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Helper maternity leave & reduced work duties

  1. #1
    Liquorice is offline Registered User
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    Helper maternity leave & reduced work duties

    Hi, does anyone know the regulations about maternity leave for helpers? My helper recently told me she was pregnant and I'm in the process of trying to work out how to manage the next six or seven months that she is pregnant and on maternity leave.

    From what I know of my helper's personality, I anticipate that she will take full advantage of pregnancy to cut down her work load - already at almost three months she doesn't want to cook our food / too tired to do the washing up in the evenings etc. Whilst I fully understand the horrible exhaustion of the first three months and the discomfort of the last three, she pretty much works half days already so has plenty of time to sleep and rest around the few chores she is required to do. I imagine that as her pregnancy progresses - particularly in the third trimester - she will cut down her work load even more. As I said, she only works half days now - less work than I would do in the UK if I lived there just in running the house (not to mention working full time as well). In terms of what work she does as her pregnancy progresses, I guess I have little control, but can I make her take her maternity leave four weeks before she delivers if she is doing no work at all by that point? Does anyone know? Or can she just effectively stop working a couple of months before she's due but insist she only starts her maternity once the baby is born?

  2. #2
    Portia is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liquorice View Post
    In terms of what work she does as her pregnancy progresses, I guess I have little control, but can I make her take her maternity leave four weeks before she delivers if she is doing no work at all by that point? Does anyone know? Or can she just effectively stop working a couple of months before she's due but insist she only starts her maternity once the baby is born?
    You can require her to start her maternity leave 4 weeks before her due date. See the highlighted bit below from section 12AA of the Employment Ordinance which says:

    "(1) With the agreement of her employer, a pregnant employee may decide on the date of commencement of her 10 weeks maternity leave, provided that such date is within a period of not less than 2 weeks before, and not more than 4 weeks before, the expected date of confinement.
    (2) If the employee does not exercise her option to decide on the date of commencement in subsection (1), or if she fails to secure her employer's agreement to her proposed leave schedule, the date of commencement of maternity leave shall be 4 weeks immediately before the expected date of confinement."

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    arleneli is offline Registered User
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    Do you have children??? are you planning on keeping her after maternity leave???? I know some people would compensate her (according to law of course) and ask her to leave as they need someone to take care of the children full time.

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    Shenzhennifer is offline Registered User
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    Smells like trouble. I'd find a legal way to lt her go. Sounds like you weren't too happy with her performance before the pregnancy anyway.

  5. #5
    Liquorice is offline Registered User
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    I would let her go if I could but I thought it was illegal. Can I legally let her go as long as I pay her up to the end of her maternity leave?

    Yes, I have a 6 month old baby. I don't need so much help with him right now but I will come September. She wants to continue to work for me afterwards but I just can't see how it would work out. My son would be 1 year old only and her own baby would be a full time job for many months. Even at 4 or 5 months when things get easier with hers, I am sure that naturally she would prioritise her baby's needs over mine.

  6. #6
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    rani is offline Administrator
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    Licqorice, is the father a HK resident and not on a Domestic Helper visa? Most helpers, go home to have their babies and leave them with a relative. I don't think the baby will get a dependent visa through the mother. It all depends who the father is.


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    http://hongkonginformer.com/439/help...aughter-in-hk/
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  7. #7
    Liquorice is offline Registered User
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    Rani, the father is Sri Lankan - I employed them both as domestic helpers. I knew the risk of pregnancy but I checked with them before hand and they said they absolutely were not thinking of another baby. She has been working for me for 7 months only and him for only 5. I asked her if she wanted to go back to Sri Lanka to have the baby but she said that then she wouldn't be able to bring the baby in to Hong Kong, that is why she wants to have it here.

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    rani's Avatar
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    Gosh! She's hardly been with you. Sorry you're going through this. The child won't get a dependent visa, so he/she will be here illegally? I would drop immigration explaining the situation and see what they say.
    Founder of GeoBaby.Com

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