Hiring a foreign domestic helper in Hong Kong is very affordable. Many families were hiring live-in helpers to take care their children and pets as well as do the general household chores.
Being an employer entails responsibilities including the safety and well being of the helper. This is the main objective of the Hong Kong government why they require all employers to avail the Employees’ Compensation Insurance. This will protect both the employers and the domestic helpers.
Taking out insurance policy is a legal requirement mandated by the Employees’ Compensation Ordinance. It allows foreign domestic helpers to enjoy the same benefits as with other workers in the country. The benefits include medical expenses coverage, compensation for loss of working capability and death compensation and funerals as well.
It is the responsibility of the employer to arrange the insurance of the helper without getting any fraction of the costs from the helper. The employer who would not get and pay such insurance policy may be sued to pay serious penalties including two years’ imprisonment and maximum fine or HK$100,000.
The employee has the right to ask for information regarding the insurance policy and other related documents from his or her employer.
It is the responsibility of the employer to give free medical treatment to his or her helper as long as it is within the employment contract. Medical coverage includes hospital expenses, consultations and emergency dental treatment. The medical costs can be highly expensive that’s why employers should get an insurance policy that offers comprehensive hospital and medical coverage.
The basic insurance plans usually cost $300 per annum and covers bodily injuries and death due to accidents. Disease acquired during the employment is also covered by the insurance policy. On the other hand, comprehensive plans may cost $750 annually. This insurance package includes personal accident insurance, health insurance, loan protection, repatriation expenses and others.
The employer should arrange the helper’s insurance two weeks’ prior of starting the employment contract. Likewise, the employer should also know how to report any work-related injury that may happen to the helper. It is required to notify the Labor Department for any injury.
Why is it important to get insurance for your helper?
Aside from avoiding fines for non-compliance or paying steep medical bills, employers should care about the wellbeing and health of the helper. It’s important that the helper is always in good health especially if he or she is in constant contact with the family specifically children.
It is also recommended that helpers should undergo medical examinations before starting the employment or renewing contracts.