Contact Us | Home
RECENT NEWS
Labour Tribunal Calendar May 2013
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education invites open tenders for the: CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW TWO STOREY TWELVE CLASSROOM BLOCK AT ONA GLINTON PRIMARY SCHOOL – GRAND TURK.
Approved Work Permits & Letters up to March 2013
 
 
FAQs

Is there a standard format of an Employment Contract?

Yes, there is a standard fomat, below is an templete of an Contract of Employment.

Contract of Employment

THIS AGREEMENT made this     day of    ,  

Between           ,

whose address is   ,    , Turks and Caicos Islands (the

Employer),

And           ,

of                                ,    , Turks and Caicos Islands, (the Employee).


Whereas:
i. The Employer is the proprietor of the    known as;
,
ii. The Employer is desirous of employing  (a) (an)     ;
iii. The Employee has experience in the areas of expertise desired by the Employer;


THIS CONTRACT BEGINS on the   day of  

CONTINUOUS EMPLOYMENT BEGIN on the  day of  

IT IS AGREED AS FOLLOWS:

1. The wages/salary is    per   , to be paid by cheque in arrears.

2. Work schedule is as directed by     , who is the immediate supervisor for all purposes of this agreement. If the employee is dissatisfied with any disciplinary decision of   relative disciplinary maters, the employee may refer all such questions to   .

3. Hours of operation of the     are from        A.M. to      P.M.,

but as the Employee is to be part of the management of the    , the Employee must make himself/herself available outside of the normal hours of operation of the      as may be reasonably necessary to complete any particular task as may be directed by the     from time to time. 


4. Vacation of      weeks per year will accrue and will be taken during the months of       ,

5. Vacation pay will be calculated based on a 4 / 4.333 -week month.

6. If the Employee is scheduled to work on a Public Holiday then (he) (she) will be paid                         for the hours worked on that date.

7. The Employee is entitled to    days paid sick leave per year, provided that after the    consecutive sick day (he) (she) produces to the Employer a valid medical certificate indicating a doctor’s opinion that (he) (she) should not work or is incapable of carrying out (his) (her) particular functions.

8. Compassionate leave will be   days.

9. Special requests for other days off must be in writing, addressed to    , and submitted at least       week/days in advance of the particular day requested.

10. The employment contemplated under this agreement is not pensionable.

11. This agreement is effective from the    day of    and is for a term of two years in the first instance, but renewable by mutual agreement of the parties.

12. The first     of the term will be a probationary period and the employer may terminate this agreement during that period if the employee, for whatever reason, fails to meet the employer’s expectations.

13. Either party may terminate this contract giving the other     notice of intention to terminate        , or  

14. The Employee is employed as (a) (an)     . (He) (She) is to be generally responsible for the matters listed in the schedule to this Agreement.

15. Other provisions:

 


16. Each of the following actions taken by the Employee, independent of the others, is agreed to be cause for immediate dismissal of the Employee:

A) Drinking Alcohol or using any other mind-altering substance while on the job.
B) Negligence, irresponsibility or recklessness while on the job.
C) Theft of property belonging to the Employer, its clients, staff or guests.
D) Unauthorized divulgence of the Employer’s confidential information.

17. Each of the following actions taken by the Employer, independent of the others, is agreed to be the equivalent of unfair dismissal:

A) Abusive behaviour
B) Unnecessarily exposing the Employee to physical danger
C) Unreasonably withholding or negligently omitting to allow the Employee opportunities for further training.


18. The Employee may also be dismissed for minor misconduct after three (3) written warnings.

19. The Employee acknowledges receipt of the staff manual and code of conduct issued by the Employer.


The address of the Inspector for this workplace is:     

 

 

 

 

Signed by the Employer        


Signed by the Employee


Witness

Date

What are the 16 point to review when you are given an employment contract?
For reviewing employment contracts Section 5 Employment Ordiance 2004.
1. Identity of Parties
2. Date employment began
3. Date 'continuous employment' began
4. Scale or rate of pay ($5.00 or more)
5. Payment interval (one month or less)
6. Hours of work (44 or less - overtime)
7. Vacations (2 weeks or more)
8. Public Holidays (double time)
9. Sickness (12 days)
10. Pensions
11. Notice ( <1 mth 1 dy; > 1mths but < 1 yr 2 wks; 1-5 yrs 1 mth 5 yres 2 mths)
12. Duties
13. Other condtions agreed
14. Discipline - (Procedures)
15. Appeal from discipliary action - (Person)
16. Apply to redress grievance - (Person & Procedure) 
Section 5 'Employer shall send copy to Labour Comissioner on request.'
Section 29 (2) Penalty 31 (4)
What is the Procedure for bringing a complaint to the Labour Tribunal?
Labour Dispute Complaints:
The relevant information for the investion and settlement of Labour dispute complaints are taken at interviews with the complainants at the Department of Labour in a confidential envirnment by a designated Labour Inspector. 
The Inspector shall:
  • Record the relevant information on the Labour Dispute Complaint Form (Form I at Annex). This form is confidential Goverment property;
  • Review the information provided by the complaint, check relevant and applicable law, policies and standards and prepare thoroughly for the interviews and investigation before inviting both parties to call at the Department of Labour;
  • Invite within one week, the employer/employer's representative, and the complainant to the Department of Labour to discuss the complaint with the view to settlement strictly in keeping with the law; ( this must be done in a professional way, and in a confidential environment, normally in separate meetings to avoid confrontations)
  • Normally complete the investigation within 21 days of recieving eachy complaint; and
  • Refer the labour dispute complaint to the Comissioner, if for any reason the Inspector cannot resolve the matter within 21 days;

The Comissioner shall:

 

  • Review the matter and give such directions and advie to the parties in accordance with the law with a view od settlement within 7 days;
  • Refer the matter to the Labour Tribunal for adjudication if is not resolved with the 7 days.

For Further information contact the Labour Tribunal Office, located Downtown Butterfield Square, Providenciales

Telephone : (649) 946- 8519 Fax: (649) 946-8523

Office hours Monday - Thursday 8:00am - 4:30pm

Friday 8:00am - 4:00pm

 

What are that standard prodcedure for dismissal or taking disciplinary action against the employee?
The Standard Procedural Requirements are as followed:-
Step 1: Statement of grounds for action and invitation to meeting
(1)         The employer must set out in writing the employee's alleged conduct or characteristics, or other circumstances, which lead him to contemplate dismissing or taking disciplinary action against the employee.
(2)         The employer must send the statment or a copy of it to the employee and invite the employee to attend a meeting to discuss the matter.
Step 2: Meeting
(1)        The meeting must take place before action is taken, except in the case where the disciplinary action consists of suspension.
(2)       The meeting must not take place unless-
             (a) The employer has formed the employee what the basis was for including in the statment under para. 1(1) the grounds or grounds given in it, and
              (b) The employee has had a resonable opportunity to consider his response to that information.
(3)        The employee must take all reasonable steps to attend the meeting.
(4)       After the meeting, the employer must inform the employee of his decision and notify him of the right to appeal against the decision if he is not satisfied with it.
Step 3: Appeal
(1)        If the employee does wish to appeal, he must inform the employer.
(2)      If the employee informs the employer of his wish to appeal, the employer must invite him to attend a further meeting.
(3)      The employer must take all reasonable steps to attend the meetings.
(4)      The appeal meeting need not to take place before the dismissal or disciplinary actions take effect.
(5)      After the appeal meeting, the employer must inform the employee of his final decision.
Resource: Industrial Relations Law Reports, Page 76/ Printed by Hobbs the Printers Ltd. IBN 1 405-70779-8 2005
Do Belongers need to have employment contracts?
Yes. Every person who provides service to an employer should have an employment contract.
 

The Department of Labour have been encouraging persons to come in and register with the Department why should I register my skills?
For a variety of reasons here are some of them:
  • That we might have statistics to help the Department in its planning to meet manpower needs now and in the future;
  • To assist the Department in giving you better counsel regarding skill availability and areas of need in our labour market;
  • That government, Education Department, and Scholarship Board have information to base their human resource development decisions on;
  • More than 75% of our economically active population is on work permit – The Department is constantly seeking qualified Belongers - you may land a better career opportunity than the one you have.
I want to employ someone on a work permit, what do I need to do?
That is only possible where there is no suitably qualified and available Belonger to fill the position. The employer must make every effort to recruit a Belonger: that includes but can in no way be limited to advertising the position in at least two successive issues of a newspaper circulating within the Islands. If no suitably qualified Belonger is available, the employer may then search outside the Islands. The employer must notify the Commissioner of his intention to recruit a non-Belonger at least 14 days before making an application and send a copy of the agreed Employment Contract to the Commissioner and to the recruit before the recruit leaves his/her country of residence for the Islands. The new recruit should not begin work until he/she has a Work Permit in hand.
 
What ought to be included in an employment contract?
Part II of the Employment Ordinance deals with Particulars of Terms of Employment. It describes two essential documents: the Employment Contract and the Itemised Pay Statement. Section 5 requires that 16 particulars be included in the Employment Contract and section 14 requires that 5 particulars be included in the Itemised Pay Statement. These particulars are to be set out in such detail as to ensure that a third party who picks up any of the documents will be able to ascertain exactly what the worker is entitled to and what is/was required of him.
 
What if my employees refuse to sign their employment contract?
Where employees have been working for longer than the probationary period and a question arises regarding the employment contract either partner may cause that question to be referred to the Labour Tribunal who may determine the particulars that ought to have been and may confirm, amend or substitute particulars.
 
How old must a person be who provides services to an employer?
Any person of the age of 16 years or more may enter into an employment contract. There is no upper age limit. A person under the age of 16 may enter into an employment contract with the written consent of his/her parent or guardian or if none exist, with the written consent of the commissioner.
 
Do I have to provide Employment Contracts and Itemised Pay Statements to students I employ during holidays from school?
No. Part II of the Employment Ordinance does not apply to employment for specified periods of less than four weeks, to high school students employed for six weeks or to members of the employer’s immediate family.
 
What recourse do I have against an employer who always pays me late?
Payday shall be at regular intervals of not more than one month and wages or salary shall be paid during normal working hours, at or near the employee’s usual place of work. Failure to do so constitutes an offense. Section 22 provides for a fine of $5,000 and $10,000 for a subsequent, similar, offence.
 
My employer gave me notice of termination but still has not paid me long after the date of termination.
Payment becomes due when the condition entitling the payment arise and shall be payable as wages or salary in respect to manner, time and place of payment. (on payday, during normal working hours, at or near employee’s usual place of employment).  The date notice was given is called the “material date;” the date notice expires is called the “effective date.” Where the employer allows both the effective date and payday to pass without paying sums owed the “effective date” is no longer considered the “effective date.” The date the employer actually pays becomes the new “effective date.” The employer should pay, wages, vacation, etc. for normal hours between the old and new “effective date” as if the worker actually came to work during that period.
 
What would happen in the case where the employment contract I signed agreed six paid sick days per year because I did not know that the Employment Order 1994 provides for 12 paid sick days per year?
If an employment contract provides for less payment to the worker than the minimum specified by the Order then the effect shall be as if the conditions specified in the Order were substituted for those in the employment contract.
 
As an employer what records am I required to keep regarding my employees?
The employer shall keep all the records necessary to show his/her compliance, in the last three years, with any Ordinance relating to employment e.g. the National Insurance Ordinance, Hotel and Restaurants (Service Charges) Ordinance 2003, Employment Ordinance 2004, etc. That includes but is not limited to: payroll, public holidays, vacation time, hours worked, sick leave, overtime, etc.
 
Who has the right to demand my employment records?
Any person who is appointed an Inspector under section 31 of the Employment Ordinance 2004 may enter business premises and demand those records or may require the information to be sent to him/her. In the case of Service Charges, any other person authorized to do so by the Minister of Finance and any of that employer’s employees who are entitled to Service Charges.
 
Suppose an employer or his/her agents provide the Inspectors information that is false or untrue?
If a person refuses or willfully neglects to furnish information lawfully required by an Inspector he/she is liable on conviction to a fine of $10,000. If a person purporting to comply, furnishes information he/she knows to be false he/she is liable on conviction to a fine of $10,000. If a person willfully removes or destroys any record or source of information with intent to avoid or obstruct an Inspector carrying out duties he/she is liable on conviction to a fine of $25,000 and $50,000 for a subsequent, similar, offence.
 
How do International Labour Standards affect employment relationships in Turks and Caicos?
The International Labour Organization has agreed to recognize Turks and Caicos as a new territory of the United Kingdom joining as of November 2004. As a result of membership in the organization the 8 Fundamental Conventions cited by the 1998 Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work apply to Turks and Caicos.
 
The International Labour Organization (ILO) supervises the application of Standards by requiring each of its members to report to the International Labour Conference (ILC) on the position of its laws and practice regarding those principles contained in the Standards. The ILC is held at United Nations Headquarters, Geneva, from late May to early June each year.
 
The Employment Ordinance 2004 incorporates as part of its objectives two of the Fundamental Conventions: the 1951 Convention 100 on Equal Remuneration and the 1958 Convention 111 on Discrimination in Employment and Occupation. The Conventions should inform law and practice in member states.
 
Your department holds itself out to be against discrimination yet you discriminate in favour of Belongers against non-Beloners. How do you justify that?
Subsection 2 of sections 38 and 44 of the Employment Ordinance 2004, provides that preference for a Belonger as regards access to or maintenance of employment or as regards training, is not discrimination or unfair under the Ordinance.
 
Explain some valid reasons for termination of employment.
There are only 4 valid reasons for which an employer may terminate an employee’s employment, they are: conduct on the job; capability to perform requirements of the job; redundancy; and illegality.
  • Conduct that is reason for termination has been divided into two: misconduct and serious misconduct. Where there has been serious misconduct that has a detrimental effect on the business, the termination may be without notice.
  • Before termination based on inability to perform, the employer must warn the employee and give: instructions on how the employee may perform the duties satisfactorily and time to correct the unsatisfactory performance.
  • Where positions become redundant the employer shall, as soon as possible, inform and consult with his/her employees regarding measures that might be taken to minimize the adverse effects of the situation.
  • Where it is or becomes illegal for either the employer or worker to continue the employment relationship then the relationship must be terminated. (Loss of licenses or work permit, etc.)
 
Why should I bring my dispute to the Department of Labour before going to the Labour Tribunal?
The employment relationship is as basic as family relationships and it affects us how and where we live as do family relationships. Therefore, as much as we want to maintain family relationships we want also to maintain the employment relationship because loss of the relationship has the potential to bring hardship.
 
The Department’s first duty is to facilitate healing of the relationship, nurture the relationship even develop the relationship. The power to make decisions remains with the partners in the relationship. They can agree as to the nature of their future relationship designing and creating a relationship that suits them both.
 
At the Labour Tribunal the partners no longer hold the power to make decisions and to craft their own relationship. That power is now with the Tribunal who know and understand so little about the partners’ relationship. They know the law and will seek to craft the relationship to fit the law rather than the partners.
 
I operate an Employment Agency what are my responsibilities to my clients and employees?
Basically a private employment agency provides three distinct groups of services:
(a) services for matching offers of and applications for employment, without the private employment agency becoming a party to the employment relationships which may arise therefrom;
(b) services consisting of employing workers with a view to making them available to a third party, who assigns their tasks and supervises the execution of these tasks;
(c) other services relating to job-seeking, e.g. training, resume writing, preparation for job interview, etc.
 
The Private Employment Agency should not charge workers directly or indirectly for services in group (a) or (b). Under the Employment Ordinance 2004, Agents are responsible to workers they place or provide to user enterprises for their protection: in the field of occupational safety and health, their right to collective bargaining, matters regarding their access to training and their rights under any Ordinance relating to employment. (vacation and rest periods, time off for civic responsibilities, etc).