Labour Law Thailand

The following Acts governs the laws concerning labor issues in Thailand:
  1. Labor Protection Act B.E. 2541 (1998)
  2. Labor Relations Act B.E. 2518 (A.D. 1975).
  3. The Act Establishing the Labor Court and Labor Court Procedure B.E. 2522 (A..D. 1979).
  4. Provident Fund Act B.E. 2530 (A.D. 1987).
  5. Social Security Act B.E. 2533 (A.D. 1900).
  6. Workmen's Compensation Act B.E. 2537 (A.D. 1994).
  7. Thai Civil and Commercial Code
Employee means a person who is employed by an employer for remuneration, regardless of the title that he is given.
Employer means a person who employs or a person designated on behalf of him to employ an employee for monetary remuneration.
The working rules and regulations are set out in the Labor Protection Act and other Acts deals with the specific issues of labor. It includes the following rules:
  1. Working hour
  2. Child and Female labor
  3. Remuneration
  4. Overtime
  5. Sick leave
  6. Maternity leave
  7. Employee welfare
  8. Termination and dismissal of employee
  9. Discipline and disciplinary action etc.
  10. Provident fund is dealt in Provident Funds Act
  11. Labor Disputes (Labor Relation Act)
  12. Social Security of the employee is dealt in Social Security Act.
  13. Compensation for workers is governed by the Workmen's Compensation Act
  14. Thai Civil and Commercial Code deals with the Hiring of services.
The Minister of Labor and Social Welfare is the in charge for labor welfare and has the power to appoint labor inspectors and issue Ministerial Regulations and notifications.
There is a Remuneration Committee consisting of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare as Chairman, representatives of the government, representatives each of employers and employees, for fixing the remuneration and determine the basic pay.
An employer shall treat male and female employees equally in their employment, except where the nature or conditions of the work does or do not allow the employer to so do.
However an employer is prohibited from requiring a female employee to perform any of the following work:
  1. Mining or construction work which must be performed underground, underwater, in a cavern, in a tunnel or in a crater of a mountain, except where the conditions of work are not hazardous to the employee's health or body;
  2. Work on scaffolding which is 10 meters or more above the ground;
  3. Production or transportation of explosives or inflammable materials;
An employer shall not ask to work a pregnant female employee between 22:00 hours and 06:00 hours, or to work overtime, work on holidays, or perform any of the following:
  1. Work on plant or equipment that vibrates;
  2. Operate or go along with a mechanically propelled vehicle;
  3. Lift, carry or bear on her head or shoulders, or pull or push loads that weigh more than 15 kilograms;
  4. Work on water-going vessels;
  5. Such other work as is prescribed by Ministerial Regulations.
A pregnant female employee is entitled to maternity leave of not more than 90 days for each pregnancy with pay of wages for 45 days.
An employer is prohibited from terminating a female employee because of her pregnancy
The minimum as for employing a child labor is 15 years of age. For employing a child under the age of 18 years the employer has to Notify the labor inspector of the employment of the child employee within 15 days from the date when the child commences his work.
An employer shall arrange for a child employee to have an uninterrupted rest period each day of not less than one hour for every four hours worked.
An employer shall not cause a child employee under the age of 18 to work between 22:00 hours and 06:00 hours, except on written permission granted by the Director-General or his designate.
An employer shall not cause a child employee aged under 18 to work overtime or on holidays.
The employer shall not put the child labor under the age of 18 years to do hazardous work like
  1. Smelting, blowing, casting, or rolling metal;
  2. Stamping metal;
  3. Work involving conditions of heat, cold, vibration, sound and abnormal lighting which may be dangerous as prescribed by Ministerial Regulations;
  4. Work involving hazardous chemicals;
  5. Work involving poisonous microorganisms, which include virus, bacteria, fungus, or other microorganisms as prescribed by Ministerial Regulations;
An employer shall not put a child employee aged under 18 to perform work in any of the following establishments:
  1. Slaughterhouses;
  2. Gambling houses;
  3. Dance halls, Thai or Malaysian style dancing;
  4. Establishments where food, liquor, tea, or other beverages are served, and where the services of prostitutes, sleeping facilities, or massage are offered etc.
An employer is prohibited from
  1. paying remuneration of a child employee to a person other than the employee.
  2. demanding or receiving a guarantee money for any reason whatsoever, from the child employee.
The termination should pursuant to a notice in writing to the employee.
But it is not required to pay severance pay to an employee whose employment has been terminated for any of the following reasons:
  1. Dishonest performance of his duties or the intentional commission of a criminal act against the employer;
  2. Intentionally causing loss to the employer;
  3. Performance of an act of gross negligence which results in severe loss to the employer;
  4. Violation of the employer's work rules or regulations or orders which are both lawful and equitable when the employer has already issued the employee with a prior written warning, except in a serious instance when the employer is not required to give a warning.
Where the employer terminates the employment of an employee, the employer shall pay basic pay, overtime pay, holiday pay and holiday overtime pay to an employee entitled to receive such pay, within three days from the date of termination of the employment.
The labor disputes issues are governed by The Labor Relations Act which establishes procedures for labor negotiations, mediation by the Department of Labor Protection and Welfare officials, or arbitration by the Labor Relations Committee.
  1. In the matter of condition of employment
    1. Where the labor dispute arose for the condition of employment, the complaining party must serve written notice on the other.
    2. The issues first go for amicable settlement through direct negotiation by duly authorized representatives of the employer and employee.
    3. If the settlement fails then the dispute is referred to the Conciliation Officer, who will mediate the dispute.
    4. If mediation fails, then to arbitration by one or more arbitrators.
    5. During such period the employer may effect a lockout or the employees may go on strike, but this is subject to restrictions on some businesses, as mentioned in the Labor Relations Act.
  2. Essential Services affecting general public such as Railways, telephone etc.
Where the negotiations and mediation fail, the matter will be referred to the Labor Relations Committee.
The Committee's decision can be appealed to the Minister of Interior within seven days from the date of receipt of the decision.
The Minister will issue a decision on such appeal and notify both parties within ten days of receipt of the appeal.
A Labor Relations Committee decision is final if not appealed within seven days, as is the Minister's decision regarding appeal. However, the appeal can be made to the Labor Court having jurisdiction to try the matter in the country.
The Labor Relations Act provides that employees may form labor unions to protect their employment benefits and/or interests and to promote good relations between the employer and employees, as well as among the employees themselves so long as it does not constitute threat to the national security.
Labor unions must be registered with the Registrar of the Department of Labor Protection and Welfare and start their operation upon the issuance of a license.
Persons having the following qualification can form the labor union.
  1. Must be Thai nationals employed by the same employer or engaged in the same type of activity in the same province and
  2. must be 20 years of age or over
  3. the Labor Union must have at least ten promoters
An employee who has worked continuously for one full year shall be entitled to an annual holiday of not less than six working days which shall be fixed in advance by the employer or set out in an agreement made between the employer and the employee. The employee is entitled to the following holidays:
  1. A weekly holiday,
  2. A traditional holiday;
  3. Annual vacation

An employee is entitled to sick leave. If sick leave is taken for three or more working days, the employer may require that the employee acquire a medical certificate from a first class medical practitioner or from a government clinic. If the employee fails to acquire a medical certificate from a first class medical practitioner or from a government clinic, the employee shall provide the employer with an explanation. The sick leave shall not be more than 30 working days per annum.