The Gen XY Lifestyle

Hiring a domestic helper made easy

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HL Assurance shares a list of frequently asked questions about hiring a domestic helper.

Relentless and demanding, working life in Singapore can be challenging. On top of that, other social demands take up so much time that household chores become an afterthought in the heads of many Singaporeans.

With that, domestic helpers have become a staple in Singaporean society, with many households depending on them to help alleviate their responsibilities at home.

Hiring a domestic helper might seem as the simple solution to household untidiness, but the process of hiring a helper might not be as straightforward as it sounds.

Apart from her salary and lodging, here is a list some frequently asked questions that we have the answers for regarding welcoming a domestic helper into your household.

What are the insurance policies that a Female Domestic Worker (FDW) must have to start work in Singapore?

You must ensure that she has a medical insurance with coverage of at least SGD 15,000 per year. Another Personal accident insurance plan is required as well, with a sum assured for SGD 60,000 per year that covers sudden, unforeseen and unexpected incidents resulting in permanent disability or death. Do ensure that the plan does not contain extra exclusion clauses that are not in the Employment of Foreign Manpower Regulations. A SGD 5,000 security bond per helper and levy charges need to be fulfilled on top of the insurance policies for your FDW to start work in Singapore.

*Editor’s note: From Jan 2023, MOM will change mandatory requirements to mandating medical (not Personal Accident) coverage of SGD 60,000.

What are the key points about the medical examination employers of FDWs need to know?

As mandated by the Ministry of Manpower, your domestic helper needs to complete her medical examination by a Singapore-registered doctor within 2 weeks of her arrival in Singapore. The screening will test for four infections – tuberculosis, HIV, syphilis, and malaria. Make sure that she brings along the medical examination form for her tests and note that she needs to pass the examination or will be sent home. This medical screening is due every six months. These medical expenses are estimated to cost between SGD 500 to SGD 800 annually, due to the need for two tests a year. This applies to FDWs below 50, those above 50 years old are exempt from this six monthly check ups.

Are there any differences with a transfer FDW who is already in Singapore?

domestic helper

The transfer of a FDW is slightly different from signing one straight from the agency. Before applying for the transfer of employment, do check with the current employer that the domestic helper has gone for her six-monthly medical examination. Following, consent of the current employer for the transfer is required. This can be completed by visiting FDW eService and completing the task. After consent is approved, a new application for the helper’s work permit must be completed, with both you and the domestic helper needed with signing on the declaration form.

Lastly, the permit will be issued. Arrange the date for the domestic helper’s transfer with her current employer and access FDW eService again to get her new work permit issued, upload the completed declaration form, and print her temporary work permit. Do note that you will also need to purchase a security bond and buy a medical and personal accident for your new domestic helper.

Are there insurance policies for FDWs that can help employers save on cost or time?

It is worth considering cost-saving perks when on the lookout for insurance coverage for your domestic helper, which will save you both cost and time. Things such as outpatient medical and dental benefits, protection against unexpected expenses (such as maid termination and rehiring expenses), subsidised rates in medical examinations, and enhanced medical benefit riders that cover infectious diseases are all things to look out for when searching for the right insurance coverage for your FDW. For instance, HL Assurance is offering a plan that covers all the above, with an added 50 percent off six-monthly medical examinations at preferred clinics once you take up their plan. This will both ensure that your domestic helper gets the protection she needs, and gives you financial savings on both medical as well as dental costs.

Article contributed by HL Assurance. Photo by KINN Living and by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash