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Helpers who do not live in-Legal?

  1. #1
    BeaMae is offline Registered User
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    Helpers who do not live in-Legal?

    Hello,

    We are moving to HK in March and will be looking for a helper at some point once we get there. Ideally we could find someone who does not live with us, at least to start, but I am not clear if that is legal, or recommended. I have gone to the HK Govt website, but can't find anything specific about the living arrangements. Does anyone have any information on this? Can we hire a full time helper legally without them living in, or do they need to be part time?

    Thank you so much for your help!!

  2. #2
    aussiegal is offline Registered User
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    It is illegal (unless they are a local which is very rare) but of course many people take the risk anyway.

    Curious why you want them to live out? Is it just that you have not had a helper before and the thought of having someone under foot all the time scares you? You'll come round, most of us do :) The set up of apartments here is such that they live off the kitchen in their own room, have their own door to come and go etc so it's not like you have to see them all day long and you certainly don't have to eat with them, watch tv with them unless you choose to.

  3. #3
    BeaMae is offline Registered User
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    Yes, it is partially a comfort issue. We are not too excited about having someone live in, especially until we know them and like them. But I realize that is not how it works. Is there such a thing as part time helpers who are legal and do not live in? I do not think I will need someone full time. Thanks!

  4. #4
    AussieMum is offline Registered User
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    Hi, I have just hired a helper for the first time. Although our helper will be live in, we found a document that does advise that it is illegal to live out. Click on the below link, and go to link under the 'wages' A8. In the link go to the bottom of page 5, Q1.7). This was found on the immigration departments website when I was looking into wages:
    http://www.immd.gov.hk/ehtml/faq_fdh.htm#4
    As this was our first full time helper, we delayed hiring one for around 6 months purely due to the uneasiness of having someone else live with us. But, we did a lot of reserch, interviews and think we have found the right person, so are willing to give it a go, especially now I am pregnant with my second and have a one year old as well. The hesitation of many hiring F/T helpers are for this reason.
    Although it is technically illegal, many do have their helpers live out at boarding houses or alternative accommodation for many reasons, such as a lack of room, they are not comfortable with having a helper live with them, or some apartments just don't have living quarters for them. I guess it is upto you, but it is not something you need to jump into straight away. Wait to move here, settle down, make some friends and try and gain as much info from them as you can. Best of luck with your decision, I hope this helps.

  5. #5
    BeaMae is offline Registered User
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    Thank you so much for your input, I really appreciate it. I am not ready to have anyone live in yet and will wait for a while before deciding what to do. I think that is good advice, I am not working when we get there and have a 2 year old, so I will busy just trying to get us settled. We are considering #2, and if we do that I will probably begin to think more seriously about it. Thanks again!!

  6. #6
    aussiegal is offline Registered User
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    If I had just one child to look after I would just get a part-timer. They are easy enough to come by and well priced. Most are paid $50-60/hour.

    With two or more children it's definitely worth having a full time live in as HK is a decidely difficult place to get around with kids.

  7. #7
    tstmum is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by aussiegal View Post
    The set up of apartments here is such that they live off the kitchen in their own room, have their own door to come and go etc so it's not like you have to see them all day long and you certainly don't have to eat with them, watch tv with them unless you choose to.
    The above info is a bit misleading. I think you'll find that in older style apartments (eg, the old university quarters in Pokfulam) that will be the case. However, in many other apartment complexes, particularly the new ones, the helper's "room" (if you can call it that, more like a cupboard in some cases) is not very big and they do not have a separate entrance - they need to enter through the main door like everyone else.

  8. #8
    BeaMae is offline Registered User
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    So part-time helpers are legal? That would be better for us, to start.

    And it is true that the helper's room in our building does not have a separate entrance.

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