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Belize - Working time - 2011


LAST UPDATE

23 September 2011

SOURCES


Name of Act

Labour Act (Chapter 297), dated 31 December 1959, as amended up to Act No.3 of 2011.
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Name of Act

Wages Council Act, dated 28 February 1959, Chapter 302. As amended to 31 December 2000.

Name of Act

Holidays Act, as revised to 31 December 2000

LEGAL DEFINITIONS


Employee/worker

A worker is any person who has entered into or works under a contract with an employer under a contract of employment.
Labour Act §2(d)

Employer

Any person, firm, corporation, company, or body of persons who or which has entered into an agreement or contract to employ any worker.
Labour Act §2

Domestic worker

Domestic servant includes any house, garage or garden servant employed in or in connection with domestic services of any private dwelling-house but does not include any person employed in the service of establishments open to the public.
Labour Act §2

NORMAL HOURS LIMITS


Daily hours limit


General limit

No worker shall be obliged to work for more than nine hours of actual work in any day or forty-five hours of actual work in any week.
Labour Act §116(1)
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: 9 consecutive hours
  • 2007: 9 hours

Weekly hours limit


General limit

No worker shall be obliged to work on more than six days in any week or for more than forty-five hours of actual work in any week.
Labour Act §116(1)
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: 45 hours
  • 2007: 45 hours
  • 1995: 45 hours.

OVERTIME WORK


Criteria for overtime


General

Overtime work is: hours worked in excess of nine hours in a day or 45 hours in a week. Also working on a public holiday or Sunday is considered overtime and an employee must be duely compensated.
Labour Act §118

Limits on overtime hours


General limits

No general statutory limit.
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 1995: No legal provision.

Compensation for overtime work


Overtime rate(s)

If any worker works for and at the request of his employer on a public holiday or a Sunday or other agreed rest day or for more than nine hours in any day or forty-five hours in any week, he shall be paid wages for such extra work at the following rates-
(a) on Christmas Day, Good Friday, and Easter Monday - at a rate of not less than double his ordinary rate of pay;
(b) on public holidays other than those set out in paragraph (a) hereof - at a rate of not less than one and one-half times his ordinary rate of pay;
(c) on Sundays or other agreed rest days - at a rate of not less than one and one-half times his ordinary rate of pay; and
(d) for hours worked in excess of nine hours in any day or fortyfive hours in any week - at a rate of not less than one and one half times his ordinary rate of pay.
Labour Act §118(1)(a)-(d)
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: 50% increase on weekdays, rest days, and public holidays 200% increase on Christmas day, Good Friday, or Easter Monday.
  • 2007: 50% increase (weekdays, rest days, public holidays) 200% (Christmas day, Good Friday, Easter Monday) .
  • 1995: 50% premium during working days, work on Sundays and on public holidays. 200% on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Easter Monday.

Exceptions

The overtime rates are not applicable to certain categories including: managerial or supervisory workers, shop assistants and piece or task workers who are not subject to continuous supervision.
Labour Act §119(1)

Special categories


Shift work

Where workers are employed in shifts, it is permissible to employ them without payment of overtime in excess of the daily or weekly number of hours if the average number of hours over a period of three weeks or less does not exceed the daily or weekly number of hours specified in the act.
Labour Act §123

Agricultural workers

The overtime rates do not apply to workers hired to watch over agricultural properties of less than 100 acres who reside on the property.
Labour Act §119(1)(c)

SCHEDULES

Relevant provisions on schedules have not been identified.

REST PERIODS


Rest breaks


General provisions

Wherever the daily hours of work exceed six hours, the employer shall grant workers employed by him a break of not less than one hour in the middle of the working day, and the said break shall not be included in the computation of the hours of actual work.
Labour Act §121
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: One hour after six hours of consecutive work.
  • 2007: One hour after six hours of consecutive work.
  • 1995: 1 hours for more than 6 hours of work.

Special categories


» Shift work

Under conditions of continuous shift working in which the Commissioner is satisfied it would not be practicable to grant workers a break of one hour�s duration, he may approve some other basis of working which seems to him fair and reasonable m the special circumstances.
Labour Act §121

Daily rest periods


Duration

The night rest period shall in no case be less than nine consecutive hours. For persons working during the night, the rest period during the day shall likewise in no case be less than nine consecutive hours.
Labour Act §122
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 2009: Nine hours.
  • 2007: Nine hours.
  • 1995: 9 consecutive hours.

Special categories


» Night work

Rest time is also 9 hours, to be granted during daytime.
Labour Act §122

Weekly rest periods


Duration

No expresly provisions related to the duration of the weekly rest. However the legislation states that no worker shall be obliged to work on more than six days in any week. Therefore it seems that all workers shall enjoy one day of rest in each week of work.
Labour Act §116(1)

Day specified


» General

Sunday will be generally the weekly rest day unless other day agreed between the employer or an organisation of employers, on the one hand, and a worker or organisation of workers, on the other hand.
Labour Act §115

» Exceptions

Sunday may be substituted for another day, which will be agreed upon between the empolyer and employee or between the organization of employers and the organization of employees.
Labour Act §115

Work on weekly rest day


» Compensation (for working on a rest day)

If a worker works for and at the request of his or her employer on a rest day he or she will be paid extra at a rate of one and 150% his or her ordinary pay rate, or more.
Labour Act §118(c)

ANNUAL LEAVE AND PUBLIC HOLIDAYS


ANNUAL LEAVE


Qualifying period

At the end of the first year of employment (and at the end of every following year), workers are entitled to an annual holiday of at least two (2) working weeks.
Labour Act §127(1)

Duration


» General

The duration of the annual leave shall be two working weeks.
Labour Act §127(1)
Historical data (year indicates year of data collection)
  • 1995: 6 working days (14 in practice)

Payment


» Amount

Every worker who takes an annual holiday shall be paid by his employer in respect of such annual holiday his average pay in respect of the period of his employment with such employer during the period of twelve months to which such annual holiday relates.

No deduction shall be made in respect of agreed rest days from the wages of a worker which are to be paid to him as holiday pay.
Labour Act §128(1)(4)

» Date of payment

Where the worker takes his annual holiday in one period, the average pay shall be paid to him not later than the day immediately preceding the commencement of such annual holiday.

Where the worker takes his annual holiday in two separate periods of equal duration, one-half of the average pay shall be paid to him not later than the day immediately preceding the commencement of each of the two periods.
Labour Act §128(2)(3)

Schedule and splitting

The annual holiday shall be given and taken in one period, or if the employer and worker so agree, in two separate periods and not otherwise.
If the employer and worker so agree, the annual holiday or either of such separate periods may be taken wholly or partly in advance before the worker has become entitled to such holiday.
The annual holiday shall be given by the employer and shall be taken by the worker before the expiration of six months after the date upon which the right to such holiday accrued; provided that the giving and taking of the whole or any separate period if such holiday may, with the consent in writing of the Commissioner, be further postponed for a period to be specified by him in any case where he is of opinion that circumstances render such postponement necessary or desirable.
The employer shall determine the date on which the annual holiday shall commence and shall give to the worker not less than seven days’ notice of such date.
Labour Act §127(3)(4)(5)(6)

Special categories


» Domestic work

Domestic workers are expressly included in the scope of application of the annual holidays legislation.
Labour Act Labour (Annual Holiday) (Specified date) Order

PUBLIC HOLIDAYS


Number and dates

Thirteen days.
First day of January (New Year’s Day), Ninth day of March (National Heroes and Benefactors Day), 22nd April Good Friday, 23 April Holy Saturday, 25 April Easter Monday, the first day of May Labour Day, the twenty-fourth day of May (Sovereign’s Day), the tenth day of September(St. George’s Caye Day), the twenty-first day of September (Independence Day), the twelfth day of October (Pan Americal Day), the nineteenth day of November (Garifuna Settlement Day), 25th December Christmas Day, the twenty-sixth day of December (Boxing Day)
Holidays Act §3(1) and First Schedule

Payment

No deduction shall be made from the wages of a worker paid by the month or the week for time not worked on a public holiday.

Workers paid by the hour, by the day or on a piece work or task work basis shall be paid at single time rate the wages of a normal working day for a public holiday which falls on a scheduled workday, that is to say a day on which he would have worked were it not a public holiday, if he is at work on the scheduled workday immediately preceding and that immediately following the public holiday or, where he has been laid off within six days before the public holiday, he is re-employed within six days after the holiday, provided that this shall not apply to workers who are remunerated by the piece or by the task and are not subject to continuous supervision.
Labour Act §117(1)(2)

Work on Public Holidays


» Criteria

No worker is obigated to work on a public holiday.
Labour Act §115

» Compensation

All work done on public holidays other than Christmas Day, Good Friday and Easter Monday, which fall on a scheduled work day, that is to say, a day in which the worker would have worked but for the public holiday, shall be paid with his ordinary wage plus the 150% of such amount.

All work done on Christmas Day, Good Friday and Easter Monday, which fall on a scheduled work day, that is to say, a day in which the worker would have worked but for the public holiday, shall be paid with his ordinary wage plus the 200% of such amount.
Labour Act §117
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PART-TIME WORK

Relevant provisions on part-time work have not been identified.

NIGHT WORK


Special categories


Young workers

Night work is generally prohibited for persons under the age of 18.

However, the Minister, after consultation with any workers’ or employers’ organisations concerned, may by Order authorise the employment during the night of male persons who have attained the age of sixteen years but are under the age of eighteen years, in industrial undertakings or branch thereof, for purposes of apprenticeship or vocational training, or when in case of serious emergency the public interest demands it.

In addition, the Minister may permit women and male persons between the ages of sixteen and eighteen years, to be employed in any industrial undertaking or in any branch thereof, during that part of the night which falls between 7.00 p.m. and 11.00 p.m. on condition that the night-rest period of such women and male persons is of not less than twelve consecutive hours duration.
Labour Act §161(1)(2)(3)(4)(5)

Women

In general, women shall not be employed at night. However with respect to the employment of women during the night, shall not apply-
(a) to women holding responsible positions of a managerial or
technical character;
(b) to women employed in health and welfare services who are
not ordinarily engaged in manual work;
(c) to an industrial undertaking in which only members of the same
family are employed;
(d) in any case of force majeure when in an industrial undertaking
there occurs an interruption of work which it was impossible
Labour Act §161(1), 162(1)a-e

SHIFT WORK


Limits


Overtime work

Where workers are employed in shifts, it is permissible to employ them without payment of overtime in excess of the daily or weekly number of hours if the average number of hours over a period of three weeks or less does not exceed the daily or weekly number of hours specified in this Act.
Labour Act §123

ON-CALL WORK

Relevant provisions on on-call work have not been identified.

FLEXITIME

Relevant provisions on flexitime have not been identified.

CASUAL WORK


General provisions

In the case of casual workers employed for short periods, wages shall be paid immediately on completion of the work.
Labour Act §101(2)

SHORT-TIME WORK/WORK-SHARING

Relevant provisions on short-time work have not been identified.

RIGHT TO CHANGE WORKING HOURS

Relevant provisions on right to change working hours have not been identified.

INFORMATION & CONSULTATION

Relevant provisions on information and consultation have not been identified.

Results generated on: 19th April 2014 at 08:54:27.
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