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05/07/2011 07:14:06
Re: Employment Act or Contracts Act?

Dear Mr Siew,

Re: Employment Act or Contracts Act?

1. I was employed to be Superintending Officer in a Repainting Project for a condominium in KL.

2. A Letter of Appointment (LOA) has these salient points:
(i) the "retainer fee" (not salary or wage) was RM6,000/- per month for a 8-month period, and capped at RM48,000/-;
(ii) the appointment shall commence from the date of award to the contractors and shall terminate with the final payments or the completion of the defects liability period (DLP), whichever is the later. (allowing 12 months for DLP the job could be for 9 months);
(iii) there is no termination clause;
(iv) there is no provision for dispute resolution between employer and employee.
(v) the LOA is not witnessed, is not stamped and or registered (therefore not a "Contract" in my view).

3. I gave 6 weeks notice of resignation (4 weeks being minimum). Employer challenges this and citing point 2(ii) above, by which Employer contends that the LOA is a "Contract".

4. Employer has wilfully witheld my wages for 2 (two ) months (subsequent to my resignation); and threatens to sue for damages.

Query: Is it EA or Contract? Is my resignation valid?
Thank you
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KL Siew
05/07/2011 09:12:14
Since the EA only covers employees with salary not more than RM1500, they will most probably sue you in the civil court if they ever want to take action against you. Better you seek legal opinion from a lawyer.
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06/07/2011 07:49:01
Dear Mr Siew,
Thank you for your prompt response and advice.

May I make another point and query?

EA 69B(1) states "Notwithstanding the provision of this Act, the powers of the Director General under Paragraph 69(1)(a) shall extend to employees whose wages exceed 1,500 ringgit but does not exceed 5,000 ringgit."

EA 69B(3) states "Save for Parts XV and XVI which shall apply with the necessary modifications, the provisions of this Act shall not apply to the employees referred to in subsection (1)." (or put another way "... this Act SHALL apply to those NOT referred to in subsection (1)")

For someone earning say RM6,000, it seems 69B(1) excludes from EA;
but 69B(3) seems to include. Is my interpretation correct? If not then what law governs those earning more than RM5,000?

Thank you,

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KL Siew
06/07/2011 09:29:08
No, it simply means for those with salary more than RM1500 but less than RM5000, they can enjoy the protections provided under Parts XV and XVI but other Parts of the Act like those providing leave, sick leave, working hours and so on, are not applicable to them. This category of employees, not to mention those earning more than RM5000 will have to sue in civil courts for any complaint that the Labour Office has no power under those Parts XV and XVI.
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06/07/2011 17:30:07
Mr Siew,
Again thank you for you prompt response.
Also for your enlightening commentary.
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