Monday, May 06, 2024

Employee entitled to 5 times wages, if employer does not pay in time - Make this the LAW to Deter Employers from delay or non payment of wages?

What happens when the employer does not pay workers their wages or overtime in time set by the law -'...every employer shall pay to each of his employees not later than the seventh day after the last day of any wage period the wages, less lawful deductions earned by such employee during such wage period....Section 19 Employment Act 1955)?

Will the employer have to pay a 'penalty' or even interest for the delay? Nothing of that sort in the law - so nothing additional, just pay the worker his wages, overtime, etc... Shockingly UNJUST. Some relevant sections, as examples, are as follows:-

Section 87A  Court order for payments due to employee

(1) Where an employer has been convicted of an offence relating to the payment of wages or any other payments payable to an employee under this Act, the court before which he is convicted may order the employer to pay any payment due to the employee in relation to that offence.

Section 100  Penalties for failure or non-compliance in relation to rest days, overtime, holidays, annual leave, and sick leave

 (1) Any employer who fails to pay any of his employees wages for work done by his employee on a rest day or pays wages less than the rate provided under section 60 commits an offence, and shall also, on conviction, be ordered by the court before which he is convicted to pay to the employee concerned the wages due for work done on every rest day at the rate provided under section 60, and the amount of such wages shall be recoverable as if it were a fine imposed by such court.

Thus, all that the employer who failed to pay wages, overtime payment, payments for work on rest days, etc on time as required by law - will later SIMPLY have to pay the worker the same amount as amount due. NO need to add on any interest. NO need to pay DOUBLE, etc  

Remember, most workers have monthly financial obligations for his/her living and those of her family/dependents. When a worker is not paid in time by the 'bad' employer, what does he do? Rental/Housing loans, electricity/water/sewage/telephone/Astro TV bills, Hire Purchase monthly payments, school fees, road tax, toll payments, bus fares,... If he does not fulfil his financial obligations, the worker and family suffers. Will he/she be forced to take loans from ALONGS(illegal money lenders) as banks seldom give normal workers loans as they do not have hose/land or even regular employment to act as Security for loan.

When he expends time/effort having to go to the Human Resource Department, and maybe later  the Labour Court - the worker expends monies or monies worth. He may need to hire a lawyer - money needed.

Despite all this, the COURT just ask the 'bad' employer what was due to the worker. If the employer owed the worker RM5,000 in wages/overtime payments/etc - the Employer will only be required to pay the victim worker RM5,000???

This is most unjust - for in the pursuit of justice, the victimized worker may have spend even RM5,000 or more just to recover unpaid wages/OT, etc

So, no wonder many worker victims simply 'GIVE UP' and not pursue justice through the HR Department and/or the Labour Court - for at the end of the day, they may end up losing so much more than the amount due and payable by their employer to them.


1. If the employer fails to pay the employee wages/OT or other payment due to workers within time stipulated in law, thereafter the employer shall be liable to pay the worker-employee TWO(2) times the amount due and payable, and if the delay is more than ONE(1) Month, the employer shall be liable to pay THREE(3) times the amount due and payable, and where the delay is more than Five(5) months, the employer shall be liable to pay the employee FIVE(5) times the amount due and payable.

> Now, this will DETER employers from delaying payment of wages, etc for work already done by workers. Remember for 'corruption' cases, Malaysian law already provide for payment 5 times the amount involved - so there is the precedence in law which justifies the above mentioned reforms.

Penalty for offences under sections 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22 and 23 (MACC Act)

24. (1) Any person who commits an offence under sections 16, 17, 20, 21, 22 and 23 shall on conviction be liable to—

(a) imprisonment for a term not exceeding twenty years; and

(b) a fine of not less than five times the sum or value of the gratification which is the subject matter of the offence, where such gratification is capable of being valued or is of a pecuniary nature, or ten thousand ringgit, whichever is the higher....

So, whenever an employer does not pay their worker-employee wages/OT/etc for work already done, should not they be liable to pay FIVE(5) times the amount due and payable.


Employer supposed to pay wages of April 2024 of RM1,500, not later than 7th May - but if the employer fails to do this in time, then the employer should be penalized by having to now pay the worker 2 time(or 3 times or 5 times) the amount to the worker depending on the amount of delay - so, the worker will get RM3k or RM4.5k or RM7.5k depending on the amount of delay, and thereafter maybe INTEREST of 8 or 10% per month/year. This will END the non-payment and/or delay in paying workers monies due.

FINES - do not help the worker, as the money goes to the government NOT the worker.

As now, employers are required to pay into worker's bank account - The proof/evidence of whether the employer paid on time or not is easily obtainable.

So, will the government ACT to better protect WORKERS - or is this government pro-employer who will allow employers to continue delaying wages - an easy NO INTEREST loan, which sometimes may not be even settled. POOR WORKERS - 

Human Resource Minister Steven Sim, PM Anwar Ibhahim  and Pakatan Harapan-led coalition government - end denial of timely wages to workers. DETERRENT laws that benefit workers needed



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