Labour Law Vietnam


The labour law of Vietnam is governed by the Labour Code of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The Labour Code protects the right to work, the interests and other rights of the labourer. At the same time it protects the rights and lawful interests of the labour user. Therefore creating conditions for the establishment of harmonious and stable labour relations, helping to develop the creativeness and talent of the intellectual and manual workers, of the labour managers in order to achieve productivity, quality and social progress in labour, production, service, efficiency in the use and management of labour, thus contributing to the industrialization and modernization of the country in the cause of bringing prosperity to the people and strength to the nation and building a just and civilized society.


The labour contract is the agreement between the labourer and the labour user on a paid job, on the conditions of work, on the rights and obligations of each party in the labour relations.

The labour contract must be made in one of the following forms

  1. Contract without definite term;
  2. Contract valid for from one to three years.
  3. Contract for a seasonal job or a specific job to be carried out in less than one year.

It is forbidden to sign labour contract for a season job or a specific job with a duration of less than one year to do jobs of a permanent character lasting more than one year.

The labour contract must be made in writing and done -in two copies, each party keeping one copy. The commitment can be made orally if the job has a temporary character and its term does not exceed three years or it is the job of a house worker.

The contents of the labour contract must include the following main points:

  1. the job to be done,
  2. the working time,
  3. the rest time,
  4. the salary,
  5. the place of work,
  6. the term of the contract,
  7. the conditions on labour safety and
  8. labour sanitation and social insurance for the labouring people.

The labour contract shall be. temporarily suspended in the following circumstances:

  1. The labourer is called up by his military service duty or other citizen's duties prescribed by law.
  2. The labourer is taken into temporary custody or detention.
  3. Other circumstances mutuality agreed upon.


The labouring contract shall terminate in the following circumstances

  1. End of the contract term
  2. The job under contract has been finished
  3. The two parties agree to terminate the contract
  4. The labourer is sentenced to Imprisonment or is banned from doing the former job by decision of the Court
  5. The Labourer dies or is declared missing by court decision.


As per the code the working time shall not exceed 8 hours in a day and 48 hours in a week. The labour user is entitled to schedule the working time daily or weekly but must notify the labourers in advance.

The daily working time shall be shortened by one or two hours for those labourers working in especially heavy, noxious or dangerous jobs as prescribed in the list of such jobs published by the Ministry or labour, War Invalids and Social Welfare and the Ministry of Public Health.

The labour user and the labourer may agree on extrahours work but the time of such work shall not exceed four hours in a day and 200 hours in a year.

The working time at night is counted from 22 hours to 6 hours of the following day or from 21 hrs to 5 hrs or the following day depending day on the climatic zones stipulated by the Government.


The code describes that the labourer is entitled to the following rest times

  1. at least half an hour of rest inclusive of the working time if he works continuously for eight hours.
  2. on a night shift is entitled to at least 45 minutes of rest inclusive of the working time.
  3. on night- shift is entitled at least 12 hours of rest before beginning another shift.
  4. each week the labourer is entitled at least one day or rest (24 straight hours).
  5. weekly rest day on Sunday or any other fixed day in the week.
  6. where the rest day cannot be arranged weekly due to the work cycle, the labour user must ensure that the labourer can have an average of four days of rest at least in a month.

The labourer is entitled to obtain from work and receive full pay on the following holidays:

  1. New Year's Day (solar calendar): one day
  2. Lunar New Year Festival: four days (the last day of the year and the first three days of the new year)
  3. Victory Day: one day (April 30)
  4. International labour Day: one day (May 1st)
  5. National Day: one day (September 2nd).

In case the above holidays coincide with weekly non-working days the labourer is entitled to take one day's leave on the following day.

The labourer with 12 months service at 8 business or with a labour user is entitled to an annual leave with full pay with the following specifications:

  1. 12 days for a person working in normal conditions,
  2. 14 days for a person working in heavy , noxious or dangerous Jobs or in places with harsh living conditions or for persons under 18 years of age;
  3. 16 days for persons working in especially heavy, noxious and dangerous jobs or in places with especially harsh living conditions.

The number of days in an annual leave shall increase proportionally with the seniority of work at a business or with a labour user at the rate of one day for every five years.


The labourer is entitled to fully paid leaves for personal affairs in the following circumstances:

  1. Marriage: three days.
  2. Marriage of his son or daughter: one day.
  3. Death of parents (including parents of husband or wife) death of wife or husband, death of son or daughter: 3 days.


An under-age labourer is one under 18 years of age. Where under - age labour is employed there must be a separate record of these youngsters with their full names, dates of birth, their current jobs, the results of each periodical health check which must be produced to the labour inspector on his request. It is strictly forbidden to misuse the labour of under-age persons.

It is forbidden to sign on children of less than 15 years of age except for some professions and jobs to be defied by the Ministry of labour, War Invalids and Social Welfare. With regard to some profession services allowed to sign on children under 15 years of age for work, job learning or apprenticeship this admission and utilization must have the consent and the constant care of their parents or tutors.

The labour user or the employer has the responsibility to care for the under-age labourer in the domains or labour, wages, health and studies during the process of labour. It is forbidden to use under - age labourers in heavy and dangerous job or jobs necessitating contract with noxious substances prescribed in the list published by the Ministry of labour, War Invalids and Social Welfare and the Ministry of Public Health.

Working time

The working time of an under-age labourer must not exceed seven hours in a day and 42 hours in a week.

The labour user can use under - age labour for off hours work or night work in a number of occupations and Jobs defined by the Ministry of labour, War Invalids and Social Welfare.


The labour user has the responsibility of fully providing the labourers with equipment for labour protection, labour safety and labour sanitation and for improving their labouring conditions. The labourer must observe the regulation on labour safety, labour sanitation and the labour rules of the business. All organisations and individuals related to labour and production must observe legislation on labour safety, labour sanitation and environmental protection.

The building of new establishments or the expansion of and transformation of existing ones for the production, utilization, maintenance, storage and stockpiling of machine, equipment, materials and substances requiring a high level of labour safety and labour sanitation must be provided with.

The production or importation of machines, equipment, materials and substances requiring a high level of labour safety and sanitation must be declared and registered and have the licenses of the State inspection offices on labour safety or labour sanitation.

The labour user must ensure that the working place meet the norms on space, airiness, lighting and the prescribed maximum limits on dust, steam, noxious gases, radiations magnetism, heat, noise, vibration and other harmful factors. These factors must be periodically controlled and measured.

The labour user must periodically control and repair the machines, equipment, building structures and storage according to the norms of labour safety and labour sanitation.

The labour user must have the necessary equipment to shelter those parts of machines and equipment in the business likely to provoke accidents. The working places, the emplacements of machines and equipment, the places likely to cause dangers or noxious effects in the business must be so arranged to provide against accidents and equipped with signs and signals on labour safety and labour sanitation put up at open places where they can be easily seen and read.

In case the working place or a machine or equipment threatens to cause a labour accident or occupational disease, the labour user must immediately take remedial measures or must order immediate cessation of operation at the said place until the danger has been removed.

The labourer has the right to refuse to work or leave the working place when i he detects an imminent labour accident is seriously threatening his life or health and he must immediately warns the directly responsible person of the danger. The labour user must not force the labourer to continue his work or return to the working place so long as the danger has not been removed.

At the working place where dangerous and noxious factors exist susceptible of provoking labour accidents must be equipped by the labour user with technical and medical devices and appropriate labour protection gear to ensure timely rescue when an accident or labour accident occurs.

The labourer doing dangerous or noxious jobs must be adequately equipped with personal protection means. The labour user must ensure the supply of means for personal protection achieving the norms in quality and designs as prescribed by law.

In recruiting and arranging labour the labour user shall base himself on the health criteria for each type of work. He must organise training, guidance and inform the labourer of the regulations and measures of safety an sanitation and the possibilities of accident to be prevented in the work of each labourer.

The labourer must be given a health check during the recruitment and periodical health checks according to the prescribed regime. The cost of health checks for the labourer is borne by the labour user.

The business has the responsibility to organize healthcare for the labourers and must give first aid and emergency aid to the labourers when necessary.

The labourer working in the conditions of dangerous or noxious elements shall receive retainer in kind, enjoys preferential treatment in the matters of working time and rest time as described by law.

The labourer working in a place infested by noxious elements or bacteria must be ensured by the labour user of measures for detoxication and disinfection and personal hygiene after working time.

Labour accident is an accident causing injuries to any part or function on the body of the labourer or death of the labourer in the process of working associated with the execution of a job or a task.

The victim of labour accident must be rescued in time and carefully treated. The labour user must take responsibility for letting a labour accident occur, as prescribed by law.

Occupational disease is a disease caused by the harmful effects of the labour conditions of the occupation on the labourer. The list of the occupational diseases shall be published by the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Labour, War Invalids and Social Welfare after consultation with the Vietnam General Federation of Labour and the representative of the labour users.

The sufferer of an occupational disease must be given careful treatment, given periodical medical checks and have a specific medical record of his own.

The labourer rendered invalid by a labour accident or an occupational disease shall receive a general check-up by the medical examination board for classification of his injury and the rate of reduction of his working capacity and shall go through a rehabilitation process to recuperate his labour capabilities. If later he can continue to work he shall be assigned a job suited to his health according to the conclusion of the Labour Medical examination Board.

The labour user must bear all the medical cost from the first aid and emergency aid till completion of the treatment of the victim of labour accident or occupational disease. The labourer is entitled to the system regime of social insurance in case of labour accident or occupational disease. If the business has not joined any form of statutory social insurance, the labour user must pay to the labourer a sum equal to that provided for in the Social Insurance Statute.

The labour user has the responsibility to pay a compensation representing at least 30 months salaries of the labourer who suffers a reduction by 81 % and more of his labour capacity or an equivalent amount to the close relatives of a labourer who dies of a labour accident or an occupational disease not of his own fault.

In esse the injury or the death of the labourer is due to his own fault, the labourer still receive an allowance equalling at least 12 months of his salary.