Employers hiring more than 100 employees must set up child care facilities or provide suitable child care measures, the cost of which will be subsidized by the competent authorities based on applicable regulations.

Prevention of sexual harassment is another key measure in the law. Companies are required to establish and display their prevention, correction and punishment rules. As the employer bears joint liability for a sexual harassment case, prevention and education should be taken seriously.

Particularly important is the employer's obligation to justify its non-discriminating position should an employee make claims of being discriminated or unfairly treated because of gender. Apart from fostering a non-discriminatory work environment, companies should also eliminate all sensitive wordings in documents that could potentially be interpreted as sexually discriminatory. Some local authorities have formally required companies to amend and re-file work rules to incorporate requirements under the Gender Equality in Employment Law. It is recommended that companies thoroughly review and if necessary amend their policies in accordance with GEEA to minimize any potential risks.

National Health Insurance Act (NHIA)

The National Health Insurance (NHI) program in Taiwan went into effect on March 1, 1995. The insurer of NHI is the Bureau of National Health Insurance, the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW), which administers the insurance plan. The NHI requires mandatory participation of all companies, and all local and foreign nationals. The program is designed to provide comprehensive health coverage for all residents. As such, foreigners legally employed in Taiwan join the insurance plan on their date of employment.

NHI Coverage

Under NHI, medical care benefits are provided for illness, injury and maternity in respect of hospitalization and outpatient care, as well as dental care and traditional Chinese medical care. In cases of major illnesses and injuries, child delivery, or receiving medical care in mountain regions and outlying islands, the insured person is exempted from payment, no matter if the payment is for hospitalization or outpatient expenses.

The NHI covers all employed people, including foreigners with an Alien Resident Certificate. The insured is classified into the following six categories:

Foreign nationals that have an ARC and have established a registered domicile in Taiwan for at least six months must enroll in the NHI. For those with a regular employer, enrollment in the NHI is compulsory.

Category 1:

Category 2:

Category 3:

Category 4:

Category 5:

Members of a household of low-income families as defined by the Social Support Law

Category 6:

The dependents of the insured in Categories 1 to 3 and 6 shall subscribe to or withdraw from NHI together with the insured, as prescribed below:

ROC nationals who were previously enrolled in NHI or employees who maintain a registered household in the Taiwan area for more than 4 months must enroll in the program without delay. The statement above also applies to Category 1 employees who already have a registered household in Taiwan.

Foreign nationals staying in Taiwan for more than 4 months and in possession of an alien residence certificate, or foreign nationals staying with relatives who qualify as an insured person, must enroll in the NHI. For Category 1 foreign employees, the enrollment of NHI is compulsory.

NHI Medical Service Institutes

NHI medical service institutes include:

NHI Premium Rate

The NHI premium rate is 4.69% of the employee's insured salary. The schedule of insured salary consists of 49 levels, where the lowest and highest are NTD 22,000 and NTD 182,000, respectively. Premiums are not assessed on any portion of a monthly wage that exceeds the maximum figure.

Second Generation National Health Insurance

A second generation NHI became effective on January 1, 2013. According to the NHI, Categories 1 to 4 and 6 insured persons with the following types of earnings (or income) must pay a supplementary premium(current rate is 1.91%), which will be deducted by the premium withholder upon payment and paid over to the insurer before the end of the month following the payment. However, the supplementary premium(current rate is 1.91%) does not apply to the portion of the single benefit payment that exceeds NTD 10 million or payments not reaching a certain amount:

Furthermore, when the total amount of salary paid exceeds the insured payroll-related amount for that month, the group insurance applicant of items 1 to 3 of Category 1 must pay the supplementary premium(current rate is 1.91%), which is calculated based on the difference as well as the rate and paid jointly per month in accordance with payment structure in Article 27.

Labor Insurance (LI)

LI provides the statutory basis for compulsory coverage of social security for a large part of the workforce in Taiwan.

LI provides cash benefits for retirement, illness, unemployment, disability, maternity and death, to cover ordinary risks as well as occupational risks (including work injuries and occupational diseases). LI provides coverage to employees and workers in the 15-65 age group employed in public or private factories, mines, ranches, forestry firms, tea plantations, communications and transportation enterprises, public utilities and journalistic, cultural, non-profit or cooperative organizations with 5 or more workers.

LI also provides coverage to employees of government agencies or public and private schools who have not been covered by public insurance. Skilled trainees of government-registered vocational training organizations, full-time fishery workers, and workers belonging to trade associations without permanent employers, including the self-employed are also covered by LI. Moreover, foreign employees and workers in any of the categories mentioned above are also covered by LI. Once an establishment provides LI to its employees, the coverage cannot be withdrawn even if the number of employees/workers falls below five in the future.

LI Premium Rate

The LI premium is calculated as a percentage of the member's insured salary up to a current monthly maximum of NT$45,800 (the minimum monthly insured salary is NT$22,000). As from January 1, 2017, the premium rate of LI is 9.5% (not including the 1% EI premium) of insured salary, which is split among the employer (70%), the employee (20%), and the government (10%).

The employer also is required to pay a premium for occupational hazard benefits, ranging from 0.09% to 1.06% of the insured salary (including the Business Category Accident Premium, ranging from 0.03% to 1.00% and a fixed rate of 0.06% for an on- and off-duty accident premium), depending on the occupational risk of the industry.

Employment Insurance (EI)

Employees that are above the age of 15 and below 65 are to be deemed as collective insured people under the establishments they work for or belong to, unless otherwise excluded by the establishments under the provision of Article 5, Paragraph 2 of Employment Insurance Act. The insured people should be: 1. holders of ROC citizenship; 2. employed foreigners or residents from Mainland China, Hong Kong or Macau that have married a ROC citizen who has a domicile registered in ROC's territory. Employment Insurance Act covers unemployment benefits, early re-employment allowance, vocational training living allowance, special allowance for unpaid parental leaves, and National Health Insurance premium subsidies for unemployed insured persons and dependants enrolled with the insured person. Employment insurance premium is 1% of the insured salary, of which the employer, the employee and the government shoulder 70%, 20% and 10% respectively.

Other Labor Regulations

Minimum Wage

The government adjusted the minimum wage, which became effective January 1, 2018, to better reflect Taiwan's general economic growth as well as increases in the average consumer price index while also enhancing the living standard and purchasing power of laborers, For full-time workers, the monthly minimum salary was adjusted from NT$21,009 to NT$22,000 and the minimum hourly wage has been increased to NT$140 for part-time workers from January 1, 2018.

Working Hours

Normal Working Hours

Overtime

Leave

Retirement Benefits

LI old-age benefits, LSL retirement benefits and LPA retirement benefits

Depending on the retirement plan selected by an employee, he or she may receive retirement benefits from the LSL and/or LPA retirement plan, as well as old age benefits provided by LI upon retirement. LI old age benefits are managed independently from LSL or LPA retirement plans. As such, upon meeting eligibility and fulfilling application requirements, an employee is entitled to claim old age benefits upon retirement.

LI Old Age Benefits

Eligibility and Retirement Age:

Standards of Benefit

Labor Pension Act- New Labor Pension System

Labor Pension Act put into practice on July 1, 2005. As for the receiving and payment of labor pensions contained in the new labor pension system, their safekeeping, the additional payment for arrear, the payment of administrative fines and their executive compulsion will be delegated and handled by the Bureau of Labor Insurance. Individual and special accounts will play a major role and are supplemented by annuity insurance programs under the new Act. Please see the following explanation respectively:

Individual Labor Pension Account

Annuity Insurance

Severance Payment

Labor Standards Law

Under the LSL, the termination of an employment contract requires a notice period of 10 days to employees who have been working for more than 3 months but less than 1 year; 20 days' notice is required for employees with at least 1 but less than 3 years of service; and 30 days' notice is required for those with more than 3 years of service. After termination notice is given to an employee, 2 paid days off from work are granted during each week of the notice period so that the employee may search for a new job. Employers under the LSL must provide severance pay of 1 month's salary for each year of service.

An employer may terminate a labor contract with advance notice if any one of the following five conditions exists:

An employer may dismiss an employee without advance notice if any one of following six conditions exists:

For the first, second, fourth, fifth, or sixth conditions, the employer must terminate the employee within 30 days after the employer becomes aware that such circumstances exist.

Labor Pension Act

For employees who are subject to the pension mechanism under the Labor Pension Act (LPA), severance pay is calculated at half the average monthly wage for each year of service following enforcement of the LPA. The severance pay for a period of service of less than one year shall be pro-rated. Total severance pay shall not exceed six months of the average monthly wage.

Severance pay calculated under either the LSL or the LPA shall be paid within 30 days after the termination of the labor contract.

Registration of Work Rules (LSL Article 70)

An employer hiring more than 30 employees shall establish work rules in accordance with the nature of the business, and shall publicly display the work rules after they have been submitted to the competent authority for approval and registration. The rules shall specify the following items:

Employee Welfare (Employees' Welfare Funds Act)

The Employees' Welfare Funds Act requires every employer with more than 50 employees to provide funds for the establishment of an Employee Welfare Committee. The custody and usage of the employees' welfare funds shall be handled by the employees' welfare committees jointly set up by both the labor and management representatives. Representatives from labor shall not be less than two-thirds.

The following are the sources of funds to support the Welfare Committee's activities:

Allocations from the fund may be made for the following Welfare Committee activities covered by the Act.

The application, coverage and subsidy proportion of the Employee Welfare Fund is stipulated as follows: No limitation on each subsidy category is set. However, the total subsidies of the year should not exceed the annual revenue. Cash subsidies should be given in an equitable way and the amount should not exceed 40% of the annual revenue.

For more information, please visit Ministry of Labor, Bureau of Labor Insurance and National Health Insurance Administration.

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