Vietnam

Global Compliance Guide

Labor Requirements

The Labour Law in Vietnam is regulated mainly by the Labour Code of 2019. The Labour Code governs the terms and conditions of employment such as working hours, holidays and rest periods, wages, overtime, employment relationships. The other acts that govern employment relationships are Law on Social Insurance, etc.

Hours & Pay Regulations

Normal Working Hours

The normal working hours shall not exceed 8 hours per day or 48 hours per week. 

 

An employer has the right to determine the daily or weekly working hours and inform the employees accordingly. The daily working hours shall not exceed 10 hours per day and 48 hours per week where a weekly basis is applied. Employers are encouraged to apply 40-hour workweeks in their establishments as a general practice. Labour Code, § 105. 

Overtime

Overtime work is the duration of work performed beyond normal working hours.

 

Limit of Overtime 

The duration of Overtime hours of an employee shall not exceed 50 % of the number of working hours in a day. In the case of weekly overtime hours, the threshold for normal working hours plus overtime working hours shall not exceed 12 hours in a day. The monthly overtime limit is 40 hours. The total overtime working hours shall not exceed 200 hours in a year. 

 

Exceptions to the Yearly Overtime

An employer must not request an employee to work overtime exceeding 300 hours in a year in various fields like manufacturing and processing of textiles, garments, electrical industry, agro and forestry, communications, refinery, supply, etc. This also applies to work requiring skilled employees not easily available, and for urgent work that cannot be delayed due to technical issues, disasters, and shortage of material. 

 

Overtime Work in Special Cases

In the below cases, an employer has the right to request any employee to work overtime on any day without limits on the overtime hours and the employee must not decline:

      • National security or national defense;
      • Tasks necessary to protect human life or property of certain organizations or individuals in the prevention and recovery of natural disasters, fires, epidemics, and disasters, unless those tasks threaten the employees’ health or life as prescribed by occupational safety and health laws. 

Overtime Pay

An employee who works overtime shall be paid an amount based on the piece rate or actual salary in the below manner:

        • On normal days at the rate of at least 150%
        • On weekly days off at the rate of at least 200%;
        • During public holidays, at least 300%, not including the daily salary during the public holiday. 

Please find the complete calculation of overtime here. Labour Code, § 98, 107 and 108.

Night Work

Night work is considered as the work performed between 10 pm and 6 am. Employees shall be given a rest break shall be at least 45 consecutive minutes.

 

Pay for Night Work

An employee who works at night will be paid an additional amount of at least 30% of the normal salary. 

 

Pay for Overtime Work at Night

An employee who works overtime at night will be paid, an additional 20% of the normal salary. Labour Code, § 106, § 98.

Breaks

An employee who works for at least 6 hours a day shall be given a rest break of at least 30 consecutive minutes. If an employee’s shift lasts at least 6 consecutive hours, the rest break shall be included in the working hour.  In addition to the prescribed rest break, the employer shall determine other short breaks and specify that in the internal labor regulations. Labour Code, § 109 and 116. 

 

Daily Rest

An employee who performs shift work is entitled to a break of at least 12 hours before beginning another shift. Labour Code, § 110.

 

Weekly Rest

An employee is entitled to a break of at least 24 consecutive hours each week. 

 

In cases where it is not possible for an employee to take a weekly day off due to the work cycle, an employer shall ensure that an employee on average has at least 4 days off per month. The employer can schedule the weekly breaks either on Sunday or for another fixed day in a week.

Work On Rest Days

Pay for Overtime on Weekly Rest

An employee who works overtime on weekends during the day shift is entitled to receive compensation at the rate of 200%. An employee who works overtime on weekends during night shift time shall receive compensation at the rate of 270%.

 

When Weekly Rest coincide with Public Holiday

In case a public holiday falls on an employee’s weekly rest day, he/she will have compensatory time-off on the next working day. Labour Code, § 111, 98. 

Public Holidays

Employees are entitled to 11 paid public holidays:

      • Gregorian Calendar New Year Holiday: 1 day (the 1st of January of the Gregorian calendar)
      • Lunar New Year Holidays: 5 days;*
      • Victory Day: 1 day (the 30th of April of the Gregorian calendar);
      • International Labor Day: 1 day (the 1st of May of the Gregorian calendar);
      • National Day: 2 days (the 2nd of September of the Gregorian calendar and the previous or next day);
      • Hung Kings Commemoration Day: 1 day (the 10th of the third month of the Lunar calendar). 

*The government authority shall decide the specific public holidays of Lunar New Year and National Day on an annual basis.

 

Effective January 1, 2021, one day off for the National Day, either on 1st or 3rd September has been added. The schedule of “National Day” holidays will be decided annually by the government authority. Foreign employees in Vietnam are entitled to one traditional public holiday and one National Day of their country, in addition to the specified public holidays.

 

When Weekly Rest Coincide with Public Holiday

If any of the public holidays fall on a weekend, the employees are entitled to take the next weekday off.

 

Pay for Overtime Work on Public Holiday

An employee who works overtime during day time on public holidays is entitled to receive compensation at the rate of 300%. An employee who works overtime during the night time on a public holiday shall receive compensation at the rate of 390%. Labour Code, § 112.

Annual Leave

An employee who has been working for an employer for 12 months is entitled to paid annual leave in the below manner:

      • 12 working days for employees who work in normal working conditions;
      • 14 working days for employees that are minors, the disabled, employees who do laborious, toxic, or dangerous works;
      • 16 working days for employees who do highly laborious, toxic, or dangerous work. 

The annual leave of an employee shall increase by one day for every 5 years of employment with the same employer.

 

An employee who has been working for an employer for less than 12 months is entitled to a number of paid leave days proportional to the number of working months. Wherein the entitlement is calculated on a pro-rata basis in proportion to the length of their period of employment, which means an employee shall be entitled to one leave day for each month of work.

 

An employee who, due to employment termination or job loss or other reasons, has not taken or not entirely taken up his/her annual leave shall be paid in compensation for the untaken leave days.

 

Accrual of Annual Leave

An employer and employee may enter into an agreement to take annual leave in installments or combining annual leave over a maximum period of up to 3 years.

 

When an employee has to travel by road, rail, water, such travel days shall be added to the annual leave of the employee, if it is in excess of 2 days. This shall only be granted once for annual leave in a year. Labour Code, § 113 and 114. 

Minimum Wage

Effective January 1, 2020, there are four regional minimum salary levels applicable to employers, ranging from VND3,070,000 (the lowest level) to VND4,420,000 (the highest level) per month, depending on the locality.

Special Leave

Sick Leave

An employee is entitled to sick leave if the following conditions are met:

      • To take leave due to sickness or accident, with the certification of a medical care establishment. In case of taking leave due to sickness or accident because of self-infliction, drunkenness, abuse of drugs, or other additives, employees are not entitled to the sickness benefit. 
      • To take leave to take care of children who are less than seven years old get sick, with the certification of a medical care establishment. 

The maximum number of paid sick leave days within a year, calculated according to working days and excluding public holidays, New year holidays, and weekends, is as follows:

 

For employees working under normal working conditions:

        • 30 days if they have paid social insurance premiums for less than 15 years;
        • 40 days if they have paid social insurance premiums for 15 years to less than 30 years; and
        • 60 days if they have paid social insurance premiums for 30 years or more.

 For employees working in heavy, hazardous, or toxic occupations or jobs on the list promulgated by the Ministry of Labour and the Ministry of Health, or working regularly in specified regions:

          • 40 days, if they have paid social insurance premiums for less than 15 years;
          • 50 days if they have paid social insurance premiums for 15 years to less than 30 years; and
          • 70 days if they have paid social insurance premiums for 30 years or more. 

Employees infected with a disease on the list of diseases requiring long-term treatment, as promulgated by the Ministry of Health, are entitled to the following paid sick leave regime:

            • A maximum of 180 days in a year, including public holidays and weekends.
            • Employees still needing treatment after 180 days continue to be entitled to the paid sick leave regime at a lower level (45% to 65% of their salary or remuneration as defined above). 

Note – Sick leave entitlement for expatriate employees is subject to the agreement between the employer and the expatriate employee.

 

Pay

Sick pay is covered by the social insurance fund in the below manner:

            • Employees will be paid 75% of their salary or remuneration that is a basic salary to contribute to the social insurance and to be prorated for actual leave days.
            • Employees who are allowed to take a leave for convalescence and rehabilitation will enjoy benefits as follows: The daily benefit is equivalent to 25% of the basic minimum salary if the employee convalesces at home, or 40% of the basic minimum salary if the employee convalesces at a facility. 

Law on Social Insurance, § 24 – 29.

Personal Leave

An employee is entitled to the following paid personal leaves on the condition that the employer is notified of the leave-in advance by the employee.

      • Marriage – 3 days
      • Marriage of his/her biological child or adopted child – 1 day
      • Death of his/her biological or adoptive parent, spouse’s biological or adoptive parent, spouse, biological or adopted child – 3 days. 

Unpaid Leave

An employee is entitled to 1 day of unpaid leave and must inform the employer in the case of the death of his/her grandparent or biological sibling, the marriage of his/her parent or natural sibling. An employee can also negotiate with the employer on taking certain unpaid leave not provided in the law. Labour Code, § 115.

Maternity Leave

A female employee is entitled to 6 months of prenatal and postnatal leave and the prenatal leave period shall not exceed 2 months. In case of multiple births, the leave shall be extended by 1 month for each child, counting from the second child. A female employee may be granted unpaid leave upon request after the expiry of the maternity leave under the terms agreed upon with the employer.

A female employee may return to work after the expiry of the maternity leave after she has taken at least 4 months of leave on the condition that she has obtained confirmation from a health facility that the work does not adversely affect her health and that the employer is given prior notice of resumption of the work.

 

In such a case, female employees shall receive the salary for the working days and shall also continue to receive the maternity allowance in accordance with social insurance laws.

 

If a child dies within 2 months from the date of birth, in such cases, the female employee is entitled to a 4-month leave from the date of the childbirth. In cases, where the child aged 2 months or older dies, the female employee is entitled to a 2 month of leave from the date of the child’s death, but the maternity leave shall not exceed more than 6 months, and such leave period shall not be included in the period of personal leave.

 

In case only the mother is covered by social insurance or both parents are covered by social insurance but the mother dies in childbirth, the father or the direct fosterer is entitled to maternity leave for the remaining period applicable to the mother. In case the mother is covered by social insurance but does not fully pay social insurance for a period of at least 6 months before the childbirth or adoption and dies, in such cases, the father or the direct fosterer is entitled to maternity leave until the child reaches full 6 months.

The maternity leave period is inclusive of public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends.

 

Leave for Prenatal Check-Up

Female employees are entitled to take leaves for 5 prenatal check-ups, 1 day for each check-up; employees who live far from health establishments or have pathological signs or abnormal pregnancies are entitled to take a two-day leave for each prenatal check-up. The leave period shall be counted in working days, excluding public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends.

 

Leave period upon miscarriage, abortion, stillbirth, or pathological abortion 

A female employee may take a maternity leave as prescribed by a competent health establishment. The maximum leave period is:

      • 10 days, for the pregnancy of under 5 weeks; 
      • 20 days, for the pregnancy of between 5 weeks and under 13 weeks; 
      • 40 days, for the pregnancy of between 13 weeks and under 25 weeks; 
      • 50 days, for the pregnancy of 25 weeks or more.  

The maternity leave period specified is inclusive of public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends.

 

Maternity leave for surrogate and intended mothers

A female employee who is a surrogate mother while getting prenatal check-ups, miscarriage, abortion, stillbirth, or pathological abortion, can take maternity leave until the time of leaving the child to the intended mother for a period not exceeding 6 months. In case the maternity leave period is under 60 days from the date of childbirth to the time of giving the child to the intended mother, surrogate mothers are entitled to continue the maternity leave until such leave period reaches full 60 days, including public holidays, New Year holidays and weekends.

 

Intended mothers are entitled to maternity leave from the time of receiving the child until the child reaches the full 6 months.

 

Leave period while taking contraceptive measures

When taking contraceptive measures, employees are entitled to the maternity regime as prescribed by competent health establishments. The maximum leave period is: 

        • 7 days, for female employees implanted with intrauterine devices; 
        • 5 days, for employees taking sterilization measures. 

The maternity leave period specified is inclusive of public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends.

 

Leave for Recovery after Childbirth

In case a female employee’s health cannot fully recover within 30 working days following maternity leave, she may ask for an additional leave of between 5 and 10 days. The period of leave for health recovery includes public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends. If such a period lasts from the end of a year to the next year, it will be counted for the previous year. The maximum number of days off for health recovery must be jointly decided by the employer and Trade Union, specifically:

          • 10 days for female employees who give birth to twins or more infants;
          • 7 days for female employees who have a cesarean birth;
          • 5 days for other cases.

The daily allowance for health recovery after the maternity leave is equal to 30 percent of the basic salary level.

 

Menstruation Break

During an employee’s menstruation period, she shall be entitled to a 30-minute break in every working day.

 

Breastfeeding Break

A female employee nursing a child under 12 months of age shall be entitled to a 60 minutes break during a workday with full salary.

 

Pay 

Female employees giving birth or employees adopting an under-6-month child are entitled to a lump-sum allowance equalling 2 times the basic salary for each child in the month of childbirth or child adoption. In case the mother gives birth to a child but only the father is covered by social insurance, the father is entitled to a lump-sum allowance equalling 2 times the basic salary for each child in the month of childbirth.

 

A female employee is entitled to a monthly allowance equal to her average monthly salary, on which social insurance premiums are based, in 6 months before you take the maternity leave. A male employee is entitled to each day off equal to the monthly maternity allowance divided by 24 days. If he has paid social insurance premiums for less than 6 months, his allowance level is his average monthly salary in the months for which social insurance premiums have been paid.

 

The maternity leave of 14 working days or more in a month is regarded as a period of social insurance premium payment. During this period, the employee and employer are not required to pay social insurance premiums. Labor Law § 137,  Law on Social Insurance, § 30 – 35 and 38. 

Paternity Leave

A male employee who has been paying social insurance premiums and whose wife gives birth to children are entitled to take maternity leave in the first 30 days starting from the date of childbirth in the below manner:

      • 5 working days;
      • 7 working days, in case his wife undergo a surgical birth or give birth to children before 32 weeks of pregnancy; 
      • 10 working days, in case his wife gives birth to twins; or additional 3 working days for each infant from the second; 
      • 14 working days, in case his wife gives birth to twins or more infants and takes childbirth operations.
Carer Leave

An employee is entitled to leave upon sickness of a child in a year, which shall be calculated based on the number of days of care for the sick child, which must not exceed 20 working days, if the child is under 3 years old, or must not exceed 15 working days if the child is between full 3 years and under 7 years old.

 

The leave period upon sickness of children shall be counted in working days, excluding public holidays, New Year holidays, and weekends.

 

Pay – Employees will be paid 75% of their salary or remuneration that is a basic salary to contribute to the social insurance and to be prorated for actual leave days. Law on Social Insurance, § 26.

Adoption Leave

Employees adopting an under-6-month child are entitled to maternity leave until the child reaches the full 6 months. In case both parents are covered by social insurance and fully satisfy the conditions for enjoying the maternity regime either father or mother only is entitled to maternity leave.

 

An employee who adopts a child under the age of 6 months is entitled to maternity leave until the child becomes 6 months. In cases, where both parents are covered by social insurance and have paid premiums for at least 6 months in the 12 month time period before childbirth, either of them is allowed to take maternity leave. Law on Social Insurance, § 36.

Injury Leave

Even after treatment for occupational disease or injuries caused by a labor accident if the employee has not recovered, he or she shall be entitled to a leave of between 5 days and 10 days for health recovery and rehabilitation.

 

Pay

The daily allowance is equivalent to 25% of the basic salary if the health rehabilitation takes place at home; or equivalent to 40% of the basic salary if health rehabilitation takes place at health establishments. Law on Social Insurance, § 52. 

Last updated on: February 11th, 2021