Wed, Oct 15, 2003 - Page 2 News List

New job-seekers warned of scam

By Cody Yiu  /  STAFF REPORTER

Job-seekers should be wary of deceitful job advertisements and employment scams, particularly by companies purportedly seeking models, Taipei's Bureau of Labor Affairs said yesterday.

"In 2003, we have received 11 complaints so far about model agencies providing job-seekers with misleading hiring information in the Taipei area," said Lai Po-ching (賴柏菁), an officer in the bureau's Section II, which deals with employment fraud.

The bureau gave the example of a man, whom it identified only as Mr. Wang, who posted his resume in an Internet job bank. A "model agency" called him and invited him for an interview, during which it asked him to film a demo tape.

Later the agency claimed to have found a customer who was interested Wang's demo, but he had to pay NT$65,000 in training and filming fees. Wang paid the fees and never heard from the agency again.

"When an employer requests a job-seeker to pay a fee without delivering the service or product, this breaches the Consumer Protection Law (公平交易法)" said Yiu Kai-hsiung (游開雄), a volunteer lawyer at the Consumers' Foundation.

Lai said another common problem was advertisements that are deliberately misleading. Most commonly, the advertised salary will be far more than the actual salary on offer.

Agencies who design any advertisement that they know, or could know, is misleading could also be liable to prosecution under the Fair Trade Act (公平交易法).

"The employer can be fined up to NT$50,000 to NT$25 million, depending upon the severity of each case," Yiu said.

The bureau has a hotline to answer job-seekers' questions and complaints at (02) 2722-5707 and a Web site that contains important precautions for job seekers: www.bola.taipei.gov.tw/DupeWeb

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