Most Read Contributor in South Korea, February 2017
Furthering the Korean government's policy response to an
aging society and low birthrate, the 2014 amendment to the Labor
Standards Act permitting pregnant employees at critical points in
their pregnancy to request shorter working hours without a
reduction in pay has now become effective for all employers from
March 25, 2016.
Pregnant employees whose pregnancies are within the first 12
weeks, or whose pregnancies have extended past 36 weeks, may
request the employer to shorten the employee's workday by up to
two (2) hours per day, provided that employees whose normal workday
is fewer than eight (8) hours may not request a reduction to a
total of fewer than six (6) hours per day.
Employers are expressly prohibited from reducing pay for
employees exercising their right to request reduced working hours,
in accordance with the new Art. 74, clause 7.
Under the Presidential Enforcement Decree to the Labor Standards
Act, the employee shall notify the employer in writing of the fact
of her pregnancy, and her request for reduced working hours not
less than three (3) days before the reduced working hours are
desired to take effect. The employee shall furnish a doctor's
note certifying pregnancy, and detail her desired start and end
times for work. Documentation is not necessary when requesting
reduced working hours later in the same pregnancy.
The March 2014 amendment was effective for employers with 300
employees or more from Sept. 2014, and has become effective for all
employers from March 25, 2016.
Originally published in Labor & Employment News Alert,
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