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Are there any laws governing Paternity Leave?

There is no legislation governing Paternity Leave. However, provisions for Paternity Leave are usually contained in the Company’s policy, the contract of employment or, where applicable, the Collective Agreement.

How long is the period of Maternity Leave?

As at 22nd May, 2012, the Maternity Leave has been increased to fourteen (14) weeks. (Please review article on Maternity Leave for further details)

Is Bereavement and Casual Leave a legal entitlement?

Bereavement Leave is not a legal entitlement. However, provisions for this type of Leave are usually contained in the Company’s policy, the contract of employment or, where applicable, the Collective Agreement.

Who can represent a worker at a disciplinary hearing?

A worker is allowed to attend his disciplinary hearing with any representative of his choice. This person can be either a Union representative (whether or not the Company is unionised), a legal representative (e.g. an Attorney-at-Law), a co-worker, a friend etc.

Where the Company is guided by a Collective Agreement, provisions for representation (including the number of representatives permitted) are usually included in this document.

How long must a worker be away from the job without permission before I can conclude that he has abandoned his job?

The Company may set its own time frame for determining job abandonment. However, the recognised time frame is usually three (03) consecutive working days. (Please review article on Job Abandonment for further details).

Can an employee who is also a Union representative be disciplined?

An employee who holds the position of Branch Official/Shop Steward can be disciplined for misconduct or breaches of the Company’s policy. However, where such an employee was acting in his/her capacity of Branch Official/Shop Steward at the time of the infraction, disciplinary action should not be taken against the employee and same should be referred to the Union for their intervention. For information, please contact us.

How much is the national Minimum Wage?

Effective 01st January, 2015, the Minimum Wage in Trinidad and Tobago is fifteen ($15.00) per hour.

If someone resigns from his employment, do I have to pay him for his years of service?

Unless provisions for such a payment are contained in a Collective Agreement, contract of employment or Company policy, an employee who resigns is not entitled to be paid for his/her service.

Can an employer challenge a medical certificate (Sick Leave)?

Where he has reasonable suspicion, an employer has the right to challenge/question a medical certificate submitted by his employee. He must, however, obtain proof from his own medical expert for his challenge to be effective.

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