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Severance Pay Government University


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I have been working at my university for 23 years now on a rolling 1 year contract and I have been told that this is my last contract due to my age. The university has said that they don't pay severance pay. I know they try to keep expenses for foreign teachers as low as possible by not involving us in many of the seminars and courses etc, and they even tried to cut my social security payment a couple of years ago.

 

I have read many places about teachers at private schools and government schools receiving severance pay, but I read somewhere (I can't find it now) that teachers at government universities do not receive severance pay. This would seem strange as we are not employed with any of the advantages of government officers and in fact just "basic workers". 

 

Has anyone any knowledge of government university teachers receiving severance pay?

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2 hours ago, puchooay said:

There have been so many posts about this in the past.

 

They usually end up as a "Yes, you can" and a "No, you can't" arguement.

 

In truth, I don't think there is really a definitive answer.

 

Go to the labour office. Show them as much information as you can about your employment history and see what they say.

 

Yes, I have seen many posts about this, but as you say I cannot find a definite answer.

I remember on Ajarn.com forum someone saying that he was about to retire from a government university and he would keep us posted, but never saw any more.

 

It often seems that government universities consider themselves outside the law.

Anyway yes I will follow your advice when the time comes. I just thought it would be easier if we could find just one definite "yes".

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It's not that you are not a government official /civil servant

Government as an employer are excempt from labour laws, so no, they don't have to pay you 

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Hello.

 

Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?

 

How old are you? 

 

What qualifications do you have?

 

Do you have any kind of pension?  I assume you got nothing but your pay from the university?

 

What are your plans now?

 

How do you feel about all this?  Do you feel like they used you when you were useful to them and now they're tossing you aside?

 

Were you aware of this when you began your career?  If not, would you have done anything differently if you knew back then?

 

Sorry if this is too many questions.  Feel free to ignore me.  Or send a DM if you prefer.

 

I'm curious about careers working in Thailand and if there's any way to actually make it work without being semi-retired or having other revenue streams.  It feels like you could just about scrape by working in education in Thailand, and have a wonderful and fulfilling time at work, but when you reach a certain age, you're finished.

 

I would really value your insight.

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47 minutes ago, digbeth said:

It's not that you are not a government official /civil servant

Government as an employer are excempt from labour laws, so no, they don't have to pay you 

Incorrect in this case. Foreign teachers are not employed by the government but by the school/university. There is a fundamental difference.

 

Therefore they would/could be entitled to severance.

Edited by puchooay
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57 minutes ago, BangkokReady said:

Hello.

 

Do you mind if I ask you a few questions?

 

How old are you? 

 

What qualifications do you have?

 

Do you have any kind of pension?  I assume you got nothing but your pay from the university?

 

What are your plans now?

 

How do you feel about all this?  Do you feel like they used you when you were useful to them and now they're tossing you aside?

 

Were you aware of this when you began your career?  If not, would you have done anything differently if you knew back then?

 

Sorry if this is too many questions.  Feel free to ignore me.  Or send a DM if you prefer.

 

I'm curious about careers working in Thailand and if there's any way to actually make it work without being semi-retired or having other revenue streams.  It feels like you could just about scrape by working in education in Thailand, and have a wonderful and fulfilling time at work, but when you reach a certain age, you're finished.

 

I would really value your insight.

 

I am 67 years old. Yes, I have a private pension and a little government pension, so it's not really about the money. It is the principle of the matter. 

Yes, they have treated some foreigners very badly and a few of the foreigners have contacted lawyers and usually the cases were settled out of court.

 

The university only pays salary and basically ignores the foreign staff. 

 

I guess I was "tricked" into staying there by the fact that they promised me that the university would be going autonomous and that we would receive a much higher salary. Of course the increase in salary never came and I regret that I didn't move on when I was younger. I think nowadays the younger staff can see the situation and they move on. 

 

I have also been very lucky in the fact that they have kept me for so long and that we have the freedom to do outside work. I have had a couple of well paid part time jobs., but Covid has put a temporary stopper on them. The private university would probably keep me on as a part time teacher (the salary is higher than my full time job), and as I enjoy my work I may just stay with them for a year or two.

 

I don't think anyone can make a career at a government university. You are a foreigner and are basically outside the system. Thee is no chance of career development or advancement. Obviously this is different in private schools and universities.

 

My plans are to relax, hopefully travel and enjoy my life.

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54 minutes ago, puchooay said:

Incorrect in this case. Foreign teachers are not employed by the government but by the school/university. There is a fundamental difference.

 

Therefore they would/could be entitled to severance.

 

Actually the university is now autonomous, but the budget for the foreigners comes from the Ministry of Finance.

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2 minutes ago, petedk said:

Yes, they have treated some foreigners very badly and a few of the foreigners have contacted lawyers and usually the cases were settled out of court.

 

Very sad.  99% of these stories have this kind of tone.  I've seen it, been a part of it, and luckily I only taught for a few years in the past and moved on.    

 

I never read, "foreigners were treated great."    lol

 

definitely try to get all the money you can.   they tried to exact your soul for 100 baht a week, so smile and do the best you can.   The "best" is when they make you feel guilty for getting paid........yea, that's a nice touch.   

 

it probably costs them nothing if they say no.......but they will make bank if you simply say, "OK."   I would dedicate months on this, and then let it go if nothing happens.  

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5 hours ago, petedk said:

on a rolling 1 year contract

 

 

What does your contract say about your right to any severance pay?           Wouldn't such matters be covered   by your contract?

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9 minutes ago, Andy from Kent said:

 

 

What does your contract say about your right to any severance pay?           Wouldn't such matters be covered   by your contract?

I any country in the world contracts are only valid if they are not against the law. So even if it say no severance pay it is not actually sure that it means no severance pay because if a contract goes against the labor laws its invalid and labor laws take over. So the question is more about labor laws then contract.

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I recommend going to the Labour department and tell them your circumstances.  They can tell you whether you are entitled to severance or not. Take a Thai with you if communication may be difficult. You will be told here you can get severance, and someone else says you can't. So better to ask at the labour department. 

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18 hours ago, DavisH said:

I recommend going to the Labour department and tell them your circumstances.  They can tell you whether you are entitled to severance or not. Take a Thai with you if communication may be difficult. You will be told here you can get severance, and someone else says you can't. So better to ask at the labour department. 

 

I'm in agreement here. I doubt you're legally entitled but it's possible they'll throw you a bone if you have in fact been there 23 years. The labor department could be sympathetic as well.

 

If it's a good University let's say top 15 they might come to their senses and give you something.

 

This is not a case of a sociopathic teacher getting the <deleted> after a year or two.

 

Good luck

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2 hours ago, kynikoi said:

If it's a good University let's say top 15 they might come to their senses and give you something.

 

This is not a case of a sociopathic teacher getting the <deleted> after a year or two.

As usual, you try to make a thread into some kind of class thing.

 

Length of service is nothing to do with it. As, surpirsingly, behaviour isn't unless there is some kind of gross misconduct or the school have gone through the correct disciplinary procedure.

 

If a contract is not renewed and no notice was given, the teacher has a case. It doesn't matter if it is the best ranked university/school in the country or a smaller provincial one. Labour law is national. Not regional.

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On 6/20/2021 at 3:09 PM, Andy from Kent said:

 

 

What does your contract say about your right to any severance pay?           Wouldn't such matters be covered   by your contract?

Nothing in the contract about that.

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On 6/20/2021 at 9:09 AM, Andy from Kent said:

 

 

What does your contract say about your right to any severance pay?           Wouldn't such matters be covered   by your contract?

 

5 minutes ago, petedk said:

Nothing in the contract about that.

Probably not. There will be something about how the employee and employer must adhere to the labour laws.

 

That will include the notice periods that both need to give.

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29 minutes ago, puchooay said:

As usual, you try to make a thread into some kind of class thing.

 

Length of service is nothing to do with it. As, surpirsingly, behaviour isn't unless there is some kind of gross misconduct or the school have gone through the correct disciplinary procedure.

 

If a contract is not renewed and no notice was given, the teacher has a case. It doesn't matter if it is the best ranked university/school in the country or a smaller provincial one. Labour law is national. Not regional.

 

As usual you try to contort your opinion into something that isn't legal yet you drone on about  entitlement despite there being none. None in the contract none legally required. None.

 

Straight up. The guy is entitled to nothing. That's what he got.

 

You remind me of the type of person that attempts to twist laws to entirely favor themselves but never follows either the spirit or letter. Classic working poor / class attitude.

 

Rule 1 - work only at quality institutions with historic name recognition and top pay.

 

Yeah, some <deleted> rajabaht gonna be forking over 50k for this guy on an afterthought bc they're flush with money and realize the error of their ways. It matters more than you will sadly ever know.

Edited by kynikoi
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8 minutes ago, puchooay said:

 

Probably not. There will be something about how the employee and employer must adhere to the labour laws.

 

That will include the notice periods that both need to give.

 

You really haven't seen many contracts have you?

 

Some are four pages long and others like the one I'm currently on is barely a page.

 

It's such a laff you listing all the items that "should be" in his contract.

 

Please spare us your legal advice. None of it's worth a satang. You were wrong, dead wrong about the last severence issue - both Scott and the guy whose case it was even chimed in commenting you were off base and yet you still rode it into the ground. Don't worry, even a broken clock is right twice a day.

Edited by kynikoi
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On 6/20/2021 at 3:59 AM, petedk said:

 

I am 67 years old. Yes, I have a private pension and a little government pension, so it's not really about the money. It is the principle of the matter. 

Yes, they have treated some foreigners very badly and a few of the foreigners have contacted lawyers and usually the cases were settled out of court.

 

The university only pays salary and basically ignores the foreign staff. 

 

My plans are to relax, hopefully travel and enjoy my life.

Your best option is to not follow the generalized comments here and to go to the Labor Board now or very soon and get the " correct" answer from them so you know what the options are.   Now having said that the options could change between now and when you are released. Not saying that comments here may not be correct or helpful, no one knows your real complete situation. 

 

This situation is not uncommon and like many times in all industries, an initial response of " no we don't pay any thing" discourages the majority of people from pursuing it any farther and saves the money for the employer. 

 

You have nothing to lose by going to the Labor Board and getting info and direction. You dont want to miss out on something by waiting or find out you have other options that may help.

 

By the sounds of it your employer hasn't done you any favors over the term of your employment and probably taken advantage of you all along 

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2 hours ago, kynikoi said:

 

You really haven't seen many contracts have you?

 

Some are four pages long and others like the one I'm currently on is barely a page.

 

It's such a laff you listing all the items that "should be" in his contract.

 

Please spare us your legal advice. None of it's worth a satang. You were wrong, dead wrong about the last severence issue - both Scott and the guy whose case it was even chimed in commenting you were off base and yet you still rode it into the ground. Don't worry, even a broken clock is right twice a day.

You are a tad egotistic, aren't you?

 

If your claims are correct and your putting down of other posters justified, maybe you could post a link or, at least, provide some evidence, that no one has ever received severance for being dismissed, or not having a contract renewed, without the required notice.

 

If you cannot provide either of the above then I would suggest listening to others' experiences and knowledge of those who have received severance.

 

A quick search on here will give you some insight as to why your comments are just that, comments. Not facts.

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4 hours ago, youreavinalaff said:

quick search on here will give you some insight as to why your comments are just that, comments. Not facts.

Please provide the quick search. The other poster had stated the same but never provided any evidence. Sorry, can't prove a negative. You're asking me to prove that no one has ever received a payout on a one year contract. That would be everyone.

 

You and the other poster can provide the numerous accounts of posters challenging their contracts and being paid severence on one year contract with no stipulating clause. Knock yourself out. It is the other poster that has ridden this falsehood into the ground and constantly given posters misdirection and falsehood. The other poster at one time claimed a basis in law with invalid links to non related case law (not that precedent has any place in Thai jurisprudence).

Edited by kynikoi
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Contracts are usually reasonably short and do not generally include the provisions of the labor law.   Labor law takes precedence over a contract.   You cannot sign away your legal rights under the law in a contract. 

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16 minutes ago, Scott said:

Contracts are usually reasonably short and do not generally include the provisions of the labor law.   Labor law takes precedence over a contract.   You cannot sign away your legal rights under the law in a contract. 

 

I absolutely agree and never had stated otherwise. The 20 year teacher apparently has all manner of Thai law written into his ten page contract at ?? his 12k pm rajabaht job.

 

The heart of this discussion as so many others and that you yourself had testified that school's are not obligated to pay severence on one year (freelance) contracts. Thai teacher folklore common wisdom states that some freelance teacher at sometime in the past won a random something something.

 

A teacher gets what's in the teacher contract and that is nothing. Contacts must run multiple years and that is true for Thais as well. I don't even think farang can get contracts 2+ years through MoL for a wp or so I was once told.

 

I wish the OP the absolute best and would again encourage him to talk with his employer and go to the MoL because 23 years is a long time.

 

On the other hand he signed that contract 23 times I assume knowingly.

Edited by kynikoi
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11 minutes ago, kynikoi said:

 

I absolutely agree and never had stated otherwise. The 20 year teacher apparently has all manner of Thai law written into his ten page contract at ?? his 12k pm rajabaht job.

 

The heart of this discussion as so many others and that you yourself had testified that school's are not obligated to pay severence on one year (freelance) contracts. Thai teacher folklore common wisdom states that some freelance teacher at sometime in the past won a random something something.

 

A teacher gets what's in the teacher contract and that is nothing. Contacts must run multiple years and that is true for Thais as well. I don't even think farang can get contracts 2+ years through MoL for a wp or so I was once told.

 

I wish the OP the absolute best and would again encourage him to talk with his employer and go to the MoL because 23 years is a long time.

 

On the other hand he signed that contract 23 times I assume knowingly.

Please provide a link for what you say.

 

As Scott says Labour Law is more powerful than a contract.

 

You miss the point, a point that has been made several times.

 

Dismissal is relevant to the position not the employee. 

 

If an employee is dismissed or does not have their contract renewed but the position remains and another teacher is taken on, that is wrong in Thai labour law. That is what I was told by a labour department official.

 

Please provide evidence otherwise or stop the continual insults.

 

Btw, I don't gave a 10 page contract or a 12k job. Never have and never stated so. Just another of your many assumptions.

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Just now, puchooay said:

Please provide a link for what you say.

 

As Scott says Labour Law is more powerful than a contract.

 

You miss the point, a point that has been made several times.

 

Dismissal is relevant to the position not the employee. 

 

If an employee is dismissed or does not have their contract renewed but the position remains and another teacher is taken on, that is wrong in Thai labour law. That is what I was told by a labour department official.

 

Please provide evidence otherwise or stop the continual insults.

 

Btw, I don't gave a 10 page contract or a 12k job. Never have and never stated so. Just another of your many assumptions.

This is the exact same post you challenged me on last time around. The facts have not changed since. You simply cannot get it in your head first and foremost that allowing a contract to lapse (and in this case with good cause as the op is 60+ I think I recall) is not the same as terminating mid contract with prejudice. Not even close.

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45 minutes ago, kynikoi said:

 allowing a contract to lapse (and in this case with good cause as the op is 60+ I think I recall) is not the same as terminating mid contract with prejudice. Not even close.

That would be an opinion of yours.

 

I actually do know of someone who challenged this thought and won. It was the labour department that fought his case. There was no notice given that the contract would not be renewed and the position was re advertised. That was a violation of labour law.

Edited by youreavinalaff
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I wouldn't plan on Thailand being my endgame as a teacher. A few more years of this and my Thai wife and I are going back to the States. We'll have the family home, I'll have a choice of high schools or community colleges, and my wife will make a lot more in retail or hospitality than here currently.

 

The US state I plan on going to recognizes the Thai teaching license. With this, a letter of rec from my HoD, and taking a proficiency test, it becomes this state's high school teaching credential. I'd look into this for whereever the OP is going.

 

As OP teaches at a Rajabhat uni, he should have a Master's degree. With this you can teach at junior/community colleges in the US, a step below university, or whatever the equivalent is whereever he is. This coupled with his experience, should continue his teaching career back home.

 

Age shouldn't be a factor. When I went to community college before transferring to uni, I had some wonderful, older professors who brought their lifetime of experience to the classroom. Retired HS teachers, lawyers, cops, and therapists. The best kind of educators IMHO, whose steps I hope to be following in. Cheers and good luck.

Edited by CrunchWrapSupreme
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