HR Ministry MCO Guidelines

Does employer need to pay salaries to employees during the 14 days Movement Control Order (MCO) extension which started from 1st April 2020 till 14th April 2020?

Yes, all salaries and fixed allowances are required to be paid to employees except for allowances that are related to attendance/travelling (which are NOT being performed during that period).

Can employers advise their staff to apply for Annual Leave or directly deduct employee’s Annual Leave during the extended Movement Control Order (MCO)?

No, the employers can’t force their employees to take Annual Leave during the extended Movement Control Order (MCO) as Annual Leave is granted or to be deducted upon the will/request by employees.

What are the actions that employers could take during the extended Movement Control Order (MCO)?

During MCO, employers are advised to follow the below actions:-

  1. Employers must pay their employees full salaries and all eligible allowances during the extended Movement Control Order;
  2. Subjected to agreement from both parties, employers could offer their employees as per the below:-
    • Full paid leave
    • Half paid leave; or
    • Unpaid leave
  3. If retrenchment actions are required, employers can refer to the Retrenchment Guidelines. Retrenchment Guidelines and Employment Retrenchment Notification form (Form PK) is available in JTKSM website. (www.jtksm.mohr.gov.my)

What actions can be taken by employees if the employers does not follow the above?

Employees may go to the nearest Labour Office to lodge a report.

Can employers perform Retrenchment process if their businesses are affected by the COVID-19?

Retrenchment is a way to cut down excess overhead labour in the company. In general, the Retrenchment process is the prerogative of the employer. However to ensure that the Retrenchment process is fair to all parties, these are the 3 key things employers need to adhere to, namely:-

  • The reason for the employer’s business affected by COVID-19 should be genuine;
  • Employers are required to avoid retrenchment of work first such as reducing    work hours, limiting or restricting the hiring of new employees, limiting overtime, limiting work on weekends or public holidays, reducing employees’ salaries, implementing temporary layoffs (lay-off); and
  • If Retrenchment process is unavoidable, foreign workers needs to be terminated first. The principle of LIFO (Last in First Out) must be adhered if it involves local employees during the Retrenchment process. However this principle can be ignored if the employer has a strong justification for not doing so. The employer must report to the nearest Labour Office thirty (30) days before the date of Retrenchment. The employer can get Retrenchment Guidelines and Employment Retrenchment Notification form (Borang PK) in JTKSM website. (www.jtksm.mohr.gov.my)

What actions can be taken if there’s a COVID-19 suspect or positive employee?

Employer should direct all employees who work closely with the employee to stay at home for a period 14 days to ensure that it does not spread to others. Prior to that, the said employee are required to identify all individuals who are close contact (three to six feet) with them on the past 2 weeks before being suspected. By doing so, the employers will have a complete list of the individuals who are at risk. Employers must maintain confidentiality without leaking personal information of the said employee. In addition, the employer must perform disinfection process at the working spaces affected. If the workplace is inside a building or shared office area, the employer involved should inform the management of building so that they can take precautionary measurements accordingly.

Can foreign workers who holds a Temporary Employment Visit Pass (PLKS), Employment Pass (Expatriate Pas), and MM2 return to their origin country?

Yes and it will be subjected to the conditions set by the Immigration Department of Malaysia. Please contact KDN Operations Room at 03- 8886 8110 / 03-88868126 for more information.

If there’s an employee confirmed with positive COVID-19, can employers grant unpaid leave to all employees?

Employers can provide leave to other employees in order to ensure the safety and health measure of other employees. The leave granted to employee shall be a paid leave and not unpaid leave. Employers are not allow to force employees to go on unpaid leave.

What can be done by a daily wage employee during the period of Movement Control Order (MCO), if no salaries is being paid?

Please refer to the FAQ’s under Employment Retention Program (ERP) issued by The Social Security Organization (SOCSO) at 1300-22-8000 or visit www.perkeso.gov.my

What actions can be taken if employers’ falls under the Non Essential Services category but still operate without an exception letter from the Director of Health (MOH)?

Any personnel can lodge a report to PDRM/RELA/JTK/Occupational Safety and Health Department.

What actions can employee take if there’s employer who does not comply with the Movement Control Order (MCO)?

Employees can lodge a report to the Police, RELA or Ministry of Human Resources (MOHR).

For any report and inquiry:-


  1. 03 8889 2359
  2. 03 8890 3404
  3. 03 8886 2409
  4. 03 8886 2352
  5. 03 8888 9111

Via email:-

  1. jtksm@mohr.gov.my
  2. jtknsabah@mohr.gov.my
  3. jtknsarawak@mohr.gov.my

6 thoughts on “HR Ministry MCO Guidelines

    • Author gravatar

      Dear Sir/Madam,
      Good day!

      We would like to seek your advice on newly appointed employee whose joining date falls during the MCO period if employer is obligated to treat them as one of the employees and pay them according to the duly signed Offer Letter, just like every other employee in the company.

      Technically, this newly appointed employee is unable to report for work due the MCO period, e.g. Date Join on 1 April 2020.
      Is he officially considered an employee with us and get paid according to the signed Offer Letter?
      Officially, this employee has ceased employment with his previous employer and would NOT be paid during the MCO period by his previous employer.

      Appreciate your advice, please.
      Thank you and stay safe!

      • Author gravatar

        Hi Eve,

        If the company wish to postpone the commence date, it must be agreed by both parties. Please get him to sign a new offer letter. Otherwise, he is considered an employee and must be paid accordingly.

        Subjected to agreement from both parties, employer could offer the employee as per the below:-
        Full paid leave
        Half paid leave; or
        Unpaid leave

        Hope it helps.

    • Author gravatar

      Dear Lady or Sir,

      Please allow me to seek your kind advice on annual leaves for our employees.
      During MCO, we understand that the employer can not force employees to use up their annual leaves during lockdown.
      However, the phase after May.12, almost all companies resume to work as per proper SOP.
      In this new phase, if employees want to take leaves, can the employer deduct their annual leave? Or, regardless of reason, the employer can not deduct their annual leave during MCO?

      What happened here is that some people take this opportunity to apply leaves because employees believe that there is no deduction of annual leave credits during MCO (they believe that employees can take leaves as many as they want).

      In this case, it will affect our productivity in the production. Many employees do not come to work.

      It would be utmost appreciated if you could clarify on this matter.


    • Author gravatar

      Dear Sirs,

      Please allow me to seek your kind advice on salary and annual leaves deduction during mco period (18/3/20 – 31/8/20) for our employees concerned.

      During MCO period, we understand from the Government, that the employer are not allow to deduct employees salary and their annual leave.

      However, the phase after 12/5/20, almost all companies resume to work as per proper SOP. But our office only resume work on 4/5/20 on alternate days.

      Q1 – In this matter, can the employer deduct 50% of the employee salary?

      Q2 – Currently the employer informed all employees as below:-
      “Annual leave are only allowed to take 60% of the annual leave entitlement for the whole year. The 40% entitlement are not given as already compensated during MCO”?

      Is there any article to prove that the employer are not allowed to deduct the employees salary and annual leave during the whole MCO period.

      Kindly advice. TQ

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