Enrolling employees

Enrolling Employees

As an employer, it is your legal obligation under the MPF System to enrol your new employees into the MPF scheme you are participating.

60-day Deadline

Except for exempt persons, you should enrol both full-time and part-time employees who are at least 18 but under 65 years of age in an MPF scheme within the first 60 days of employment.  The 60-day employment rule does not apply to casual employees in the construction and catering industries. Please see here for more information.

Note: If the 60th day of employment is a Saturday, a public holiday, a gale warning day or a black rainstorm warning day, the enrolment deadline is extended to end on the next following day which is not a Saturday, a public holiday, a gale warning day or a black rainstorm warning day.

Exempt persons include:

  1. employees and self-employed persons who have attained 64 years of age on the date the relevant provision in the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Ordinance is implemented, i.e. 1 Dec 2000;
  2. domestic employees;
  3. self-employed hawkers;
  4. people covered by statutory pension or provident fund schemes, such as civil servants and subsidized or grant school teachers;
  5. members of occupational retirement schemes which are granted exemption certificates;
  6. people from overseas who enter Hong Kong for employment or self-employment for not more than 13 months;
  7. people from overseas who enter Hong Kong for employment or self-employment and who are covered by overseas retirement schemes; and
  8. employees of the European Union Office of the European Commission in Hong Kong.

Take the following case as an example, Marcus is employed by your company as Marketing Executive and his first day of employment is 19 June. The deadline for you to enrol him into your MPF scheme is therefore 17 August, the 60th calendar day counting from his first day of employment.

You should note that the 60-day employment rule refers to the duration of the employment relationship that your company and Marcus have entered into, not the number of days that Marcus has worked since his first day of employment.

If the employment relationship ends, for whatever reason, prior to the 60th day of employment, no MPF arrangement is required for Marcus.

It is not uncommon for employers to set a probation period, say three months, for any particular position in their company. You should note that the probation period has no bearing on the 60-day employment rule. Using Marcus’ case as an example, if Marcus is subject to a three-month probation period and has not yet completed his three-month probation period, you are still required to enrol him into an MPF scheme by 17 August.

As mentioned above, enrolling your employees into an MPF scheme is a legal obligation, and failing to do so is a criminal offence. The employer is liable to a maximum penalty of a $350,000 fine and imprisonment for three years.

If you are an employer in the construction or catering industry, please click here for more information on your enrolment obligations.

Enrolment Procedures

To enrol an employee, simply provide an enrolment form for the MPF scheme you are participating in to the employee. They will need to indicate their investment portfolio, i.e. the types of funds they wish to invest their MPF contributions into, provide their personal particulars, a self-certification which includes tax residency (i.e. declaring whether he/she is a tax resident outside Hong Kong) and sign the form. You should then return the completed form to your trustee to arrange for the setting up of an MPF account for your employee.

You are advised to allow sufficient time for your employees to study the funds available in the MPF scheme you have chosen in order to decide on their own investment portfolio. The enrolment form should therefore be provided to your employees as soon as possible.

In the event that an employee refuses to cooperate and does not return the completed enrolment form to you, you should still send the incomplete enrolment form to your trustee before the 60-day deadline to fulfil your obligation as an employer.

If an employee does not provide investment choices on the enrolment form, contributions made for that employee will be invested according to Default Investment Strategy ("DIS") of the scheme.

The Inland Revenue (Amendment) (No.2) Ordinance 2019 was gazetted on 1 March 2019 and the requirements relating to Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (AEOI) apply to MPF schemes starting from 1 January 2020.  For all new MPF accounts open on or after 1 January 2020, the account holder (including employee and self-employed person) is required to complete a self-certification which includes tax residency (i.e. declaring whether he/she is a tax resident outside Hong Kong). The account opening procedures could not be completed by the trustee if the account holder fails to provide the self-certification.

Notice of participation

After the scheme trustee has confirmed an employee’s membership of an MPF scheme, it will issue a notice of participation to the employee.  

The notice of participation will state the name of the scheme in which the employee is enrolled, the name and address of the trustee, the employee’s name and the issue date of the notice.  With effect from 1 August 2015, the notice of participation replaces the membership certificate.