Thursday, January 20, 2022

What an OFW Needs to Know About Employment Contract

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Every employment is ideally bound with a set of agreements between an employer and employee with conditions of service, a list of duties, and benefits amenable to both parties. This is clearly stated in a standard employment contract.

While the tasked agency, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, tries to ensure all rights of workers are followed, and working conditions and benefits are following Philippine laws, some employers fail or refuse to follow the standard contract. Others seem ignorant and need to be reminded by their employees. In this regard, every worker must be aware of what is being stated at the standard employment contract.

Work contracts are being crafted based on the provisions and guidelines set by POEA. An employment contract is an essential document that an OFW must have at hand before departure. He or she must also fully understand what has been stipulated in the said contract. The contract must contain the following vital information:

  1. The employer’s report and the site of work is one of the most crucial pieces of data that must be in the contract. This is necessary for the employee and his/her family to know information such as employer and workplace location.
  2. The agency’s contact information. The agency’s name, office address, and contact information must also be stipulated in the contract to know who the hiring agency within the country was. Furthermore, these details are also important because they serve as a basis in determining the legitimacy of a hiring body. An agency that is accredited by POEA denotes the legitimacy of the said agency.
  3. The employee’s information and job position is necessary for the employee to know what kind of work he or she would do when he or she arrives in the country of destination.
  4. The length of the validity of the contract states for long, the contract would be valid. This is important to protect the rights of the employee from unjust termination or unnecessary extension of the current agreement that deprives workers to seek salary adjustment.poea_contract
  5. The number of working hours, basic monthly salary, and overtime pay are also essentials in a contract. This information goes hand in hand to set the limits of regular working hours, salary for those hours, and additional compensation for work done beyond those hours.
  6. Some employers also offer free transportation, food, and accommodation. These should also appear in the contract for the employee to be able to weigh the expenses to be incurred, as well as prepare for initial costs upon arrival in case that the employer would not arrange them.
  7. Every employment should come with employee benefits that include vacation and or sick leave, medical and dental, and other compensations in cases of injuries or death related to work. Another benefit required by the Philippine law on an OFW employment is for an OFW to have a Personal Life Accident Insurance. In case of an employee’s death during the term of the contract, repatriation is also the employer’s responsibility.
  8. Contract termination can be done by either party and may be due to sickness or without just reason provided that a one-month prior notice is given.
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