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Sick Leave (Hong Kong)

Entitlement and eligibility for Sick Leave for employees in Hong Kong

Nicholas avatar
Written by Nicholas
Updated over a week ago

Employees under a continuous contract accumulate paid sickness days:

  • 2 days for each completed month during the first 12 months of employment

  • 4 days for each completed month thereafter

  • Days are accumulated throughout the employment period, not exceeding 120 days at any one time

Two Categories of Paid Sickness Days

*The medical certificate should specify the number of days on which, and the nature of the sickness or injury on account of which, the employee is unfit for work

An employer is prohibited from terminating the contract of employment of an employee on his paid sickness day, except in cases of summary dismissal due to the employee's serious misconduct.

Sickness Allowance

Is entitled if:

  • sick leave taken is at least 4 consecutive days (unless any day off is taken by a female employee for her pregnancy check-ups, post confinement medical treatment or miscarriage)

  • sick leave is supported by an appropriate medical certificate

  • the employee has accumulated sufficient number of paid sickness days

Is not entitled if:

  • the employee, without reasonable excuse, refuses treatment by a company doctor of a medical scheme recognised by the Director of Health or disregards the advice of the doctor.

    (if the recognised scheme of medical treatment operated by an employer does not cover treatment from a certain medical discipline, the employee may choose to receive treatment from any registered medical practitioner, registered Chinese medicine practitioner or registered dentist under that particular discipline)

  • the sickness day falls on a statutory holiday on which the employee is entitled to holiday pay

  • compensation is payable under the Employees' Compensation Ordinance.

Daily Rate of Sickness Allowance

The daily rate of sickness allowance is 80% of the average daily wages earned by an employee in the 12-month period preceding the first day of sickness. If an employee is employed for less than 12 months, the calculation shall be based on the shorter period. 

Sickness allowance should be paid to the employee not later than the normal pay day.

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