Posts Tagged ‘tricks maid agencies use’

PostHeaderIcon Singapore maid agency scams?

I’ve 2 similar cases here which I think can help readers protect themselves from unscrupulous agencies. Based on my interactions with agencies, most of us are good people - really. We work for what we deserve just like you. Unfortunately there are the bad ones out there. You just have to know their tricks. Read this - Singapore maid agency scams and the 2 case studies below.

Case #1:


First of all thanks for your initiative…and without any reason your blog wont come in google’s search list number 1….thanks again…

I am on EP and working here staying in S’pore for 3 years with a 3 yr old kid…recently we had taken a maid from XXX agency…2nd day we asked the maid to give a call to her husband so that her family will be relived….however after the call she told that her husband wants her to go back to her country….and the maid wanted to go back…we paid 3200 for her loan..and 1000$ for agency fee + other stuff…so we went to agency and could not find any other maid…the maid did not want to go back to agency as every time she changes employer, agency adds one more month of loan to her…however we could not find any replacement and agreed to keep the maid for 8 months to complete her loan…please note that the contract was for 2 years….

yesterday the maid ran away from home…my father and daughter were sleeping while she left with out taking her belongings…we called up agency and agency told she is with an organization called HOME…and she wants to go back to her country….after a lot of talk…we decided to file a police complaint….we never contacted HOME as to us the agency is the representative….

I realized that i must buy her return ticket…so i bought a ticket and tomorrow i am going to cancel her work permit…the agency wants to give us replacement but it will take almost 2 months to get a new maid…moreover for the new replacement maid we also need to pay 600$ more (insurance+300 POE phillipines + documentaion) etc…the agencies behavior is not good…though after lot of clash they agreed to return me back the loan amount 3K almost…but everytime they are saying that as per the rule they should not return me the maid’s loan but they are doing me a favor…i am not at all satisfied with their behavior…more over they are saying that to get the loan amount back i need to sign a form which says i am not going to complain about the agency….then i came to know that i can complain against the agency…

you see…the maid came on 6th december and left on 22nd…and within this time i lost 1000k…and the agency is not going to take responsibility of that…at the max they are ready to offer replacement which is going to take more than 2 months…

can you suggest me whether i can complain against the agency or not…its them who had brought the maid here…leave apart the maid…what to do with her…she does not even have money to go back home also….but the agency should be reasonable…

thank you gain…

It’s already more than 4 months. BUT the maid agency hasn’t returned a single cent of the $4,244.60 I paid to it after the FDW was transfered to a new employer! After only 17 days of “work”, FDW arrogantly “resigned”. I wondered why until I noticed that the maid agency happily transfered FDW elsewhere inorder to collect a new set of FEES from another employer. Meanwhile, the maid agency pretended that it is getting a “replacement” for me. After nearly 2 months of many excuses, no FDW came. I would be grateful if someone can help me. I came across many old folks who lost their hard earned monies to agencies but do not know how to voice their grievances. The helpless folks were not aware that the agencies have certain unscrupulous schemes to make money from just one FDW.

Case #2:


My maid agent promised me he will arrange for maid in 3-6 days when i explained him my urgency for maid. But after i paid an advance amount of 1000 he keep on asking me to transfer 500 more dollars to buy flight ticket to maid o bring her here.

But even after i transferred the money there wasnt any response from him, and i am keep on chasing him for status.

when i ask him for purchased ticket he used to send some ticket but it is not a valid purchased ticket.

So frustrated with his attitude i cancelled work permit for maid and asked agent to return my whole money.

He said ok but he is not returning the money.

Can you please advise how to get back my money. I already lodged a complaint with CASE i dont know the timelines for the feedback given to them.

Please advise.


=========== My thoughts ========

1. I’m sorry to read about the troubles you have with the 2 agencies. My belief is that this trouble can be prevented if you approach a reputable agency. With the MOM EA directory - you can check how long the agency has been in business, what percentage of their maids stay with their employers for at least 1 year, etc. I have an article on this - How to Find a Good Maid in Singapore Find one with a lot of positive feedback from employers.

2. It is very important to ask the agencies what they will do what things go wrong. Make sure they have it in the contract so that you can “take legal action” against them based on the contract.

3. Generally, it is to the disadvantage of the employer when the helper wants to go home. Here’s the rationale - it is because of you that the helper is working here in Singapore. So, if she wants to go home, it is your responsibility to pay for the air ticket. If the girl goes to HOME, you’re going to have a difficult case and it is best to pay for her air ticket and let her go home and let the matter rest. You don’t want to “fight” with anyone. Life’s too stressful for that.

4. You can always complain about the agencies to CASE or MOM or AEAs. The important thing is that you must have the black and white to prove your case - particularly the service contract you signed with the agency. That will state your rights as to refunds, replacements, guarantees, fees paid, etc. The MOM has a standard contract which all agencies are to used. The only difference in the contract is the different pricing, terms and conditions, and market practices of the agency. But, all must be within the guidelines of MOM.

5. So, what can you do when the maid refuses to work? And, the replacement maid is not coming any time soon? If the maid refuses to work, you can always ask the agency to do some counselling. It is always a good idea to try to keep the current worker if possible. Bear in mind that now we are having the new generation of “Internet savvy” Gen-Y girls. They are not as good an employee as the earlier batches of girls. That’s my opinion. And, if the replacement maid is not coming, you’ll have to check your agency contract on the timeline and what are your options.

6. Despite the contract and terms, it is always up to the agency to do the right thing. The better ones will be willing to meet you half way and both of you bear some of the costs. Sometimes, it is the helper that causes all the problems for everybody. They are just human and they change their minds quickly and can be very fickle-minded. If you know women, then you have an idea ;-)

Thank you for reading.

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