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September 25, 2017

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Foreign spouses set to receive protected status in labor pension plan

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Bureau of Labor Insurance (BLI) yesterday said that foreign spouses will be included in the mandatory list of people to receive labor pension plan starting on Jan. 17 after the revised Labor Pension Act is executed.

The BLI said that starting from Jan. 17, all employers have to include all newly hired employees who are foreign spouses and meet the regulations of Labor Standards Act in their labor pension plans.

According to the BLI, all self-employed citizens will be included in the labor pension plan under a voluntary payment system.

The BLI said that the contribution rate by an employer to the labor pension per month shall not be less than 6 percent of employee's monthly wage and the pension will be saved in a personal account established by the bureau.

According to the BLI, there are around 30,000 foreign spouses who are currently employed and enrolled in the labor pension plan.

In order the protect their rights to receive labor pension, the BLI said, the bureau will include those foreign spouses into the new labor pension plan starting from Jan. 17 and notify employers regarding the changes.

The BLI said that if foreign spouses wish to remain in the old labor pension plan, they should notify their employers in written form before July 16 and the employers can submit the paperwork along with required information to the BLI, which will allow those who submit the paperwork to stay in the original labor pension plan.

However, the BLI said, once the foreign spouses choose to continue using the old labor pension plan, they will not be allowed to switch to the new plan.

Meanwhile, considering that people who are self-employed also wish to prepare for retired life, the BLI said the revised act also included them into the list of those who voluntarily contribute to the labor pension fund.

According to the BLI, when an employee is 60 years or older and has been working for at least 15 years, they can start to claim monthly pension payments.

The BLI also said that for those who have not reached 60 years of age but lost the ability to work, they do not have to submit documents to prove their conditions in order to claim their labor pension if they already receive disability benefits. According to the BLI, they only have to submit an application to claim their labor pension.

Under the new system, people may plan their pension by choosing between various insurance policies and mutual fund investments. People may choose mutual funds based on their ages and investment preferences. Mutual funds are categorized into target fund, lifecycle fund, active fund, conservative fund and balanced fund.

In the first seven months of last year, the labor insurance fund accumulated profits of NT$15.74 billion, with the labor pension fund accumulating profits of NT$46.42 billion.

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