Table of Contents

Liberia

Table of Contents

Currency

Liberian dollar (LRD)

Payroll Frequency

Monthly

Employer Taxes

4.75%

About Liberia

Liberia is a country located in West Africa, neighboring Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Ivory Coast. Established as a country for freed African Americans. Liberia gained independence in 1847 making it the first African country to become independent. The political climate of Liberia has been unstable as a result of constant civil war starting in 1989. The civil war ended in 2003 after intervention by the United Nations which deployed its soldiers to control the country’s security. The potential for violence and civil war remains high and many foreign governments often still have to put up travel advisories against travel there. Liberia has a unique culture combining the culture of the freed slaves from different countries along with regional traditions with each tribe having district rituals and practices. The main language in Liberia is English.

Employment Relationship

• Permanent Employment

Liberia's Decent Work Act defines full-time employees as those who work 5 days a week for 40 hours or 6 days a week for 48 hours. Employment contracts of an indefinite duration are considered permanent contracts.  Employers are not to hire employees on a fixed-term contract for tasks of a permanent nature. Both the employer and employee may end employment contracts after giving notice. Employers can terminate permanent employees' contracts for just cause based on ability and conduct of the employee, or operational requirements of the business.

• Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts

In Liberia, a contract can be oral or written and can last for a certain period of time, depending on what is arranged between the employer and the employee. Fixed-term contracts can be made for a specific duration or specific task. Employers must specify the duration of employment in the contract. A fixed-term contract can only be terminated at the end of its duration or in case of gross misconduct.  

• Temporary Employment Contratcs

Casual employees are differentiated from full-time, part-time, or fixed-term employees, as they are hired on an hourly basis. If a casual employee is regularly hired by the same employer for several employment periods over 6 months, they become entitled to be hired as a full-time or part-time employee, depending on the number of hours the employee is usually engaged to work. All casual employees have the right to receive minimum wage.

Probationary Period

The probationary period can last a maximum of 3 months. An employee can be dismissed without notice during probation.

Working Hours

Liberia's labor law states that the standard workweek is limited to 48 hours and that workdays are limited to 8 hours per day. Under exceptional circumstances, employees may be required to work overtime for up to 5 hours a week, averaged out over a period of 4 months. An employee who has not yet attained the age of 16 years cannot be employed for more than seven hours in a day or for more than 42 hours in any working week.  

Holidays / PTO

• Statutory Holidays

New Year’s Day (January 1st), Armed Forces Day (February 11), Decoration Day (Second Wednesday of March), J.J. Roberts’ Birthday (March 15), Fast and Prayer Day (Second Friday of April), National Unification Day (May 14), Independence Day (July 26), Flag Day (August 24), Thanksgiving (First Thursday of November), William Tubman’s Birthday (November 29), Christmas Day (December 25)

• Paid Annual Leave

Every employee is entitled to paid annual leave as follows: During the first year of employment with an employer – 1 week During the second year of employment with an employer – 2 weeks After 36 months of employment with an employer – 3 weeks After 60 months of employment with an employer – 4 weeks Weekly rest days and public holidays are not considered a part of annual leave. Employees under the age of 18 years are granted an extra week of annual leave.  The annual leave of employees in Liberia may accumulate from year to year, yet the total accumulation may not exceed 3 years’ accumulation of unused leave. 

• Sick Leave

In Liberia, employees are entitled to ten days of annual sick leave for every year of continuous service to their employer. An employee’s sick leave entitlement accumulates in the same way as their general annual leave; however, they cannot receive compensation at the end of their employment contract for sick days accumulated but not taken. Sick leave provisions dictate that employees are required to give as much notice as is reasonably possible of their intention to exercise their entitlement to paid sick leave. They must also provide a medical note. Employees are eligible for a maximum of 3 unverified sick days within a 12-month period if they are unable to obtain medical documentation corroborating their illness or injury. Sick leave is paid in the same way as a normal workday.  

• Maternity Leave

Employed women in Liberia are entitled to a minimum of 14 weeks of paid maternity leave, provided that they take a minimum of 6 weeks immediately following the birth of their child. Employees on maternity leave are compensated at the same rate at which they would have been paid during their normal working hours. Pregnant women cannot be employed to perform work that is hazardous to their health or their child's health. Employment continues unbroken during any period of maternity leave.  Employees are also entitled to an extended unpaid maternity leave of up to one month if any complications arise from the pregnancy or delivery, as certified by a medical practitioner.

• Paternity Leave

Fathers are given 5 unpaid days leave upon the birth of a child, which must be taken within 1 month from childbirth.  As polygamy is legal in Liberia, an employee will have to indicate to which of his wives' children the paternity leave will apply before claiming entitlement to his paternity leave. He cannot leave for the birth of children born to more than 1 wife.

Termination of Employment

• Notice Period

Under Liberia's labor law, any employee who has completed their probationary period is entitled to a certain period of notice from their employer before their employment contract is terminated. The provisions for the length of notice vary depending on the amount of time an employee has continuously worked for the employer as follows: Less than 3 months of employment – 1 week 3 to 6 months of employment – 2 weeks 6 to 12 months of employment  – 3 weeks More than 12 months of employment – 4 weeks Notice period can be waived by paying regular wages equivalent to the duration of notice period.

• Severance Benefits

In Liberia, employees are entitled to severance pay if they are dismissed due to economic reasons. Severance pay is paid as 4 weeks' salary for each completed year of service. The law does not provide for severance pay in case of termination due to other reasons.