On September 1, 2016, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security issued the Measures for Publicizing Acts in Material Violation of Labor Protection Laws (the “Measures”), which will take effect on January 1, 2017.

Under the Measures, any employer who commits material violations of labor protection laws will see those acts publicized on the local government’s official website or in the media, such as a major local newspaper, TV, etc. Material violations will be publicized on a regular basis by the national or provincial authorities every six months, and by municipal and county authorities on a quarterly basis, though such violations may be publicized immediately when deemed necessary by the government. Once publicized, these material violations will become a part of the violator’s credit record.

An employer could face this penalty if it:

  • deducts from or delays payment of employee labor remuneration without cause or faces judicial assessment of criminal liability for refusal to pay labor remuneration;
  • fails to purchase social insurance or to pay social insurance premiums;
  • violates the provisions on working hours, rest and leave;
  • fails to provide special protection for female employees and underage employees;
  • uses child labor;
  • violates labor protection laws causing serious adverse social influences; or
  • commits other acts in material violation of labor protection laws.

Key Take-Away Points:

These Measures, along with a separate set of measures issued in July this year (Please See August 2016 Newsletter), signal the national government’s intent to strengthen the administrative enforcement regime against material violations of labor protection laws, though it remains to be seen how actively local labor authorities will actually use these enforcement measures. Employers in any case should exercise greater care to comply with labor protection laws and regulations to avoid the negative consequences of material violations being publicized.