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gffgold
31-07-10, 13:02
I keep hearing conflicting theories about expat employees being legally entitled to a 13th month bonus payment. Some say this is a legal requirement, others argue equally plausibly that it is just a fairly standard part of the package like health assurance.

Anyone know the definitive answer?

atlantis
05-08-10, 08:54
If by 13th month you are refering to the Tunjangan Hari Raya, then it should apply to any worker, Indonesian or foreigner. The law makes absolutely no distinction of nationality ("Pekerja adalah tenaga kerja yang bekerja pada Pengusaha dengan menerima upah"). Any worker with more than 3 months seniority in a comapny is eligible for the payment of THR which is calculated like this:
- 1 month of salary for any woirker with 12 months+ seniority in the company.
- THR will be proportional to the seniority for those who have a seniority in between 3 to 12 months.

From what I remenber from the law:
THR has to be paid in one time a week before the main religious holiday (Idul Fitri, hari natal...etc) of the worker's religion, unless agreed otherwise by the employer and the employee. Also, part of the THR (I think that it is 25% or 33%, can't remenber) can be substitued, with the agreement of the worker, by other means than money (ex: obat, voucher belanja...etc). Anything regulating it should be written in the working contract.

Having the Depnakertrans' Cerbčres moving for an expat's rights may be good fun though. Expats are entitled to it but rarely they will get it.

Morty
05-08-10, 09:11
I know this is not paid in my company. I have only just started, but a colleague who is a 30 year veteran of Indonesia pointed it out in a meeting recently. The Human Resources Manager was quite taken aback by it. He said it certainly did not apply to expats. The point was not pressed, and no more was ever heard about it. Later my colleague said he knew that it would never be paid, but he had wanted to educate people about the law.

kingwilly
05-08-10, 09:51
A friend of mine has a business, they have factory contracts which state that THR will be paid monthly over a 12 month period. (ie higher pay every month, but no 13th payment). Nearly every year some dickhead complains about not getting their THR, even though it is written in the contract.

I wonder if it is worth the grief. (but I understand where he is coming from)

kingwilly
05-08-10, 09:52
I know this is not paid in my company. I have only just started, but a colleague who is a 30 year veteran of Indonesia pointed it out in a meeting recently. The Human Resources Manager was quite taken aback by it. He said it certainly did not apply to expats. The point was not pressed, and no more was ever heard about it. Later my colleague said he knew that it would never be paid, but he had wanted to educate people about the law.

I suppose that they could argue that the end of contract bonuses and/or Christmas bonus' account for this....

akutonpa1
08-08-10, 08:47
Go to http://www.nakertrans.go.id/? Look for Permenaker Nomor :PER-04/MEN/1994 Tentang Tunjangan Hari Raya Keagamaan (http://www.nakertrans.go.id/perundangan.html,1,230,7)
Pasal 1 C refers to the post by Atlantis and I believe Pasal 2 is about payment. I also called Manpower, quoting from the document above and asked if it included expats. They said it did. I then went to HRD, again referring to the document above.They said they would discuss it at the next board meeting. I guess that is progress.

[/URL]


[URL="http://www.nakertrans.go.id/perundangan.html,1,230,7"] (http://www.nakertrans.go.id/perundangan.html,1,230,7)

Gratilla
08-08-10, 09:20
I've been involved (as an observer) in such board meetings in the past. The consensus was that Expats were "already overpaid" and that the official line would be that the 13th month was "already included" in their monthly salaries as it would be "unfair" to only pay pro rata for the months worked for those on a 1 year contract (renewable) ie almost everyone.

Disclaimer: These opinions may not necessarily be universally held.

SamanthaB
10-01-11, 14:41
My husband's employer paid him a 13th salary this December. He even asked them about it, just to make sure it was all on the up-and-up, before we spent it. His boss was like, "Yes, of course! You get the same bonus that all of the other teachers get!" We suspected he might get a bonus, since he gets all of the other bonuses that the teachers do (attendance bonuses, etc...) and it had been mentioned in passing a few times. Despite that, we didn't want to count our chickens before they hatched so, from a financial standpoint, the income was unplanned. Since it was basically 'free' money, I let my husband spend it on the giant flat-screen TV he'd been lusting after. Needless to say, the bonus money is long gone.

We were singing the praises of his boss, how kind and generous and fair and law-abiding she was, up until this morning. See, on Friday I mentioned in passing to a colleague that my husband got a bonus from his employer but that our employer didn't bonus me. They insisted that must have been a mistake and that I should just talk to our HR person, because I was most def entitled to a 13th salary as well. I shot my HR person an email and this morning I heard back from them. Not only did they claim that in no way, shape, or form was I entitled to a bonus, but they also claimed that they spoke to my husband's employer regarding his bonus and that it was a 'mistake'.

Apparently, his employer 'forgot' that we have an end-of-contract flight reimbursement/relocation bonus written into our employment agreement. It's only USD$1,500, which is just about exactly the amount of money that a round-trip ticket to/from the States costs during the summer. In fact, they're often MORE expensive than that, meaning that we could still end up out-of-pocketing money on our plane tickets-- not to mention the relocation/moving costs. (We're not moving back to the States in June, but that's neither here nor there. The point is we came from the States at our own expense and the employer should give us money to get home-- and reimburse us for the cost of getting to Indonesia. How we actually spend that money isn't really any of their concern.)

Now my husband's employer is claiming that she 'forgot' about the flight money and that she didn't 'budget' for 'two bonuses'. (A claim I find hard to believe, since there were extensive conversations about the dollar amount of the flight reimbursement during our contract negotiations. There's no way anyone 'forgot' about that.) She also claimed that since she gave him the 13th salary, she's not giving him the end-of-contract flight money. She said that it wasn't until my employer called to find out if my claim (that Ry got bonused) was true and reminded her about our end-of-contract 'bonus' (it's not really a bonus, it's a refund) that she realized the 'mistake' she'd made.

I call total BS. This screws us in so many ways. First, we ASKED about the money-- it was made clear that it was bonus money, so we spent it. It's gone. Now we're suddenly finding out that we're not going to get $1,500 that we'd counted on-- even though we aren't moving back to the States with that money, that money had been a part of our budgeting and this new development turns our next few months upside-down. If we knew that the money was his flight bonus, we never would have spent it-- especially not so frivolously!

Plus, whether or not it's actually done, it IS the law that all employees in Indonesia-- foreigner or Indonesian-- receive a 13th salary. I don't care to get into a debate about whether expat employees already earn enough-- in my book, that's a moot point, especially since I know several professional Indonesians who earn FAR more than my teacher salary and get all sorts of other perks, like cars+drivers, generous vacation time, health insurance, and (of course!) a 13th salary. If you're going to argue that expats 'already make enough', then you also need to argue the same about any middle-to-upper management Indonesian. Unless you're prepared to argue that only people in low-level jobs, like nannies, pembantus, sopirs, and casiers, should get bonused, I don't want to hear it.

So... What would you do if you were me? We have two issues. Issue one (the lesser issue) is the issue of my employer not bonusing me, despite it being required by law. Trying to get that enforced is probably going to be absolutely impossible, I know. Issue two (the larger issue) is the issue of my husband's 13th salary suddenly being turned into his flight reimbursement and the claim that he won't be getting any money at the end of his contract.

It would probably be pretty easy to fight this new development and insist on the flight money-- the money he was given in December is OBVIOUSLY a 13th salary. The amount is NOT the same as the USD$1,500 flight reimbursement and it's *exactly* the amount that a prorated 13th salary would be. Plus, they're contractually bound to give him the flight money. To argue it, they'd have to claim that they 'accidentally' gave him the 13th salary-- the same money that they're obligated by law to give him. It might take some fighting, but I'm sure we could win that battle.

The real question is, though, is it worth it? At this point, there's no way in hell that we're signing another contract with them. There are too many schools looking for too many teachers-- no reason to stick around if there's any 'funny business'. At this point, we're just gritting our teeth and dealing with it because we've got six months left and no secure job offer for next school year.

KW, I'd especially like to hear from you, since I think we might work at the same family of schools. (A little birdy told me so.) Any other nat+ and international school teachers should feel free to chime in, too. Did you get a Christmas bonus? Even if it wasn't a 13th salary, did you get anything? What about end-of-contract? Is it just flight money or is it a bonus + flight?

Elithium
10-01-11, 15:13
SamanthaB, from my experience it's an either/or thing. Either you get the plane ticket OR the bonus, but not both. That's how it is at where I work.

I signed my last contract agreeing to neither bonuses though so I don't think it's mandatory if it's stipulated otherwise in your contract. However, you need to read your contract and see if it is stipulated in the contract.

Puspawarna
10-01-11, 15:56
You might want to try reaching KW by PM ... he has not posted since being reinstated after his temporary ban.

Sorry about your troubles.

phiss
10-01-11, 16:05
In every school I have worked at, the expat employees get return air ticket reimbursement + one month bonus payment at end of contract (which is equivalent to thirteenth month bonus). Some schools have tried to tie this into a 'performance bonus', but have quickly been voted down when the law was pointed out to them.

Gratilla
10-01-11, 16:07
You're either:

a) An employee and treated as such, or

b) A contractor and entitled to whatever is agreed to in your contract.

Contractor? What does your contract say?

SamanthaB
11-01-11, 16:05
Sorry, in my long-winded rant I forgot to add a few things:

For most teachers, even those already located in-country, an annual (or bi-annual) plane ticket to their home country is an automatic. Also fairly standard (at least at 'proper' schools, language school are a different beast) is an annual bonus, usually equal to one month of wages, generally paid at the end of contract but sometimes paid during the holidays.

Even if the plane ticket home wasn't an automatic, it would have been in our case-- we left our first Indonesian contract 9 months in to take the positions with our current employers. We signed a longer-than-normal contract and forfeited our right to our initial flight reimbursement with the express understanding that, at the end of our new contract with our new employer, we would receive $1,500 per person as flight reimbursement money. There was extensive negotiation around this point and the school representatives were/are well aware of how important that money was/is to us.

It should further be noted that the flight money is *not* a 'bonus'-- it's a reimbursement for money that we already spent, the money that it cost us to move to Indonesia in the first place, which we did out of pocket. (Like I said, that money would have been repayed to us last year by our original employer, but we broke that contract to work for our current school. When we broke the contract we lost the reimbursement, something that our new employer guaranteed to pay us at the end of the new contract.)

In our contract, we are described as employees-- NOT contracted individuals. We are sponsored as employees of our school. As mandated by our school's head office, our contract is *exactly* the same as the contracts for the local teachers. The only difference is the verbiage that was added to address immigration, housing, etc... And I waived my right to paid maternity leave. Everything else is the same. In none of the contracts-- ours or the regular teachers-- does it mention the 13th month. I think it's just assumed.

In all honesty, had my husband *not* received a December bonus, we never would have brought it up, even though I'd seen this thread long ago and knew that we were technically legally entitled to one. It's the last-minute switcharoo they're trying to pull, wherein not only do I NOT get a 13th month, but now my husband doesn't get his flight money, that's pissing me off and causing the problem. If we had been told in December that the money was the flight money, we never would have spent it. His employer made it excruciatingly clear that the money was his Christmas bonus, which she said he was entitled to. (And which he is entitled to. Which both of us are entitled to.)

Elithium
11-01-11, 20:28
Sorry, in my long-winded rant I forgot to add a few things:

For most teachers, even those already located in-country, an annual (or bi-annual) plane ticket to their home country is an automatic. Also fairly standard (at least at 'proper' schools, language school are a different beast) is an annual bonus, usually equal to one month of wages, generally paid at the end of contract but sometimes paid during the holidays.

Even if the plane ticket home wasn't an automatic, it would have been in our case-- we left our first Indonesian contract 9 months in to take the positions with our current employers. We signed a longer-than-normal contract and forfeited our right to our initial flight reimbursement with the express understanding that, at the end of our new contract with our new employer, we would receive $1,500 per person as flight reimbursement money. There was extensive negotiation around this point and the school representatives were/are well aware of how important that money was/is to us.

It should further be noted that the flight money is *not* a 'bonus'-- it's a reimbursement for money that we already spent, the money that it cost us to move to Indonesia in the first place, which we did out of pocket. (Like I said, that money would have been repayed to us last year by our original employer, but we broke that contract to work for our current school. When we broke the contract we lost the reimbursement, something that our new employer guaranteed to pay us at the end of the new contract.)

In our contract, we are described as employees-- NOT contracted individuals. We are sponsored as employees of our school. As mandated by our school's head office, our contract is *exactly* the same as the contracts for the local teachers. The only difference is the verbiage that was added to address immigration, housing, etc... And I waived my right to paid maternity leave. Everything else is the same. In none of the contracts-- ours or the regular teachers-- does it mention the 13th month. I think it's just assumed.

In all honesty, had my husband *not* received a December bonus, we never would have brought it up, even though I'd seen this thread long ago and knew that we were technically legally entitled to one. It's the last-minute switcharoo they're trying to pull, wherein not only do I NOT get a 13th month, but now my husband doesn't get his flight money, that's pissing me off and causing the problem. If we had been told in December that the money was the flight money, we never would have spent it. His employer made it excruciatingly clear that the money was his Christmas bonus, which she said he was entitled to. (And which he is entitled to. Which both of us are entitled to.)

What does your contract state?

Since you are under a contract with a stipulated duration (assumption here, correct if I am wrong), I believe you would be a contracted employee.

SamanthaB
12-01-11, 15:18
We are under a contract with a stipulated finish date, but it's one of those Indo-style ones where if I don't give notice about my intent to quit, I'm still technically employed here even after the contract expires-- I'm actually required to give notice, if that's what I want to do, four months before the contract expires. The contract is more of a 'you can't leave before this date' agreement than a 'your job ends on this date' agreement. And we're not the only ones on a contract-- every single employee at my school has a contract. Most employees in Indonesia have contracts, don't they? I was under the impression that that was the norm. In either case, if it's a question of am I an independent contractor vs. a company employee, I'm most definitely a company employee.

phiss
12-01-11, 16:17
Gratilla: Are you saying that an employee doesn't have a contract and that only contractors have contracts? It seems to me that you are only trying to muddy the waters here!

Employee contracts in Indonesia are either fixed term or indefinite. Whichever type you have, you are still an employee for the term of that contract and the usual government stipulations apply, i.e. you are entitled to a 13th month payment plus return flight reimbursement. I have actually read the translated legal document, but I can't remember where... sorry!

(Have much more to say but have to go to work... sorry again!).

Gratilla
12-01-11, 19:08
Gratilla: Are you saying that an employee doesn't have a contract and that only contractors have contracts? It seems to me that you are only trying to muddy the waters here!

Let me try to clarify. The 2003 Manpower Act, ie Law 13/2003 states:

An employment contract may be made for a specified time or for an unspecified time (Art. 56).

A fixed term contract is based on a term or the completion of a certain job. A work agreement for a specified time which is not made in writing is deemed concluded for an indefinite duration (Art. 57 (2)).

A work agreement for a specified time cannot be made for jobs that are permanent by nature. In addition, this kind of employment contract may be made for a period of no longer than two years and can only be extended one time that is not longer that one year (Art. 59).

While, true to form, the law does not completely demystify the difference between fixed-term contracts (ie contractors) and contracts for an unspecified period of time (ie employees), it does clearly specify significant differences for entitlements and liabilities should either type of contract be terminated - prematurely in the case of a fixed term contract.

Thus arises a large controversial grey area where the de facto (although not yet confirmed de jure, as far as I am aware) practice is that contract employees of three years or less are not subject to the same entitlements as permanent employees. Companies wishing to avoid paying the entitlements of permanent employees have made it a general (controversial) practice to not renew fixed term contracts after three years, but to permanently terminate these "employees" in accordance with the terms of their fixed term contracts.

Thus if a fixed term contract has been agreed to, it would appear to me that the terms (unless illegal) of the contract apply (and subsequently unwritten assumptions are just that). But then who am I to say, I'm certainly not a lawyer.

For questions of employment law, rights, obligations and entitlements, I would recommend you contact your local DEPNAKER(TRANS) office for a free consultation.

BTW, wrt end of term transportation, the 2003 Manpower act clearly specifies:

costs of transporting the worker and his/her family to the place where they resided before the worker was recruited and accepted the job. (Art 156(3))

Thus, if you lived in say Pondok Indah and worked in Pondok Labu, your legal entitlement is to ... bus fare!

gerrardtorres
13-01-11, 09:45
Any other nat+ and international school teachers should feel free to chime in, too. Did you get a Christmas bonus? Even if it wasn't a 13th salary, did you get anything? What about end-of-contract? Is it just flight money or is it a bonus + flight



At my School, there is no flight or bonus at all.

We had a bonus for the first year - 1 month salary at the end of the contract.

2nd year - nothing.

3rd year - 2 juta bonus for all employees - claims of poverty from the school...

However, there is no bonus or flight mentioned in my contract.

SamanthaB
13-01-11, 11:26
I brought up the law to my school and, since then, they've been (in true Indo-style) ignoring/avoiding me and any possible conflict. *sigh* Unless I'm willing to agressively pursue this through DEPNAKER, I'm pretty sure it's a lost cause. I think I'll just chalk it up as a lesson learned and make sure my next contract includes stipulations re: bonuses... :(

phiss
13-01-11, 11:27
Gratilla: An Employment Contract: I don't see the word 'contractor' anywhere in this extract from the legal document. If you are working within any company, e.g. a school etc, you are an employee whether you are on a fixed term or indefinite contract. The rest of my comments stand.

If you do not work directly for a company, but you have been asked to do a specific job over a specified period of time, you are a contractor, or if you are further down the food chain, a sub-contractor..... You are being 'contracted or sub-contracted for that specific job).

While you are quoting the law... the clauses (or separate legal document) I was referring to list 'additional' specific requirements relevant to the employment of foreign workers. Please excuse my failing memory, but I seem to recall that there was a clause relating to reimbursement of cost of travel to and from the home country.

Where no special amendments are made to the original law (i.e. the one you are quoting), then all clauses are relevant to the worker, whether they are Indonesian nationals or foreign workers. This covers the point about 13th month bonus payment.

Clear as mud, isn't it!!

Elithium
13-01-11, 15:59
Gratilla: An Employment Contract: I don't see the word 'contractor' anywhere in this extract from the legal document. If you are working within any company, e.g. a school etc, you are an employee whether you are on a fixed term or indefinite contract. The rest of my comments stand.

If you do not work directly for a company, but you have been asked to do a specific job over a specified period of time, you are a contractor, or if you are further down the food chain, a sub-contractor..... You are being 'contracted or sub-contracted for that specific job).

While you are quoting the law... the clauses (or separate legal document) I was referring to list 'additional' specific requirements relevant to the employment of foreign workers. Please excuse my failing memory, but I seem to recall that there was a clause relating to reimbursement of cost of travel to and from the home country.

Where no special amendments are made to the original law (i.e. the one you are quoting), then all clauses are relevant to the worker, whether they are Indonesian nationals or foreign workers. This covers the point about 13th month bonus payment.

Clear as mud, isn't it!!

Does it stipulate that foreign employees must also get the 13th month bonus?
As part of my last contract, I waived it, is that legal?

Also, if they were recruited in Indonesia, then the travel expense should be virtually nil, correct?

kingwilly
13-01-11, 16:40
KW, I'd especially like to hear from you, since I think we might work at the same family of schools. (A little birdy told me so.) Any other nat+ and international school teachers should feel free to chime in, too. Did you get a Christmas bonus? Even if it wasn't a 13th salary, did you get anything? What about end-of-contract? Is it just flight money or is it a bonus + flight?

since I think we might work at the same family of schools. - I thought we already asked and answered this question already, not sure that we do. I think the cute little bird was mistaken. ;)

Did you get a Christmas bonus? - nope

Even if it wasn't a 13th salary, did you get anything? - nope.

What about end-of-contract? - yes.

Is it just flight money or is it a bonus + flight? - Several months of bonus and flights every year.

kingwilly
13-01-11, 16:57
Does it stipulate that foreign employees must also get the 13th month bonus? - I suspect, but do not know for sure that the end of contract bonus usually fulfills that.

As part of my last contract, I waived it, is that legal? - I have no real idea.

Also, if they were recruited in Indonesia, then the travel expense should be virtually nil, correct? - yup. tis called local hire.

cynkawa
13-01-11, 19:25
Kingwilly: agree with all your points except "local hire". This does not exist in law. Companies are legally responsible for the "removal" of expats at the end of contracts and to settle this little point most decent schools write it into their contracts. I know many teachers who are "local hires" who get all the same benefits as foreign hires. In the eyes of the law there is no difference.

See how long it would take a company to come up with flights once you have your EPO and refuse to leave the country.

Having sat through endless DIKNAS, Immigration meetings with all the new changes around hiring Expat Teachers I am not sure anyone knows what the "law" is in relationship to the paractices.

Gratilla
13-01-11, 19:39
Gratilla: An Employment Contract: I don't see the word 'contractor' anywhere in this extract from the legal document. If you are working within any company, e.g. a school etc, you are an employee whether you are on a fixed term or indefinite contract. The rest of my comments stand.

"Contractor" and "Employee" are my own distinctions in an attempt to force some rigour into notoriously limp statute "definitions". My logic is that if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck then it is ... an employee. In law there ought to be a stricter discipline applied in the definition of key words.

There are definite differences between fixed term "contractors" and permanent "employees". For example, a contractor terminated one month into a fixed term one-year contract is legally entitled to 11 months compensation (23 months in the case of a two-year contract.) This is certainly not the case with a "permanent" employee terminated after one month.


If you do not work directly for a company, but you have been asked to do a specific job over a specified period of time, you are a contractor, or if you are further down the food chain, a sub-contractor..... You are being 'contracted or sub-contracted for that specific job).

A fixed term contract is based on a term or the completion of a certain job. (Art. 57 (2)).


While you are quoting the law... the clauses (or separate legal document) I was referring to list 'additional' specific requirements relevant to the employment of foreign workers. Please excuse my failing memory, but I seem to recall that there was a clause relating to reimbursement of cost of travel to and from the home country.

?


Where no special amendments are made to the original law (i.e. the one you are quoting), then all clauses are relevant to the worker, whether they are Indonesian nationals or foreign workers. This covers the point about 13th month bonus payment.

Of course. We're not making a distinction between local and non-local, but between "contractor" and "employee".

BTW, I believe "13th month bonus" is covered in the law as a Lebaran Bonus (which may be paid at year end, if non-Muslims prefer).

Last words are yours.


Clear as mud, isn't it!!

travellingchez
04-04-11, 21:54
Does anyone have a copy of the section of law that say companies are required to give a return flight.
I have an interview on Thursday in Jakarta and want to have that as back up in case they try to tell me it's not required. :)

atlantis
05-04-11, 05:25
Does anyone have a copy of the section of law that say companies are required to give a return flight.
I have an interview on Thursday in Jakarta and want to have that as back up in case they try to tell me it's not required. :)

Pasal 48, Undang-Undang RI nomor 13 tahun 2003 tentang ketenagakerjaan (http://www.beacukai.go.id/library/data/UU13-2003.pdf)
Pemberi kerja yang mempekerjakan tenaga kerja asing wajib memulangkan tenaga kerja asing ke negara asalnya setelah hubungan kerjanya berakhir.