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Tips for Hiring Domestic Helper in Hong Kong

In Hong Kong, lots of families hire foreign domestic helpers to take care of children or the elderly and do housework, so that working parents can go to work with less worry.

Although hiring foreign domestic helpers is very common in Hong Kong, you may still hear some unpleasant incidents. Here are some points for employers to know what to pay attention to when hiring a foreign domestic helper.

Requirements to Hire Domestic Workers in Hong Kong

If you want to hire a foreign domestic helper in Hong Kong, you have to meet certain income requirements and conditions to ensure that you can afford their salaries. According to the Laws of Hong Kong, the applicant’s total family income must not be less than HKD 180,000 per annum, meaning not less than HKD 15,000 per month. Every employer has to submit the required supporting documents to the Immigration Department, including tax bills, bank books, income records, etc.

Direct Hire or via Employment Agency?

Mostly, people hire foreign domestic helpers through foreign domestic helper agencies, but people can also hire particular foreign domestic helpers directly (Direct Hire). So, which way is better?

Some employers do not want to find an unfamiliar foreign domestic helper through the agency but hire a foreign domestic helper who has worked for them before, or someone referred by friends. However, employers need to handle multiple procedures on their own, or they can seek the help of licensed parties to handle them on their behalf. However, the service scopes and costs may not be transparent, and it may cost more time and money.

On the contrary, looking for an agency can reduce a lot of troubles and handle all the employment procedures for you in one go. The package fee includes all procedures and charges such as entry visas, immigrations, standard employment contracts, health checkups, etc. However, the service scopes and charges offered by each agency are different. Remember to identify the service details clearly to avoid any unpleasant incidents in the future.

Salary and Allowance for Domestic Workers

According to the Government Notice in 2020, the minimum salary of foreign domestic helpers remains at HK$4,630. The payment methods of foreign domestic helpers’ salaries include cheque, bank transfer or cash, and employers have to obtain the consent of their foreign domestic helpers. Also, records should be kept for each payment. If the payment is made by cheques and bank transfers, there are bank records; if the payment is made in cash, it is best for both parties to record and sign to confirm.  

In terms of food allowance, employers can provide free meals, or pay no less than HK$1,121 to foreign domestic helpers. When foreign domestic helpers are sick or injured during the contract period, employers have to bear their medical expenses. Therefore, before hiring a foreign domestic helper in Hong Kong, you have to first understand the basic expenses required and see whether you can afford to hire a foreign domestic helper. 

Importance of Domestic Worker Insurance

In addition to the daily expenses mentioned above, it is compulsory to purchase insurance for the foreign domestic helper. The most basic one is to purchase Employees’ Compensation Insurance, but the insurance coverage may not be sufficient. AIG Domestic Worker Insurance is comprehensive and flexible, providing 3 different insurance plans that cover hospitalization & surgical expenses, personal accidents (accidental death & dismemberment; emergency medical expenses), dental and clinical expenses, etc. Employers can choose suitable plans according to different needs to protect the interests of both parties.

Would you like to know more about AIG Domestic Worker Insurance? Click here and learn more.