Many households in Singapore have maids nowadays. Foreign Domestic Workers (FDWs) can be a blessing, and if you’re considering hiring a maid, this quick guide outlines what you need to know as an employer.
Eligibility (Employer requirements for hiring an FDW)
Yes, hiring an FDW involves more than just paying their salary. Some requirements must be met. The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) stipulates that you must be at least 21 years old, capable of being a responsible employer, and not be an undischarged bankrupt to pay for a maid’s services.
If you’re hiring for the first time, you are required to attend an Employer Orientation Program (EOP) before submitting a work visa application for your maid. This brief three-hour training, which is also available online, teaches you your responsibilities as an FDW employer.
Required maid insurance
Before your employee arrives in Singapore, you must get maid insurance, including medical and personal accident coverage. This protection package, also known as maid insurance, protects not just the maid but also you, the employer.
Maid insurance can save you a great deal of hassle (and pain) as it typically covers unanticipated charges such as hospitalization and surgical fees for your maid, repatriation costs, and termination and re-hiring costs.
Before the Work Permit may be given, you are also needed to have your maid undergo a medical checkup within two weeks of her arrival in Singapore by a Singapore-registered doctor.
Duties of your maid
In Singapore, the example of the maid who sued a millionaire has shown flaws in the foreign domestic help system. Maids are only permitted to do household or domestic duties at the place specified in the contract.
Make a list of your requirements before hiring a maid to limit your search criteria. This ensures that the skillset of your maid matches your expectations for her. You can apply for a second maid if you require additional assistance as a full-time caretaker for young children or elderly parents.
Rest days for your maid
We, as employees, desire and require relaxation days. So does your maid. Moreover, they have the legal right to a weekly rest day. This leisure day should be jointly agreed upon by both the employer and the employee. You must also provide them with sufficient nourishment.
Unauthorized employment of maids
Employing a maid in a residence other than the one for which she is registered is prohibited. There are, however, exceptions, such as when your maid may assist in caring for your close relatives at their homes throughout the day while you are at work.
Hiring an FDW without a legitimate work permit
Consider hiring a transfer maid if you require domestic assistance immediately. Avoid hiring an FDW without a proper work permit to save time. Otherwise, you might face a fine of S$5,000 to S$30,000, up to one year in jail, or both! Certainly not worth taking the risk!
Prepared to employ a maid?
You and your maid may establish a positive and mutually beneficial relationship with mutual regard and sincerity. Remember the requirements and protect yourself and your maid with maid insurance.