The Ministry of Labor rendered the Lao-Dong-Fu-3-1030136648 Circular of January 13, 2015(hereinafter, the "Circular") to provide an interpretation regarding the issue of whether a business organization may impose mandatory retirement in accordance with Article 54, Paragraph 1 of the Labor Standards Act during the period of occupational accident treatment.
Article 54, Paragraph 1 of the Labor Standards Act provides: "An employer shall not force a worker to retire unless any of the following situations has occurred: (1) Where the worker attains the age of 65, or (2)Where the worker is unable to perform his/ her duties due to mental handicap or physical disability." Article 23, Subparagraph 2 of the Act for Protecting Workers of Occupational Accidents provides: "Employers may not issue an advance notice to terminate the labor contract with workers suffering occupational accidents except under any of the following conditions: …(2)After the termination of medical care for a worker suffering an occupational accident, a public medical institution appraises that the worker concerned is mentally deranged or physically disabled to be incapable of working."
According to the Circular, with respect to the issue of mandatory retirement imposed by employers on employees during the period of occupational accident treatment, if the workers are no longer competent for their work due to loss of mental capacity or physical disability during the discharge of their responsibilities, the employers shall not terminate the employment contract until the employees are determined by a public medical institution to have been so mentally and physically disabled that they are no longer competent for their work after their treatment is completed according to Article 23, Subparagraph 2 of the Act for Protecting Workers of Occupational Accidents . The employers shall not elect to compel the employees to retire in accordance with Article 54, Paragraph 1 of the Labor Standards Act.
In addition, the opinion that employers may impose mandatory retirement of employees during their occupational accident treatment period in the Tai-80-Lao-Dong-3-14427 Circular of June 12, 1991 and the Tai-89-Lao-Dong-3-0015888 Circular of April 25, 2000 from the former Council of Labor Affairs is no longer applicable according to the Circular.