Shady Chinese Employer-- Labour Law advice

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Shady Chinese Employer-- Labour Law advice

    I've been in HK for a bit over year and left my previous school due to unethical practices.. only to find myself in another one. I'm starting to wonder if this a norm in Hong Kong. Much, I'd like to ask if
    anyone's expertise is in this area.. please read:

    I am a Net teacher who started at a school in September. They hired me as a supply teacher. However, after two weeks into the work they offered me a class because a teacher had left the school.

    I negotiated the salary with the principal and came to a figure ONLY after the princal agreed to offer
    me a flight allowance. She was quite hesitant, agreeing that she'd give me the first leg of the flight-- not the return.

    After a week into this new position, I did not see a new contract. So I followed up with her assistant and asked how I was going to get my flight allowance.

    She was surprised and took out my file, I noticed that INSTEAD of giving me a new contract-- they had swapped the FRONT page of the contract reflecting my new salary!!!

    I talked to the principal about the flight allowance and she DENIED of EVER having any discussion or agreeing. She was condescending and defensive. She raised her voice and was being a big b*tch. One thing if she changed her mind about it, but she DENIED ever having such conversation. I was furious.

    She said that I am not hired as an overseas teacher so I am not given that allowance. I disagreed with her because when she hired me she said I was an overseas teacher and was begging for me to take the free housing.

    She tried her best to defend her case that my transition from a SUPPLY teacher to a CLASS teacher had different terms. FURIOUS, I said apparently that these terms were not clearly presented to me, that there was a huge gray area. She snarled back by saying that the school have been in "business" for 37 years, everything is black and white or she would not be in the business for that long.

    That was when I said that swapping the front page of a contract is not very black and white.. in fact that is illegal! I should've been presented with a new contract to sign even if the terms remain the same except for the salary.

    So the reason I am inquiring is that I will soon be taking another teaching job second term. The contract says if I resign, I have to give a 3 month notice or I'd have to pay the salary. But, I am currently still on a 3 months probation.

    Does anyone know which one supercedes? What is the HK labour law on resigning during the probation period? Will the contract supercede what the labour law says or will the contract? I'd like to see if anyone has any legal knowledge to this as I would not like to pay the 3 month salary when the time comes.

    Thanks so much for advice and didn't mean to write such a long essay w/o including all the important details.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    May 2007
    In a little burrow

    See the following link:
    It seems to say that within the first month, either party can call it quits with no penalties, and after the first month of probation, at least 7 days' notice must be given (or an equivalent amount paid, I presume).
    I would double check your contract and employee handbook ASAP.

    Good luck with the dragon lady!