Frequently Asked Questions about
The Employment Ordinance, Cap. 57
End of Year Payment

Q1. Is an employer required to pay year end double pay to his employees? Answer
Q2. If an employee resigns in the course of a payment period / before the expiry of the payment period, should the employer pay to him end of year payment on a pro rata basis? Answer
Q3. If an employee is dismissed before the expiry of the payment period, is he entitled to pro rata end of year payment? Answer

 
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Q1. Is an employer required to pay year end double pay to his employees?
A1. There is no legal requirement under the Employment Ordinance for an employer to pay end of year payment, which includes bonus and double pay.

End of year payment should be agreed between an employer and an employee. If such payment is included in the terms of employment, the employer is contractually bound to pay end of year payment to the employee.

End of year payment does not include payment which is of a gratuitous nature or is payable at the discretion of the employer.

For employment contracts made after 27 June 1997, it is presumed that an annual payment is not of a gratuitous nature and is not payable only at the discretion of the employer unless a written term or condition expresses an intention to the contrary. This provision does not apply to contracts made before 27 June 1997.

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Q2. If an employee resigns in the course of a payment period / before the expiry of the payment period, should the employer pay to him end of year payment on a pro rata basis?
A2.

An employee, who resigns before the payment period expires, is not entitled to pro rata end of year payment unless the contract provides otherwise. The payment period shall be the period specified in the employment contract, or a lunar year if it is not specified.

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Q3. If an employee is dismissed before the expiry of the payment period, is he entitled to pro rata end of year payment?
A3. An employee who has been employed under a continuous contract for not less than 3 months in a payment period and who is dismissed by the employer (except in cases of summary dismissal due to the employee's serious misconduct) is eligible for pro rata end of year payment.

For the purpose of calculating the qualifying length of service required for pro rata end of year payment, any probation period, subject to a maximum of 3 months, is excluded.  However, for the purpose of calculating the entitlement of pro rata end of year payment for the qualified employees, the whole period of employment including the probation period, shall be taken into account.

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