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Essential Employee Rights: A Guide to Workplace Fairness

by ikalmayang

In Malaysia, understanding your rights as an employee is crucial for fostering a fair and just workplace. The Employment Act lays the foundation for these rights, covering all employees regardless of occupation or wages. Let’s explore some key aspects every employee should be aware of:

I. Coverage under the Employment Act The Act encompasses all employees, offering protection irrespective of their wages or occupation. However, those earning above RM4,000 per month are exempted from certain provisions. Gig workers may also be covered under the Act if specific conditions are met, implying an employer-employee relationship.

II. Probationary Periods While probationary periods are not legally mandated, they are commonly recommended and typically last for three to six months. During this time, employees enjoy the same rights as regular employees. Employers must state the terms clearly in the employment contract, including the duration, confirmation process, and notice period for termination.

III. Minimum Wage and Working Hours The Minimum Wage Order 2022 establishes a baseline of RM1,500 for all employees, excluding domestic workers. Non-shift employees should not work more than 8 hours a day or 45 hours a week. Overtime pay is applicable for employees earning up to RM4,000, calculated based on the ordinary rate of pay.

IV. Rest Days, Overtime, and Flexible Work Arrangements Employees are entitled to a rest day every week, with continuous work for shift employees constituting a rest day. Overtime compensation is due for work on rest days or exceeding normal working hours. Additionally, employees can apply for flexible work arrangements, and employers must respond within 60 days, providing reasons if the application is refused.

V. Employment Contracts Fixed-term employment beyond one month requires a formal, written contract. The contract should specify essential terms such as work scope, location, wage rate, benefits, leave policies, and termination procedures. Employers must retain these contracts for at least six years. While oral contracts are accepted, written contracts are recommended to avoid future disputes.

Understanding your rights empowers you to navigate the workplace confidently, fostering a level playing field and preventing conflicts. Employers benefit from clear guidelines, ensuring a positive and compliant workplace. In case of disputes, seek assistance from relevant authorities for a fair and harmonious professional landscape. Stay informed, refer to the Employment Act, and don’t hesitate to seek guidance if you believe your rights are violated. A harmonious workplace is built on awareness and respect for the rights of both employers and employees.

Sources: https://employmenthero.com/my/blog/basic-rights-employees/

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