Chapter 4 Working Conditions and Welfares
Remuneration for seafarers who work on board a ship shallinclude wages and allowances, and special bonuses.
An employer shall not make advance deduction of wages as indemnity.
The minimum standards of seafarer wages, on-shore pay and overtime charges shall be prescribed by the competent authority.
The minimum wages mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall be not less than the wages stipulated by the basic work criteria of the Labor Standard Law.
The employer shall provide necessary night safety protection measures for the seafarers who are required to perform their work between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. on the next day.
The employer shall not instruct any seafarer under 18 years of age to perform his/her work during the period mentioned in the preceding paragraph.
Before employing a female seafarer who is pregnant or within eight weeks after childbirth to work on board a ship, the employer shall take into account the advice given by the doctor generally evaluating the result of the physical examination performed for the female seafarer, and shall provide necessary maternal health protection measures.
In case a female seafarer is confirmed in pregnancy during the voyage, the employer shall instruct her to do light duties and the jobs necessary for navigation safety after having provided necessary maternal health protection measures. The employer shall not reduce any remuneration that the female seafarer is supposed to receive.
The employer shall not instruct the seafarers under 18 years of age to conduct dangerous or harmful works
When the employer instructs any of the following female seafarers to conduct dangerous or harmful works, the employer shall take the doctor’s suitability assessment recommendations into account and shall provide necessary maternal health protection measures:
1. Female seafarers in pregnancy; or
2. Female seafarers within one year after childbirth.
Criteria for determining the dangerous or harmful works mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall be prescribed by the competent authority.
The employer shall submit to the shipping administration authority a monthly report specifying the number of female seafarers resigning due to pregnancy, childbirth or other factors, the ratio of the resigned female seafarers and other relevant statistical data.
Regular working hours for a seafarer is 44 hours per week. Provided that the seafarer is taking turns at watchkeeping because of navigation needs.
Seafarers’ regular working hours per week exceeding 44 hours shall be deemed as overtime hours, for which the employer shall pay overtime charges.
Seafarers shall have at least one regular day off in every seven days, unless the seafarer is taking turns at watchkeeping because of navigation needs.
For the case mentioned in the proviso of the preceding paragraph, the employer shall arrange for taking leaves by turns.
If it is necessary to navigate on a national holiday or the Navigation Day, the master is entitled to arrange the seafarers to undertake the necessary works by taking turns at watchkeeping, entering or leaving ports and serving meals. The employer shall pay holiday overtime charges for such works based on the normal wage.
If a seafarer has to extend working hours because of navigation need, he/she shall fill in and submit an overtime application form to the master or department head for validation before performing his/her works.
It may be set down in the employment contract that the seafarers’ overtime charges shall be computed based on the normal wage per hour and paid as a fixed overtime charge. Nevertheless, the hours for overtime computation charge shall be at least 85 working hours per month.
The employer shall give 30-day annual paid leaves to seafarers who have worked for one year on the ship, and the paid leaves shall be computed pro rata in accordance with working months for those who have worked less than one year.
When obtaining consents from seafarers to work during paid leaves, the employer shall pay them extra daily wage per day. The employer shall pay wage and allowance for leave days that are not taken because of year ending or termination of the contract.
After signing an employment contract, the employer shall pay seafarers the remuneration equivalent to the wage during the period of stand-by ashore while waiting to board a ship.
The employer shall pay remuneration equivalent to the seafarers’ wage during the periods of examination or training as assigned by the employer.
Except the seafarers agree the transfer of serving ships owned by the same employer, the employer, who terminates employment contracts in accordance with Paragraph 1 and proviso of Paragraph 3 of Article 22, or the reasons not attributable to seafarers, shall give severance pays based on the followings criteria:
1. For seafarers paid on monthly basis: a three-month severance pay based on the average wage.
2. For seafarers paid on voyage basis: the full amount of remuneration.
3. For seafarers having worked consecutively for three years on the ships owned by the same employer: in addition to the payment made in accordance with Item 1, one-month severance pay based on average wage for every one year from the fourth year. The working year less than one full year shall be computed on a pro rata basis, and less than one full month shall be computed as one month.
Upon termination of an employment contract, the employer and the master shall, in all events, repatriate the seafarers, whose contracts are terminated at places beyond the place of employment, under escort back to the place where they are engaged. It is also applicable to those injured or ill seafarers going ashore.
The obligations of repatriation under escort back to the place where they are engaged mentioned in the preceding paragraph shall include the cost of transportation, accommodation, meals and other necessary expenses.
The employer is entitled to request the seafarers, who are repatriated under escort back to the place where they are engaged based on seafarers’ personal reasons, to pay the expenses as provided in the preceding paragraph.
The employer shall be responsible for medical expenses for injured or ill seafarers during their employment period, unless the non-work related injuries or illnesses were caused by alcoholic, gross negligence or indiscipline.
The employer is entitled to stop bearing medical expenses for a seafarer’s injuries or illnesses, which were not caused by undertaking his/her duties, after sixteen weeks therefrom.
The employer shall also pay the original wage during the period of bearing medical expenses.
The employer shall pay disability compensations to the seafarers who get recovered from injuries or illnesses suffered during the period of undertaking their duties but become disabled later, or who do not totally get recovered after two years, and for such disabilities remaining in their bodies after they are examined and certified by an approved medical institution. The disability compensations shall be on a lump-sum basis in accordance with the average wage and the degree of disabilities. Criteria of the payment of disability compensations shall be in accordance with the Labor Insurance Statute.
The degree of disability remaining in the seafarers’ body, if certified by an assigned doctor as 50 percent or more, and that in the same time ranked as the 7th grade or higher, or the 11th grade or higher as prescribed in the Labor Insurance Act, and proved to be unsuitable for working on board, the seafarers shall be paid the highest level of disability compensation.
If a seafarer who died not in the performance of duties during service period or died because of injuries or illnesses not arising from the performance of duties, the employer shall pay a lump sum of death compensation equivalent to 20-month average wage to the survivors of the seafarers.
If a seafarer who died in the performance of duties during service period or died because of injuries or illnesses arising from the performance of duties, the employer shall pay a lump sum of death compensation equivalent to 40-month average wage to the survivors of the seafarers.
If the ship is sunk or missing and thus causing seafarers missing, the mployer shall pay survivors of the seafarer death compensations in accordance with the provisions of the preceding paragraph.
The seafarers death compensation shall be paid to survivors in the following order:
1. Spouse and children.
5.Brothers and sisters.
If the seafarer died during service period, the employer shall pay funeral expenses equivalent to 6-month average wage.
The injury, illness or death of a master during his/her service period shall be prima facie caused by performing his/her duties, unless the injury, illness or death resulted from his/her gross negligence or indiscipline.
The right to claim the medical expenses provided in Article 41, disability compensations provided in Article 44, death compensations provided in Article 45 and 46, and funeral expenses provided in Article 48 shall be extinguished by prescription if not exercised within two years from the date the rights is granted.
The rights provided in the preceding paragraph shall not be affected by resignations of seafarers, and shall not be assigned, mortgaged, offset, seized or pledged.
The employer shall pay the death compensations provided in Article 46 within 15 days after the date of the claim made and the funeral expenses provided in Article 48 within 3 days after the date of the claim made.
A seafarer may apply for voluntary retirement under either of the following conditions:
1 .Where has worked on ships for fifteen years and attains the age of fifty-five.
2. Where has worked on ships for more than twenty years.
The employer may force a seafarer to retire in either of the following conditions:
1. The seafarer attains the age of 65;
2. The seafarer is under guardianship or has declared assistantship; or
3. According to the Labor Insurance Act the degree of disability remaining in the seafarers’ body is determined to be unsuitable for working on board.
A retired seafarer at the age of 65 can be hired in case he/she complies with the standard of physical examination.
The seniority of service and the payment of retirement pension of a seafarer prior to the enactment of This Act shall be computed in accordance with the Maritime Law before the enactment of This Act.
In order to protect seafarers’ security and livelihood, the employer shall insure the Labor insurance and National Health Insurance for the seafarers and reserve seafarers employed by him.
In order to protect the retirement benefit of seafarers, the retirement system prescribed by the Labor Pension Act shall apply to the retirement matters for seafarers of R.O.C. nationality, unless those who have not opted for the retirement system under the LaborPension Act pursuant to Article 9 of the Labor Pension Act.
For the standard for payment of employee’s pension as mentioned in the proviso of the preceding paragraph, the seniority of service before the enactment of this Act shall be computed in accordance with Paragraph 4 of Article 51, while the seniority of service after the enactment of This Act shall be computed in accordance with Article 55 of the Labor Standard Law.
For seafarers who are employed by the same employer after applying the retirement system prescribed in the Labor Pension Act, their seniority of service before such application shall be reserved. For the standard of payment of their pension, the seniority of service before the enactment of this Act shall be computed in accordance with Paragraph 4 of Article 51, while the seniority of service after the enactment of This Act shall be computed in accordance with Article 55 of the Labor Standard Law.
The employer shall allocate a pension reserve for seafarers in the preceding two paragraphs pursuant to Article 56 of the Labor Standard Law.
For the seafarers who apply to the retirement system under the Labor Pension Act, the severance pay shall be paid in accordance with Articles 39 and 54.
For seafarers hired by the same employer for on-shore work, the seniority of service shall be combined for computation as the retirement conditions, and the pension shall be computed on the average wage specified in Article 2 of the Labor Standard Law according to their onboard and on-shore work respectively.
The right to claim the pension payment shall be extinguished by prescription if not exercised within five (5) years commencing from the month following retirement.
If, according to this Act, the severance pays, overtime charges and disability/death compensations, and the salaries/expenses that shall be paid during treatment of injury/illness, as well as the funeral and burial expenses, are less than the severance pays, extended working hour wages and vocational casualty compensations provided by the Labor Standard Law, the payment shall be made in accordance with the standard provided by the Labor Standard Law.
The employer shall insure liability insurance covering medical expenses, disability/death compensations, and funeral expenses for which the employer shall be liable to pay in accordance with this Act.
All seafarers and reserve seafarers to be employed shall be included in the employees’ welfare fund arrangements effected by the employer in accordance with the Employers’ Welfare Fund Statute.
The shipping administration authority may afford assistance for establishing seafarer welfare facilities in any appropriate ports, including seafarer welfare, cultural, recreational and informational equipment.