These Work-Related Numbers You Should Know When Working in China

China has its own system for annual leave, endowment insurance and pension, but how do these terms actually impact our daily lives? If youre an expat living and working in China, here are some numbers you should know about during your employment period or before you sign a contract. 

The labor contract should be signed within 1 month 

To establish a labor relationship, a labor contract shall be concluded within one month from the date of employment.

If the employer fails to conclude a labor contract with the employee after one month from the date of employment, it shall pay the employee two times the value of his or her monthly salary.

-- Article 82 of the Law of the People's Republic of China on Employment Contracts (Labor Contract Law)

The probation period can't exceed months

If the term of the labor contract is more than one month and less than one year, the probation period cannot exceed one month. If the term of the labor contract is less than 3 years, the trial period shall not exceed 2 months; for a fixed period of 3 years or more and a labor contract without a fixed period, the trial period shall not exceed 6 months.

-- Article 19 of the Law of the People's Republic of China on Employment Contracts (Labor Contract Law) 

Therefore, no matter what company you work for, the trial period can be no longer than 6 months.

 15 years insured

Endowment insurance must be insured for at least 15 years, and you can apply for a monthly pension when you reach the retirement age.

However, it should be noted that the 15-year period is only a prerequisite for employees to receive basic pension insurance after retirement. If the payment is intermittent for several years, the proportion of basic pension insurance will be reduced by a few percentage rates. 

If you fail to pay for your medial insurance for 3 consecutive months,  then you will no longer benefit from this insurance.

Interrupting the payment of medical insurance will not only affect your total payment period, but also the interruption of payment may result in your insufficient accumulated years, and you will not be able to enjoy the medical insurance benefits on time.

However, medical insurance has a three-month buffer period from the date of suspension. If this period is exceeded, the continuous payment period begins to be recalculated.

Therefore, everyone must pay attention to the time when their medical insurance is stopped; it must not exceed 3 months!

Unemployment insurance claims cannot exceed 24 months

When an unemployed person loses his employer and his/her accumulated contributions for less than one year, the period of receiving unemployment insurance benefits is up to 12 months; the accumulated contributions are less than ten years after five years. The maximum period for receiving unemployment insurance benefits is 18 months. If the accumulated contributions are more than 10 years, the maximum period for receiving unemployment insurance benefits is 24 months.

-- Article 46 of Social Insurance Law

In other words, under no circumstances should the unemployment insurance payment period be more than 24 months.

The state implements a working hour system in which the working hours of workers cannot be more than 8 hours per day and the average weekly working hours are not more than 44 hours.

Overtime can't exceed 36 hours per month

The employer shall ensure that the worker has at least one day off per week.

Due to the needs of production and operation, the employer may extend the working hours after consultation with the trade unions and laborers, generally not more than one hour per day; for special reasons, it is necessary to extend the working hours, and to extend the working hours under the conditions of ensuring the health of the workers. The date cannot exceed 3 hours, but it cannot exceed 36 hours per month.

Work injury identification rescue cannot exceed 48 hours

During working hours and at work, death from sudden illness or death after being rescued within 48 hours is considered a work-related injury.

If an employee suffers from accidents or suffers from occupational diseases and needs to suspend work for work-related injuries and medical treatment, the original wages and benefits will remain unchanged during the period of suspension of work and salaries, and the unit will pay monthly.

The period of suspension of work is generally not more than 12 months. If the injury is serious or the situation is special, it may be extended by the municipal-level labor ability appraisal committee of the district, but the extension may not exceed 12 months.

 Your maximum medical leave cannot exceed 24 months

When an enterprise employee needs to stop working for medical treatment due to illness, he will be given a medical period of 3 months to 24 months according to the actual working years at his/her company or total years of employment.

If the actual years of employment are less than 10 years, but actual working years in his/her company less than 5 years, you can enjoy 3 months medical treatment. If more than 5 years, you can enjoy 6 months medical treatment.

  1. Employees who work at a company for less than 5 year but total years of employment  are more than 10 years, then you can enjoy 6 months of medical treatment;

  2. More than 5 years but less than 10 years, you can enjoy 6 months of medical treatment;

  3. Between 10-15 years at the company allow you to enjoy 12 months of medical treatment;

  4. More than 20 years at the company and you can enjoy 24 months of medical treatment.

Annual leave with salary

1. Employees who work at a company for more than 1 year but less than 10 years can enjoy 5 days of annual leave with full salary;

2. 10 days annual leave with salary for employees working for more than 10 years but less than 20 years;

3. 15 days for those working for more than 20 years.

-- Article 3 of the Regulations on the Annual Leave of Workers with Payrolls of the State Council

After the employee has worked for one year, he can enjoy paid annual leave.

Labor arbitration must be filed within 60 days

Anyone who requests labor arbitration shall file the arbitration to the Labor Dispute Committee within 60 days from the date the dispute occurred. 

The period of limitation for the application for arbitration of labor disputes is one year. 

-- The Labor Dispute Mediation and Arbitration Law

The arbitration period shall be calculated from the date that applicant found their right was infringed.

Therefore, employees should claim for their legal right in time.

If one overstays the visa for a significant period, another period of stay shall be no more than 15 days

Aliens overstaying the visa or residence permit for a short period will be given a warning and be required to pay a fine. Usually, the penalty is CNY500 per day, not to exceed CNY10,000.

If one overstays the visa for a significant period, usually over one month,he/she might be put into a detention camp for 5 to 15 days and repatriated to his home country. It's possible they will be blacklisted, which will affect re-entry to China, and they may be prohibited from entering the country for ten years. In addition to this, it might also influence one's visa application(s) for other countries.

For those foreigners who have incurred detention, they should pay the fine at the designated bank, then go through the detention formalities at the local public security department. Another period of stay shall be no more than 15 days.

Author: Suki

Editor: Crystal H


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