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What are the requirements relating to advertising positions?

Employers cannot publish untrue or false recruitment ads. Where employers contravene this rule, the labour administrative authority may order the employer to correct its behaviour and impose a fine of up to Rmb1,000. If such untrue or false ads cause damages to the parties concerned, the employers should also compensate their losses.

Background checks

What can employers do with regard to background checks and inquiries in relation to the following:

In practice, when recruiting new staff, employers can verify a candidate’s basic personal information, education, work experience, reputation, credibility and other relevant information.

Employers can, among other things:

  • conduct their own investigation;
  • employ an external agency to conduct the investigation; or
  • request employees to provide relevant information or documents.

In practice, requesting staff to provide relevant information or documents and getting them to declare their authenticity can help to reduce the risk for employers and enable them to recruit effectively.

(a) Criminal records?

Employers can request employees to provide a copy of their criminal record for positions where, under the law, no criminal history is a prerequisite. Otherwise, there are no explicit legal grounds for employers to request an employee to provide a copy of his or her criminal record.

(b) Medical history?

In general, it is impractical to obtain an employee’s medical history. However, it is normal practice to ask an employee to provide a recent medical report.

(c) Drug screening?

Although seldom required by employers in China, employees can required to undergo drug screening.

(d) Credit checks?

Employers can obtain publicly available information concerning dishonest people (ie, people who have refused to perform court judgments). Other credit information must be provided by the employee.

(e) Immigration status?

Employers can ask employees to provide a copy of their residency permit, identity card or passport, among other things.

(f) Social media?

Employers can search for employees on Microblogging, WeChat and all other social media platforms.

(g) Other?

Employers can ask employees to provide references or recommendations from previous employers.


Wages and working time Pay

Is there a national minimum wage and, if so, what is it?

Yes – there is a minimum monthly wage for full-time employees and a minimum hourly wage for part-time employees. Local governments adjust the minimum wage standards annually, taking into account:

  • the cost of living;
  • average wage levels; and
  • the level of economic development in the relevant region.

Are there restrictions on working hours?

Yes – under the Regulation on Employee Working Hours, working hours cannot exceed eight hours a day or 40 hours a week.

Hours and overtime

What are the requirements for meal and rest breaks?

As there are no special requirements concerning meal and rest breaks, this is up to an employer’s discretion. However, employers are expected to be reasonable in this regard.

How should overtime be calculated?

The Labour Law states that employers can extend working hours following negotiations with trade unions or employees due to production and management needs. Overtime generally cannot exceed one hour a day. In special circumstances, overtime can be up to three hours a day, but it cannot exceed 36 hours a month.

What exemptions are there from overtime?

Under the Labour Law, it is possible to extend working hours in certain circumstances without the aforementioned constraints in the event of:

  • natural disasters, incidents or other reasons which threaten employees’ lives, health or property and require emergency management;
  • the malfunction of production facilities, transport lines and public facilities which affect production and the public interest and require timely repair; and
  • other circumstances, as stated in the law and administrative rules and regulations.

Is there a minimum paid holiday entitlement?

Under the Regulations on Paid Annual Leave of Employees:

  • employees who have worked between one and 10 years are entitled to five days’ annual leave;
  • employees who have worked between 10 and 20 years are entitled to 10 days’ annual leave; and
  • employees who have worked for more than 20 years are entitled to 15 days’ annual leave.

What are the rules applicable to final pay and deductions from wages?

Employers must withhold or deduct personal income tax, social security contributions and housing funds before paying an employee’s salary.

Record keeping

What payroll and payment records must be maintained?

Employers must record in writing the amount of wages paid, the date on which they were paid and the recipient’s name and signature. These records must be saved for more than two years for future reference. When paying wages, employers must provide employees with a list of their earnings to date.

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