What You Need to Know About Mandatory Employee Insurance
Are you an employer in Singapore? If so, it's important to know that the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) requires certain mandatory employee insurance, such as work injury compensation (WIC) insurance. According to the Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA), employees can file a claim if they are injured in a work accident or contract a disease due to their job. In 2020, MOM has updated the WICA for a simpler and more efficient claims process. Here are some important updates you should know about:
1. Change in salary threshold
As a business owner, you are mandated to purchase WIC Insurance for certain employees. From 1st April 2021 onwards, all non-manual employees earning up to $2,600 per month would require WIC insurance.
Before 1 Apr 2020
From 1 Apr 2020
From 1 Apr 2021
Salary threshold for non-manual employees
2. Increase in payout limits for policy benefits
Next, the payout limits for Death, Total Permanent Incapacity, and Medical Expenses have also increased.
|Limits||Previous Limits||New Limits (after 1 Jan 2020)|
|Total (100%) Permanent Incapacity||Min||$88,000||$97,000|
|Medical Expenses||Up to $36,000|
or 1 year from date of accident
|Up to $45,000 |
or 1 year from date of accident
3. Extension of coverage for employees on light duty
Also, employees on light duties due to work injuries will now also be compensated for their income loss based on their Average Monthly Earnings.
4. Discontinuation of project WIC policies
As of 1 September 2020, Project WIC policies are no longer WICA-approved and only annual WIC policies will be available.
5. WIC policies must be confirmed/renewed on time
To ensure employers maintain adequate WIC insurance coverage at all times, MOM checks on whether firms have WIC insurance coverage as required under WICA 2019.
To avoid an infringement, employers need to confirm insurance contracts and provide the required information to the insurer at least 21 days before policy commencement.
- UEN (For group policies that covers multiple UENs, kindly provide the information for each UEN separately)
- Nature of business
- Aggregated headcount of employees
- Aggregated annual wages
- Occupation of employees
6. Fines and penalties
Finally, it is important to know that fines and penalties will be imposed by MOM for employer breaches of legislative requirements:
|Failure by employers to maintain compulsory WIC Insurance||S$10,000 fine and/or 12 months’ jail||S$20,000 fine and/or 12 months’ jail|
|Illegal deduction of salary by employers to defray insurance costs||S$5,000 fine and/or 6 months’ jail||S$10,000 fine and/or 6 months’ jail|
In addition to WIC insurance, employers must also provide Foreign Worker Medical Insurance (FWMI) coverage of at least $60,000 per year for each work permit and S-Pass holder. This should cover inpatient care and day surgery, including hospital expenses for conditions that may not be work-related.
It's important to note that WICA and FWMI are not substitutes for each other and having one does not exempt you from needing the other. While there are situations whereby both types of policies could cover, they ultimately cate to different needs. If you're unsure whether you fulfil MOM requirements for your employees, consider seeking advice from an expert.
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