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Do foreign workers have to pay union fees?

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Do foreign workers have to pay union fees? In addition to monthly social insurance contributions, employees are also very concern about union fees. Let us learn about this topic with LSX law firm as follow:

Can foreign workers join a trade union?

Can foreigners join trade unions in Vietnam? According to Guideline 03 /HD-TLD in 2020 on implementing the Charter of Vietnam Trade Union; subjects joining the Vietnam Trade Union are Vietnamese people who work as salary earners in employers’ units operating legally under Vietnamese law.

On the other hand, point clause 3.2 of Guide 03 also states:

3.2. Subjects not admitted to Vietnam Trade Union

a. Foreigners working in Vietnam;

Thus, although working legally in Vietnam, foreign workers do not need to join a union.

However, Article 1 of the 12th Vietnam Trade Union Charter still encourages foreigners to work legally in Vietnam to join Vietnamese Trade Union organizations; such as forming clubs to organize social, charity, and mass activities.

These people will also be encouraged, visited, and supported when there are difficulties or problems; or at the request of international trade unions with a cooperative relationship with the Vietnam Trade Union.

Do foreigners have to pay union fees?

According to Clause 1, Article 26 of the Law on Trade Union 2012; the union fee is paid by trade union members. Meanwhile, because foreign workers are not admitted to the union; they are not union members, so of course, foreigners will not have to pay union fees.

However, businesses that are using foreign workers may have to pay union dues based on their salaries.

By Clause 2, Article 26 of the 2012 Law on Trade Unions stipulates:

2. The trade union fund paid by agencies, organizations; and enterprises equals 2% of the salary fund as the basis for paying social insurance premiums for employees;

According to Clause 1, Article 2 of Decree 143/2018/ND-CP; foreigners working in Vietnam will be subject to participation in compulsory social insurance; if having a work permit or practicing certificate or practicing license; and signing a labor contract of total 01 years or more.

Therefore, if using the above-mentioned foreign workers; the enterprise will have to pay union dues according to the salary of both Vietnamese and foreign workers.

Don’t pay trade union fees for foreigners. Is that okay?

If the enterprise fails to pay or fails to pay enough trade union dues for foreign workers participating in social insurance; the enterprise will be sanctioned for administrative violations according to Article 37 of Decree 28/2020/ND-CP as follows:

1. A fine ranging from 12% to less than 15% of the total amount of trade union dues payable at the time of making a record of administrative violations; but not exceeding VND 75,000,000 for an employer with a in the following actions:

a) Late payment of trade union fees;

b) Failing to pay trade union dues at the prescribed level;

c) Paying trade union dues is not enough for the number of people subject to payment.

2. A fine ranging from 18% to 20% of the total amount of trade union dues payable when making records of administrative violations but not exceeding VND 75,000,000 for employers who do not pay dues. Union fees for all employees are subject to payment.

Accordingly, enterprises may be fined with a fine ranging from 12 to 20% of the total trade union dues if they do not pay enough or do not pay for all employees.

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Related questions

What is the role and position of trade unions with workers?

Trade unions in enterprises, state agencies, and other socio-political organizations are an important component to monitor and ensure the implementation of the rights of workers in that organization.

Rights and responsibilities of trade unions

Representing and protecting the lawful and legitimate rights and interests of employees.
First, participate in state management, socio-economic management.
Secondly, submit law projects and ordinances and make recommendations on policy and law development.
Thirdly, attend sessions, meetings, sessions, and conferences.
Fourthly, participate in inspection, examination, and supervision of activities of agencies, organizations, and enterprises.
Moreover, propaganda, advocacy, and education of employees.
In addition, develop union members and grassroots unions.
Furthermore, the rights and responsibilities of the immediate superior trade union at the grassroots level for the employees in agencies, organizations, and enterprises that have not yet established a grassroots trade union.

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