Nigeria's labour relations policy has shifted from the principle of voluntarism to the labour and management relations: in short it is a theory of industrial. Employment & Labour Law in Nigeria covering issues of, Terms and Conditions of Employee Representation and Industrial Relations. 3. 2, No. 2, pp. ISSN: (Print), (Online) nature of labour management relations in Nigeria, resulting in continuous labour disputes.
Employment & labour law in Nigeria
The employment relationship Country specific laws What laws and regulations govern the employment relationship? The primary legislation that regulates the employment of persons in Nigeria is the Labour Act. In addition, the following also apply: Who do these cover, including categories of worker? The Industrial Training Fund Act applies to every employer in Nigeria which employs more than five persons, or which employs fewer than five persons but has an annual turnover of up to N50 million.
The National Health Insurance Scheme Act applies to employers which have a minimum of 10 employees, while the Immigration Act applies to employers which employ foreign nationals and to expatriate employees.
Other than the Labour Act, no specific law sets out what factors would be considered in ascertaining whether an individual is an employee or an independent contractor.
Contracts Must an employment contract be in writing? Section 7 1 of the Labour Act requires employers to provide a contract to employees within three months of commencement of the employment relationship.
Are any terms implied into employment contracts? Yes, terms established by conduct such as the payment of bonuses can be implied into an employment contract. In addition, the statutory provisions set out in the Labour Act, if not expressly reflected in the contract between an employer and an employee, are implied into the employment contract.
No law requires parties to an employment contract to submit to mandatory arbitration. Parties, however, must arbitrate any dispute arising from the terms of an employment contract, if the contract contains a valid arbitration clause. How can employers make changes to existing employment agreements? This is subject to the nature of the proposed change but, generally, employers must obtain the consent of each individual employee in order to vary the terms of an employment contract.
Foreign workers Is a distinction drawn between local and foreign workers? An employer which wishes to employ foreign nationals must obtain a specific authorisation that approves the maximum number of expatriates the employer can engage, their job designations and the duration of such employment.
Employers must show that there are no suitably qualified Nigerian employees for the positions to be occupied by expatriates and, where approval is granted, Nigerians are expected to be trained to fill the positions over time. Recruitment Advertising What are the requirements relating to advertising positions?
No specific laws limit or restrict employers from advertising positions. However, employers which wish to employ expatriates usually advertise positions for the employment of foreign nationals only if no Nigerian nationals are qualified for such positions. Background checks What can employers do with regard to background checks and inquiries in relation to the following: Employers can engage a service provider to conduct background checks on potential employees.
Employers may also apply to the Nigerian police force to ascertain whether an employee has a criminal record or apply to the competent court for a judgment in respect of a decided criminal matter.
However, employers cannot access criminal records if such records will result in the identification of a juvenile offender, as these records are confidential and closed to third parties.
In practice, such tests are conducted by the employer submitting an application to any of the credit bureau companies in Nigeria. Any employer that intends to employ a foreign national must obtain an expatriate quota approval from the Federal Ministry of the Interior.
This approval permits a company to employ non-Nigerians for specifically approved job designations for a specified duration, usually two years in the first instance.
The employer will require either document to apply for an ECOWAS residence card, which enables the employees to live and work in Nigeria. Employers can also access information held by a public institution ie, a legislative, executive, judicial, administrative or advisory body of the government. This access is permitted under the Freedom of information Act In order to access such information, the employer must submit an application to the institution. The employer need not demonstrate specific interest in the information in respect of which the application is made.
However, this right is not absolute and the institution may deny access to the information where it contains personal information defined in the act as any official information held about an identifiable person, not including information that bears on the public duties of public employees and officials. Wages and working time Pay Is there a national minimum wage and, if so, what is it? Are there restrictions on working hours?
The Labour Act provides that normal working hours in any undertaking will be fixed in one of the following ways: In practice, the usual daily working hours are eight to nine hours, with a one-hour lunch break.
Hours and overtime What are the requirements for meal and rest breaks? The Labour Act provides that every employee who works for six hours or more a day is entitled to one hour off for meals. Where the work involves continuous strain or is particularly trying in other ways, in addition to the one-hour meal break the employee is also allowed short breaks during working hours. How should overtime be calculated? The Labour Act does not expressly order the payment of overtime.
However, this obligation can be inferred from a combined reading of Sections 11 913 7 and 19 of the act.Overview of the Federal Service Labor Management Relations Statute, PT1
In practice, in sectors that are predominantly unionised eg, the manufacturing and oil and gas sectors overtime payments are negotiated by the trade unions and employers usually pay overtime at the negotiated rates. Otherwise, overtime payments are as agreed between the parties to the employment contract. What exemptions are there from overtime?
Any exemptions from overtime are as provided in the employment contract. In practice, senior executives are usually not entitled to overtime payments.
Is there a minimum paid holiday entitlement?
Yes, under the Labour Act an employee is entitled to at least six days of annual leave for every 12 months of employment. What are the rules applicable to final pay and deductions from wages? The Labour Act does not prescribe specific rules in this respect.
Employment & labour law in Nigeria - Lexology
Record keeping What payroll and payment records must be maintained? Under the Labour Act employers must maintain records that indicate the sums paid to employees.
In addition, for taxation purposes, employers must maintain records that indicate the total sums paid to employees and the deductions made from salaries. Protected categories a Age? Children are defined as persons under the age of 18 years. The law requires employers which employ up to persons to: The Constitution prohibits discrimination on the grounds of political opinion.
Family and medical leave What is the position in relation to family and medical leave? Yes, under section 54 4 of the Labour Act, employers are prohibited from terminating the contract of any female Worker who is absent due to maternity leave, or who remains absent from her work for a longer period as a result of illness which arose out of her pregnancy or confinement and which renders her unfit for work. Are employees entitled to compensation on dismissal and if so how is compensation calculated?
The general position is that Nigerian employers are entitled to terminate a contract of employment at any time and without stating the reason or cause for doing so, provided that the appropriate notice of termination is given to the employee or the employee is paid a salary in lieu of such notice. Where the termination is for business-related reasons, such termination may be treated as being a redundancy. There is no corresponding statutory obligation for Non-Workers in relation to the computation of redundancy payments and whether they would be entitled to receive any redundancy payments is subject to the terms of their respective contracts of employment.
Employment & Labour Law | Nigeria | ICLG
If the dismissal is not for cause, it would be termed a termination and an employer is required to comply with the terms of the contract including the notice requirements under the contract. If a disciplinary tribunal is constituted, the tribunal must be independent and impartial and must comply with the rules of natural justice and principles of fair hearing.
Where the allegations are of a criminal nature, the same burden of proof applies as in criminal cases i. What are the remedies for a successful claim? If the employee is successful, the NICN has been known to award significant damages to such an employee and in some cases the court has ordered the employer to reinstate the appointment of the employee.
Employers can settle claims before or after they are initiated and before judgment is entered in the claim. If the employees to be dismissed are Workers under the Labour Act, and the dismissals are not connected to the conduct of the employees, such dismissals would be regarded as a redundancy, and the employer must: There is no corresponding statutory requirement for Non-Workers. In relation to Workers, if the employer does not comply with its statutory obligation, this could be a ground on which the Workers may challenge the validity of the mass dismissals.
If the Workers institute an action, this would delay the disengagement process until the completion of the action.