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Overview of Business in Thailand

:: Import and Export Regulations
:: Labour Regulations
:: Workers Compensation
:: The Board of Investment (BOI
:: Factory Licensing & Regulations
:: Factory Operations & Expansion
:: Intellectual Property
:: Trademark Protection
:: Trademark Registration

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Business in Thailand - Workers Compensation

The Compensation Act prescribes, that an employer must provide the necessary compensation benefits for employees who suffer injury or illness or who die as a result or in the performance of their work at the rates prescribed be law.

The compensation benefits can be grouped into 4 categories:

:: The compensation benefits;
:: The medical expenses;
:: The work rehabilitation expenses;
:: The funeral expenses.

The payment of compensation benefits must be made in accordance with the criteria and rates prescribed by law depending on the seriousness of the case. In general, the compensation amount must be paid monthly at the rate of 60 percent of the monthly wages of the employee but not lower than 2,000 Baht and not exceeding 9,000 Baht a month.

Actual and necessary medical expenses must be paid, but not exceeding 35,000 Baht for normal cases and 50,000 Baht for serious injuries.

The work rehabilitation expenses must be paid as necessary, according to the criteria procedures and rates prescribed by law, but not exceeding 20,000 Baht.

In the case of death, funeral expenses must be paid at a minimum amount equal to 100 times of the minimum daily wage rate prescribed by law.

Minimum Wages
These regulations apply to all businesses and rates depend on the location of the workplace. The minimum wage per day effective January 1, 1998 is:

:: 162 Baht for Bangkok, Nakhon Pathom, Nontaburi, Pathum Thani, Phuket, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon;
:: 140 Baht for Chonburi, Chiang Mai, Nakhon Ratchasima, Phang-nga and Ranong;
:: 130 Baht for all other areas.

Social Security
The Social Security Act requires that all employers with 10 or more employees withhold Social Security contributions from the monthly wages of each employee.

The maximum monthly wage base which the rates are applied to must not exceed 15,000 Baht. The employer is required to match the contribution from the employee. Both contributions must be remitted to the Social Security Office within the 15th day of the following month.

Employees with Social Security registration may file claims for compensation in case of injury or illness, disability or death, which is not due to the performance of their work, and for cases of child delivery, child welfare, old age pension and unemployment.

Legal Implications of Labour Management
In general, Thai labour laws provide for considerable freedom in managing labour. In many countries, it is not legal to discriminate on the basis of age or sex. Perusal of personnel ads in Thai newspapers finds employers narrowly defining their needs, for example: "The successful candidate will be male, under 35 years of age, not a member of a labour union, and at least 150 cm in height, etc."

Furthermore, the government doesn't interfere with a company's retrenchment policy when economic conditions necessitate cutbacks. There is no "first in, last out" requirement in Thailand.

Similarly, Thai employers have the right to transfer employees to other work locations, provided the transfer is not ordered with the exclusive intent to create hardship on the employee. Refusal to transfer is a legal cause for dismissal of the employee.

Employee Records
An employer with 10 or more regular employees is required to establish written rules and regulations governing work performance in Thai language. The regulations must be displayed on the work premises within 15 days of the date on which the number of employees has reached 10 or more.

An employer with 10 or more regular employees is also required to maintain an employee register in Thai language with documents pertaining to the payment of wages, overtime, holiday work, etc.

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