The amended Employment Act 1955 now protects all employees instead of only those earning below RM2,000.
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Amendments to the Employment Act 1955 came into force on 1 January 2023 after it was deferred from 1 September last year.
The Employment (Amendement) Act 2022 is to protect all employees because previously, it only protected those earning below RM2,000.
The previous law also stated that employees with salaries more than RM4,000 will not be given certain benefits such as overtime pay, payments for working during holidays, termination benefits, lay-off benefits, retirement benefits and more.
Many employers have asked in December 2022 to further delay the enforcement of the amended Act.
As it stands, the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) has received complaints from employees about their workplaces not adhering to the amended Act.
While it’s expected for some companies to be resistant to changes, it still helps to know what new employee benefits in the amended Act are.
Here are some of the things you’re entitled to under the Employment (Amendment) Act 2022:
Calculation of wages for incomplete months of work
The amended Act includes a method to calculate the wages of an employee who hasn’t completed a whole month of service.
Maximum working hours
Maximum working hours reduced to 45 hours per week from the previous 48 hours.
Minimum rest days
Employees must be allowed in each week a rest day of one whole day.
Right to apply for flexible work arrangement
The right to apply for a flexible working arrangement such as partially working from home and/or office.
Minimum annual leave
Employees are entitled to a minimum annual leave of:
- 8 days for every twelve months of continuous service if they’re employed for less than 2 years.
- 12 days for those employed for 2 years or more but less than 5 years
- 16 days for those employed for 5 years or more.
Minimum sick leave
Employees are entitled to a minimum sick leave of:
- 14 days for every twelve months of continuous service for those employed less than 2 years.
- 18 days for those employed for 2 years or more but less than 5 years.
- 22 days for those employed for 5 years or more.
Maternity and paternity leave
Paid maternity leave will be increased to 98 days from 60 days. Pregnant employees are also now protected from being terminated on the grounds of their pregnancy or illness stemming from their pregnancy.
Fathers get to take 7 days of paid paternity leave.
Right to complain about discrimination at work
Employees can now lodge a complaint to the labour office if they face discrimination at their workplace.
Overtime pay and pay for working on holidays
For those earning a monthly salary below RM4000:
You can claim overtime (OT) pay at 1.5 times your normal hourly rate.
If you work on rest days, you’re entitled to a full day’s pay if you worked a half day and two days’ pay if you worked a full day.
If you’re working on a public holiday, you’re entitled to two days’ pay. However, if you’re required to work overtime on a public holiday, you must be paid three times of your normal hourly rate.