Considering the difficulties of Chinese labor laws and high employer liabilities, a company should take special care while drafting a part-time employment contract in China. From hiring to termination to compensation, the employment law of the People Republic of China covers every aspect of employment and there is no room to enforce new mechanism in addition to these statutory mechanisms.
According to China’s Labor Contract Law, professionals working no more than 4 hours daily, 24 hours weekly for the same employer are considered part-time staff. This applies to:
- Seasonal Jobs
- Temporary Jobs
- Online Jobs
An oral agreement between the employer and part-time employees is termed legal in China. However, China business lawyers suggest to that written contract should be there to avoid any conflict in the future. It will be to the parties’ interests to do so. In case a part-time employee is getting a full-time position, a labor contract becomes mandatory.
If the employment relationship is part-time, employers are not required to pay contributions to social or medical insurance. They are still required to make contributions for industrial injury insurance. Although the implementation varies by municipality and province, it is mandatory that the foreign employers must now contribute to the social insurance system of their part-time employees. The rule requires that along with the full-time employees, foreign companies need to enroll their part-time employees in one of the five social insurance programs from the following:
I. Basic Pension
II. Basic Medical Insurance
III. Work-Related Injury Insurance
IV. Unemployment Compensation
V. Maternity Insurance
Many places in China (e.g., Beijing, Shenzhen) mandate a 15 day payment cycle for part-time employees, which differs from the rules for full-time employees who are usually paid monthly.
Chinese law allows either party to terminate the labor contract at any time, without prior notice nor justification. In addition, employers are not required to pay severance upon the termination of part-time employees.
Multinational corporations must localize their global employment policies and relevant practices in view of the special requirements of Chinese employment law. A company employing part-time employees should be aware of heightened risks for IP security, as well as potential conflicts of interest that come if someone is working two jobs at once.