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Introduction to Taipei Labor Rights and Interests Fund

       Protection of worker’s basic rights and aids for solving labor-management disputes are considered by Taipei City Government as an important policy of protecting labor rights and interests. Since May 1, 2001, the “Taipei Labor Rights and Interests Fund” (TLRIF) has been established. “Taipei City Ordinance for Revenues, Expenditures, Safeguard and Utilization of Labor Rights and Interests Fund” and “Regulation for Subsidy of Taipei City Labor Rights and Interests Fund” were formulated.

       The preceding laws refer to the workplace located in Taipei City or to an employee whose household is registered in Taipei for more than 4 months from when the labor-management dispute occurs. Those who are filing a lawsuit against the employer for wrongful termination, closing the business, workplace disaster or other serious labor-management dispute can file an application for aid for Court costs, lawyer’s fees, living expenses, compulsory enforcement costs and etc. during the litigation period.

The subsidy amount by the TLRIF is derived from the following:
 

  1. The subsidy of Court charges and compulsory enforcement cost shall be considered in accordance with the exact amount imposed by the court. The payment is based on the receipt.
  2. Lawyer’s fees are based on either an individual application or a joint application. The former is subsidized for no more than NT$50,000 per trial, per compulsory enforcement and verdict process. The latter is subsidized for no more than NT$100,000 per trial, per compulsory enforcement and verdict process.
  3. Living expenses are subsidized monthly for a full amount or the difference in living expenses for each person during the lawsuit and verdict period.
3.1. Subsidy standard: The subsidy for the total living expenses is subject to 1.2 times of the legal minimum legal wage that is to be awarded. The difference in living expenses as it is applied to those whose income is less than 1.2 times of the legal minimum wage. The subsidy is calculated in terms of the difference between work pay and 1.2 times of the legal minimum wage.
3.2. Subsidy duration: A general worker is subsidized for their living expenses during the litigation period for no more than 9 months per trial, and with a maximum subsidy of not more than 2 years. A supervisor of the labor union is subsidized for their living expenses during the litigation period for no more than 1 year per trial, and with a maximum subsidy of no more than 3 years. During the ruling period the maximum subsidy of living expenses is no more than 6 months.
 
       Article 5 of the “Taipei City Ordinance for Revenues, Expenditures, Safeguard and Utilization of Labor Rights and Interests Fund” was amended June 23, 2017, in which there is a newly added subsidy for the labor-management dispute caused by the wrongful termination that is regulated by paragraph 2 of article 35 of the Labor Union Act.

       According to the Act for Settlement of Labor-Management Disputes, the worker can file an application for the costs of the lawyer’s fees during the ruling period and the living expenses during the verdict period. Furthermore, “Regulation for Subsidy of Taipei City Labor Rights and Interests Fund” was amended January 26, 2018 in a bid to broaden the support for the collective labor organization and help workers make an effort for their labor rights and interests through lawsuits and the verdict process.

       From 2001 to 2018, Taipei City Government has accepted 1,176 cases for their approval, among which 783 cases have been approved to be subsidized. There are 3,852 workers in total being subsidized with the total subsidy amount of NT$89,943,471. The subsidy was categorized with 570 cases for wrongful termination, 102 cases for occupational disaster, 26 cases for closing a business and the rest, 85 cases, for other serious events.