Violations that enterprises in Viet Nam often commit when employing staff include probation, salary deductions, keeping official copies of personal documents and transferring employees to a different job.
|Enterprises with more than 10 employees must put their labour regulations in writing and have these registered with provincial state labour-management authorities.— VNA/VNS Photo Vu Sinh
In case there exists an official agreement between an enterprise and an employee on the length of the employee's probationary or trial period, such an agreement may serve as the probationary employment contract.
A probation period of no more than 60 days will apply to jobs with professional titles requiring academic or technical qualifications at the level of junior college or higher. In contrast, a probationary period of no more than 30 days will apply to jobs requiring academic or technical qualifications at the level of vocational or professional secondary school and to the positions of technical worker or professional staff member.
As prescribed in the Labour Code, the probation period can only apply once to one job, and enterprises are not permitted to lengthen such a period even when the employee requests for it. Under provisions of previous laws, enterprises are held responsible for announcing the results of the probationary period to the concerned employee when such a period expires. If an employee is kept working without receiving any notification of these results, he/she will be, undoubtedly, considered official and regularly-employed staff.
However, these provisions have since been abolished, and current labour laws only generally stipulate, without detailed instructions, that the employer must enter into a labour contract with the employee once his/her performance during the probationary period is deemed satisfactory.
Therefore, it is essential for enterprises to pay special attention to the length of time involved in the probationary period for determining an employees' fitness for the job when signing probationary contracts with employees. In addition, the performance requirements for the probationary period should be openly discussed with employees to guarantee transparency and impartiality, and prevent any conflicts that might arise when employees fail to meet the performance requirements set by the enterprise.
(2) Labour regulations
Enterprises with more than 10 employees must put their labour regulations in writing and have these registered with provincial state labour-management authorities.
Employees must be fully informed of such regulations, which must be prominently displayed where necessary at the workplace. However, PLF has become aware that a significant number of enterprises have forgotten to notify their employees of these regulations after registering them with concerned authorities.
Consequently, it becomes rather difficult for enterprises to apply disciplinary punishment for employees' violation of labour regulations because, without any dissemination of information on these regulations by the enterprise, it is impossible for the employees to correctly comply with such regulations.
(3) Transferring employees to a job that is different from that in the labour contract
Enterprises are permitted to temporarily transfer employees to a job that is different from that in the labour contract in a number of cases prescribed by law for no more than 60 cumulative working days in a given year. In addition, the employees must be notified of such a change at least three working days before the transfer is to take effect.
If the wages of the previous job are higher than that of the current job, the former wages must remain unchanged for 30 working days. Furthermore, the salary for the new job must be at least 85 per cent of that of the old job but not lower than the regional minimum wages stipulated by the Government.
(4) Salary deductions
Enterprises are not allowed to impose financial penalty or salary decrease in lieu of disciplinary punishment for breach of labour regulations.
In cases where employees happen to break tools and equipment or negligently commit other acts causing the enterprise to experience a not too severe material loss, which costs no more than 10 months of regional minimum wages, the enterprise has the right to deduct salaries of such employees for damages. The maximum compensation is three months of wages, a deduction of no more than 30 per cent of the monthly salary after income tax, and remittance of social, medical, and unemployment insurance.
(5) Keeping official copies of documents
When entering into and implementing labour contracts, enterprises must not keep any official copies of employees' personal documents, qualifications and certificates.
PLF - LAW FIRM