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HK govt keeps relaxed rules on contract extensions, home leaves, but warn of 'job hopping'

29 March 2021

By The SUN 

Home leave requirement for FDHs has been relaxed for now

The Hong Kong government has extended two measures meant to help foreign domestic helpers and employers cope with continuing travel restrictions brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a statement issued today, Mar 29, the government said that a three-month extension will again be allowed for all FDH contracts that are expiring on or before Jun 30 this year.


In addition, FDHs who are still unable to return to their places of origin for their home leave despite a one-year allowance given them by the Immigration Department, may now apply for a further extension until the end of their two-year contract.

The statement reminded both FDHs and their employers that all applications to be made in line with the relaxed restrictions should be subject to their mutual agreement.


It also said that applications for further extension of contracts that had already been extended previously will not be considered. This means that employers who have already availed of the three-month extension should either renew the contract of their current FDHs or let them go.

“Based on the experience from the previous flexibility arrangements, a three-month extended period could allow sufficient time for employers to arrange their newly hired FDHs to come to Hong Kong,” said the statement.

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“If a newly hired FDH cannot be arranged to come to Hong Kong within the three-month extended period and the employer needs to continue to employ his/her FDH beyond the three-month extended period, the employer should apply for a contract renewal with the existing FDH.”

As for the requirement for FDHs to take a home leave at the end of each two-year contract period, the statement said the prevailing practice was to allow an extension of only a year.


But because of the continuing pandemic, the government has decided to further allow FDHs to defer returning to their home countries until the end of their contract.

FDHs who had already been granted extensions of stay in line with the government announcements on Mar 21, Jun 30, Sept 30 and Dec 30 may still apply to Immigration for permission to remain in Hong Kong “until the end of their contract,” said the statement.


However, it added that the requirement for FDHs to return to their place of origin continues to be in place.

The govt statement also warned against 'job hopping'

Meanwhile, the statement said that the Labour and Immigration Departments will continue to take “proactive” steps to combat job-hopping by certain FDHs.

The measures include an investigation by the LD into complaints about employment agencies who allegedly induce FDHs to job-hop.

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The statement said the LD has issued letters to all placement agencies for FDHs to remind them not to engage in such “improper business practices” but did not mention any sanctions being made on anyone.

“The ImmD will continue to step up efforts to combat "job-hopping" by FDHs rigorously. For suspected "job-hopping" cases, the ImmD will refuse the employment visa applications concerned and require the applicants to leave Hong Kong,” said the statement.



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