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19 February 2009

Labor Protection Act, (No. 2), B.E. 2551

The Labor Protection Act, (No. 2), B.E. 2551, which came into force on 28 May 2008, provides the following additional protections for employees:

1.  Where an employer fails to return an employee's monetary security, to pay an employee wages, including overtime pay or holiday pay, or to pay employees certain other compensation, in each case, within the time period required by law, the employer is required to pay interest on such late payments at the rate of 15% per year.

2.  Employers are prohibited from requiring employees to provide performance guarantees or guarantees against damage except in the case where the work is financial in nature or relates to property for which an employee is responsible and which may damage the employer and, in each case, is otherwise in accordance with the rules set forth by the Minister of Labor.

3.  Debts owed by an employer in respect of amounts payable to employees under the Labor Protection Act, B.E. 2541, as amended, or to the Employee Support Fund have the same rank in bankruptcy as tax and duty charges under the Civil and Commercial Code.

4.  If a person or entity uses another person or entity to obtain workers, but such other person or entity is not in the business of supplying labor or workers, then such first person or entity will be deemed to be the employer for purposes of the Labor Protection Act, B.E. 2541, as amended, and will be required to treat such employees on a nondiscriminatory basis as compared to other employees doing the same kind of work.

5.  Employment agreements that are excessively in favor of the employer will be enforceable only to the extent such enforcement would be equitable.  Employment agreements with a term will terminate at the end of such term without the need for advanced notice.  If an employment agreement does not specify a term, then it may be terminated by either the employer or employee with one payment period's advanced written notice.

6.  Employers and those with supervisory or management authority will be prohibited from sexually molesting or threatening employees.

7.  Working hours shall not exceed 8 hours per day or 48 hours per week (or 7 hours per day and 42 hours per week for dangerous work).  If a working day is shorter than 8 hours, then a work day may be extended to 9 hours by mutual agreement, but the work week shall not exceed 48 hours per week.  Work in excess of 8 hours per day shall be paid at least at one and one-half times the normal rate.

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