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Sunday, Sep 25, 2022

Foreign domestic helpers could apply for deferring return to place of origin

Foreign domestic helpers could apply for deferring return to place of origin

To assist foreign domestic helpers (FDHs) and their employers to cope with the pandemic, the government announced that FDHs could apply for deferring their return to the place of origin after the existing contract ends. And employers could also extend the validity period of existing contracts with outgoing FDHs.
Under normal circumstances, an FDH on a renewed contract with the same employer, or due to start a new contract with a new employer, may apply for deferring the return to the place of origin for no more than one year after the existing contract ends.

In view of the Covid-19 pandemic, the government announced extending the current flexibility arrangement. If FDHs were unable to return to the place of origin within the aforementioned one-year period, they may apply for a further extension of the limit of stay until the end of their contract, upon agreement with the employer.

Such applications are acceptable within eight weeks before the expiry of the existing limit of stay of the FDHs.

In addition, the Commissioner for Labour has given in-principle consent for all FDHs' contracts that will expire on or before September 30 to extend for a maximum of six months, on the basis that such variation is mutually agreed upon by both the employer and the FDH.

However, applications for further extensions of contracts that have already been extended under the previously announced flexibility arrangements will not be considered.

The government reminds employers and FDHs that the above flexibility arrangement must be mutually agreed upon by both parties, and the requirement for FDHs to return to their place of origin continues to be in place.
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