Know your Labour Rights Vlogs

Access to JusticeDecember 19, 20161 CommentsKituo Cha Sheria

Are you employed or looking for employment? Then this is for you!

All you need to know about your labour rights!

You may watch your labour rights explained Haki Vlogs HERE>>


Types of workers >>>

  • Permanent Worker:
    • you have a written employment contract identifying you as a permanent worker
    • or if you do not have a written contract but you are paid at the end of 30 days.
  • Casual worker
    • You work for a short period of time – usually not more than24 hours and you are paid at the end of each day
    • You have no guarantee of being employed more than 24 hours and you can be dismissed at only one day’s notice
  • Fixed term –contract worker
    • You are employed for one determined fixed period of time which is more than one day
  • Any employment of 3 months or longer should have his/her contract in writing.
  • A worker who does not have a letter of appointment or a written employment contract will find it difficult to prove a right to benefits.
  • Oral Contracts are recognized under the Kenyan law.

Wages and Salary

  • Every worker is entitled to receive full payment for work done
  • In case of summary dismissal, wages are paid up to the date of dismissal
  • Every permanent worker is entitled to housing accommodation or housing allowance.
  • The rates for housing allowance or accommodation can be found on the current Year’s Wage Orders- Google – Kenya 2016 Year’s Wage Orders, click on Kenya Law.Org link and you will find a legal notice on the regulation of wages or click on
  • Minimum wage is determined by the job description and region of work. Those working in cities (Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu) earn more than those working in municipalities (Mavoko Town Council, Riuru Town Council, Limuru Town Council) and those working in areas that are neither cities nor municipalities earn less.

For example: Minimum Consolidated Wages by Region and Occupation in Kenya with effect from May 1, 2015

Occupation/Grade Region Minimum Wage per hour Minimum wage per day Minimum wage per month
Cleaners, Gardeners, General Workers, House servants, Children’s ayah, Sweepers, Day watchmen, Messengers Cities
(Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu)
97.90 527.10 10,954.70
Municipalities, Mavoko Town Council, Riuru Town Council, Limuru Town Council 89.50 484.30 10,107.10
All other areas (neither cities nor municipalities nor town councils) 54.70 296.20 5,844.20


What happens when an employer has not being paying minimum wages?

This is calculated based on the minimum wage set for the year. E,g you have a house help and you have been paying her KES 8000 per month since 2013.

Minimum wage for 2013/2014 for house helps was set at:  9785/= . So you owe your house help ( 9785-8000)* number of months worked in addition to her 8,000/= per month salary. In short you need to add him or her KES 1785 on top of the KES 8000 per month for the year 2013/2014.

Minimum wage for 2015/2016 for house helps was set at 10,954/=. So you owe your house help (10,954-8000) * number of months worked in addition to her 8,000/= per month salary. In short you need to add him or her 2954 on top of the KES 8000 per month for the year 2015/2016.

Types of Leave >>>

Annual Leave

  • Every employee is entitled to at least 21 working days of leave after completing 12 consecutive working months
  • If an employee is terminated after working at least 2 consecutive months , he/she must be given at least 1 ¾ days of paid leave for each completed month of work except if he/she is summarily dismissed.
  • Public holidays and sick leave days are not counted as leave days
  • Some industries e.g hotel and security give workers a leave travelling allowance

Sick Leave

  • A worker who falls ill must inform the employee
  • The employer once informed must provide the employee with proper medical attention
  • After completing 2 consecutive months of work, a permanent worker is entitled to at least 7 days of fully paid sick leave. After that, a worker is entitled to 7 days of sick leave with half pay.
  • To obtain sick leave, a worker must produce a letter signed by a qualified medical personnel.
  • If a worker has an accident at work and the accident is not the worker’s fault , the employer must pay the worker the full salary for the period he/she is absent from work until the worker is certified  incapable of returning to work.

Maternity and Paternity Leave

  • A woman takes 3 months maternity leave with full pay.
  • The female employee must give written notice , no less than 7 days in advance at which date she intends to leave and return to work.
  • A woman who has taken maternity leave cannot in the same year claim annual leave unless the employer agrees in writing.
  • Male employees are entitled to 2 weeks paternity leave with full pay

For more information on your labour rights write to or SMS 0700777333

Wage Deductions >>>

If the worker is absent from work without leave, the employer can deduct wages equal to the amount of time when the worker did not work.

An employer may deduct any contributions by a worker to his or her retirement or provident fund.

If a worker loses or damages goods or money at the work place, the employer may deduct the value of the lost goods or money from the worker’s wages

Salary advances or loans can be deducted from wages.

NOTE: An employee may not make deductions form wages as a form of punishment. Moreover, the total amount of deductions shall not exceed 2/3rds of the worker’s total wages.

  • Every employer is required by law to deduct a certain amount to pay the NSSF, NHIF and PAYE.


  • Workers save a portion of their present earnings and contribute it to a retirement or pension fund.
  • Any employer with more than 5 employees must make payments to NSSF from his employees wages.
  • To find out how much you should be contributing towards NSSF click on this link :
  • Casual workers do not benefit from this scheme, so they do not have to pay into it.
  • A worker is entitled to his /her NSSF payments after he/she reaches 65 years old and has retired from regular employment.
  • However a worker can access his/her NSSF contributions before the retirement age by supplying a letter of appointment , termination latter and a declaration that he/she is not able to continue making contributions.
  • A worker who is forced to retire because he /she is suffering any physical or mental incapacity can also benefit from this fund.
  • An employer who fails to make these payments is guilty of a criminal offence and should be reported at the nearest NSSF office.
  • An employee has the right to know if the employer is making NSSF payments and can write to NSSF to confirm.



  • All workers make a contribution to this fund to offset medical bills when admitted in hospital.
  • Click here to find out how much you should be contributing to NHIF.

Working Hours

  • 8 hours per day except for certain types of workers such as watchmen, herdsmen and caretakers.

Overtime payment

  • This is any period worked in excess of the regular working hours
  • An employer must give 24 hours’ notice for overtime requests
  • A worker cannot be forced to work overtime and should be compensated for any overtime work
  • Overtime= 1 ½ times the worker’s normal hourly rate for any time worked over the normal working hours
  • If overtime is on the worker’s normal rest day or public holiday, overtime pay is twice the normal hourly rate
  • If the worker is not employed by the hour, the basic hourly rate = 1/225 of the employers monthly wage.
  • A worker cannot be asked to work more than 116 hours in any consecutive 2 week period. For night workers it should not exceed 144 hours for 2 consecutive weeks.
  • An employer can offer time off in place of overtime pay if the worker agrees in writing.

For more information on your labour rights write to or SMS 0700777333

Kituo cha Sheria

We Care for Justice


All Comments

  • muneeni mukuru

    January 23, 2017 Reply

    I’m working with a private company and would like to leave the job for my(55) years old.what is can I do?to get my pay.

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