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  • September 20, 2021
  • Andy

Singapore Labour Legislation: What You Need to Know


The laws pertaining to employment in Singapore are mostly set out in the Singapore Employment Act. This applies to most employees, not including those in managerial or executive positions, domestic workers, seamen and some Government staff. 

The Singapore Employment Act covers various aspects of employment, including: 

Salary and Bonus 

There is no minimum salary requirement stipulated in the Employment Act, so this is subject to negotiation between the employer and employee. The salary must be paid at least once a month within 7 days after the end of the salary period. Overtime pay, if applicable, must be paid within 14 days of the stipulated salary period. There is no requirement of bonus payment under the Employment Act of Singapore. 

Hours of Work and Overtime 

Hours of work and overtime are regulated under the Singapore Employment Act for those employees earning below SGD 2,600/month. These employees are entitled to work no more than 44 hours per week. The Employment Act also states that employees cannot work for more than 6 hours without a break. Inclusive of overtime work, employees cannot work more than 12 hours per day except under certain circumstances. Employees are entitled to 1 rest day (deemed as a non-working day from midnight to midnight) per week. 

Annual Leave 

For employees earning less than SGD 2,600/month, the statutory annual leave is outlined in the Employment Act. To qualify for annual leave, the employee must have served at least 3 months with the employer. The amount of annual leave is dependent on the contractual agreement between the employee and your employer, but is subject to a minimum of 7 days during the first year, and 1 extra day for each additional year of service. Annual leave taken even on a half-working day is considered 1 day’s leave, unless otherwise stated in the employment contract.  

Maternity and Childcare Leave 

Female employees that have been employed for more than 3 months may be eligible for paid maternity leave benefits. Eligible female employees are entitled to a total of 16 weeks leave. Employers are prohibited from dismissing any employees on maternity leave.  

Central Provident Fund (CPF) Contributions 

For employees that are Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, the employer is required to make contributions to the CPF fund. Monthly contributions are made by both the employee and employer. The maximum CPF contribution rate for employer and employee is 16% and 20% respectively and can be lower depending on certain factors such as employee age, permanent resident status, etc.  

These are just some of the laws covering employment and recruitment in Singapore. When you engage a recruitment agency to work with you to secure new hires, you should be made aware of any legislation that could affect you. If you need any help or advice, please do not hesitate to contact us.   

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