Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

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Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby lck » Sat Mar 09, 2013 7:44 pm

Recently I have a very bad experience with one of the maid agency (The name of the agency start with "A" and their sign board in purple colour ) at Hougang Green. I cannot list down the name or else the adminstrator will delete my post .


The maid that i chosen have yet to arrive and at our end, we have given them a total sum of $600++ for insurance / bond / agency fee(replacement maid) / etc...

All the while they are given all lame excuse and keep us waiting for the maid to arrive. After 3 months of waiting, I have no choice to TERMINATE their serivce (Fyi, the replacement will still require to pay agency fee $200.00 and it does not come FOC).

When I approached the agency for the refund of $600 ++, i was told that the money will not be refund back to me !!! Despite making a few trips and calls, they are determine that $$ cannot be refund. I decided to speak direct to his boss but always told that BOSS not in SIngapore. Till today, I have not even see the BOSS !!!

I decided to go down Small Court Turb.(paid $10.00) and MOM. After explained my situation to MOM, they provided me with the following contact and inform me to seek assistance from them (paid $50.00 and fill up a form). They are very responsive and confirmed with us the types of FEEs that can be refund back from the agency.

Singapore Employment Agenices (In charge of ALL AGENCY)
Tel : 68362618 / Fax : 68362690 / aeas.org.sg
email : aeas.org@gmail.com
Address : 9 Jalan Kuloh #03-77 Singapore 160009


With all the verfication / confirmations from the MOM, I call the agency again to ask for my refund. Immediately they prepare their cheque and let me sign a settlement letter to resolve the case. since they have refund me the $$, I decided not to bring up the issues to small claims Turb.

Lesson learnt :

1. Some maid agenices are out there to earn agency fee / replacement fee...and not providing a service. To them, the more the maids replace, their $$ will keep generating and profit will always be there. So get a agency which can really provide good service.

2. As employers, many times we always thought that Agency Fees cannot be refund. Some of the employers might be new in getting maid and not sure of the system and our rights. The agency will tried to take our advantage either delay the payment or just told you EVERYTHING NOT REFUNDABLE. Call the abovementioned that I provided, they will assist you.

3. All agency are under MOM monitoring list. THere are a few agencies that keep receiving complains and that will results them getting dermerit points. Once the dermerit points hit the MAX, their licence will be affected or worst case, CLOSED SHOP. As such, the agenices will usually want to settle the issues and hope that you don't complain them direct to MOM. If you recieve a agencysettlement letter thru email, dont ever respond to them. They are able to take that as evidence and everything you write will be in black / white. Some agenices will just stated from XXX maid agency management and backend there is no name/appointment stated in the mail. So you dont really know you are talking or correspond to .

If need to settle the issues, go down direct to their agency and get their BOSS to speak to you. If you think you just want your $$ back, tell them to prepare the cheque asap and dont let them drag the case. Sometime they will provide you options " Why not I extend my service till Dec 13". Dont ever accept cos forever you are under their CONTROL and if you keep replace , u will be givinng them more $$.

To all, IF SERVICE NO GOOD = IMMEDIATE TERMINATE.

Don't because of small amount of fees , you keep going back the agency to change maid. U will find yourself paying more and more $$ .

lck
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby sleect » Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:14 pm

Let me also relate my experience with another agency in Hougang Green name starting with 'J'.
I had to let my maid (Indon) of 19 mths go home as her young son is ill. No complains- no day-off, don’t mix around outside, look after my 2 daughters (6 yrs & 18 mths) well, does the household chores diligently, both kids were close to her especially the young one whom she took care since a mth old. Hence, we went back to the same agency 'J' to get a replacement maid. We were told that the agency fee now is $12xx (instead of $3xx previously) and salary is $450+$70 (we prefer maid with experience and don’t take day-off). We selected the new maid in end Nov 12, waited till end Jan 13, new maid still have not arrive due to issues with application of new passport. Based on the agency’s recommendation, we selected another maid (ex-Jakarta, experience in taking care of kids, has a 3 yr old son) that already has a passport and fitted our criteria (looking after kids and household chores, with prior experience). All this while my previous maid still with us and agree to stay for a few more days to help train the new maid. The new maid arrived last week, boy...were we shocked at the new arrival. She doesn’t seems to be experience at all, was slow in completing the chores, when briefed on how to perform certain tasks, just give a ‘stoned’ look keep nodding and replied ‘yes’ or ‘ok’, got the same reaction when we corrected her mistakes . I seriously doubt if she can comprehend what we say or what my previous maid is telling her (even in their own language). Some of the things she did dumbfounded us including my previous maid-
1) Threw an unfinished packet of rice out the window
2) Using newspaper to wipe the table
3) Do not know how to make milk for my youngest daughter despite me and my previous maid demonstrating to her no less than half a dozen times (1st try- put powder before water, 2nd try use room temp water to make milk- when questioned, claims this is the way she do back home).
4) Do not know how to feed my youngest daughter- Keeps playing with her by dangling the bottle or spoon in front of her instead of putting in her mouth.
5) Telling lies- Among others, deny (1) & (2) above when questioned. Did not shower my daughter but claim she did and later flipped her answer to say she just wiped her down.
We had sleepless nights since her arrival. It seems that she is acting blur or plain lazy. On the fourth day, we decided to send her back to the agent. When questioned by the agent, she denied everything. Throughout the 4 days, she keep saying sorry but did not show any effort to correct her mistakes, instructions go in one ear and come out the other. On the same day, my previous maid also had to leave (she was apologetic that we had ended up in this predicament). The agency asked if we wanted to take the new maid back temporarily as we still have to pay for her 1 mth salary. Of course we said no, how can I leave my children under the care of someone like that. It seems that I’ve wasted $2000+ for nothing; on top of that, we still have to pay additional agency fee if we were to select another replacement. We have decided against that at the moment.
Is this to be expected for a maid with experience? Or down to bad luck. It seems that the maid’s bio-data may not reflect the true picture and no basic quality control at all. I would like to ask, am I able to get back any of the $2000+? what is our rights as employers here...? Sometimes its not about the money but the injustice under the circumstances. Advice from fellow-forummers welcomed.

sleect
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby camleelaa » Mon Mar 11, 2013 4:26 pm

Unfortunately I don't think employers have any right to recover $ back so long as you have been supplied with a maid of your choice. There is no QC on the maids supplied by agencies. I had similar issue with a lousy maid supplied by an agency, whose actual capabilities versus those stated on her bio do not match at all. For the record, her bio was so "impressive" (or maybe there are so few suitable maids nowadays) that at least 3 people wanted to hire her and I only managed to secure her by pre-paying a deposit. She arrived and was hopeless, not as weird as your maid, but certainly not typical of someone who had apparently spent 8 years working as a housemaid in Indon and looked after children of all ages. I could not hire her.

My options were to either pay $488 to get a new replacement maid from Indon, or around $200 for a transfer maid currently in Singapore. However, the agency only let me interview one transfer maid (claiming no supply), who proved unsuitable, hence I paid another $488, + 21 days of food and lodging at $12/day while waiting for the lousy maid to transfer out. I didn't switch agencies because I am overall satisfied with their service. I can't blame them for supplying me a lousy maid that I agreed to myself. Anyway, to be honest, neither yourself nor the agent will know how good a maid is until she is put to a practical test. Only the instructors at the training centre have a clue, but their interests and yours are not aligned. That's why hiring maids is almost always about luck and not so much about skill in choosing. After all, almost everybody looks for the same qualities so it's not rocket science for maid bios to reflect those things.

The only thing I can suggest for next time is to do a video conference and, at the risk of repeating, confirm with your candidate everything that has been stated on her bio. Sometimes you will be able to uncover inconsistencies. Of course if there is intention to lie, there's nothing you can do.

There was once, many years ago, when I managed to get half of the agent fee back. That's because the bio given to me for a Myanmar maid veered too far from reality. However it was a rather primitive set-up (they had no training centre in Myanmar). I don't think bigger agencies will bow to such fee refund requests.

camleelaa
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby lck » Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:26 pm

sleect my 5 cents comments.....

What are the things that covered for the $2k++ ?

You can definitely get back the loan which you paid for the maid + insurance fee(pro-rated) . THe food and lodging fee cost around $10 per day for the maid to stay at the agency. The max that you require to pay is $210 (for 3 weeks). If luckily someone chosen your new maid within the next 3 days, you will just need to pay for $30.00. The rest of $180.00 will be refund to you.

Are you require to pay for replacement maid fee ? If NO, my advice to you is to wait and see whether there is any replacement maid in the current agency. (Might heng heng get one....is really luck).

But if u think the agency is screw up and service poor, you might want to go for another agency . For infor, I had 3 maids all from H.Keper at Hougang Green. The maids were trained well (but also depend on luck but higher chance of getting a good one).

If you really intend to terminate with the current agency, check with them when you can get the cheque. Don't let them delay the payment... majority of the agency have the $$ jus that they refuse to pay up and just wanted you to get the replacement from them.

To conclude, MORE REPLACEMENT = GENERATE MORE PROFIT FOR THE AGENCY.

Be more careful when you chose the next maid and if the bio data are not details and they cannot answer to your queries, you better think twice.

for $$ is not sure, you can call the contact that i provided in my post.

don't let the agency off easily... and we have the rights and seek for the $$.

lck
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby sleect » Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:15 pm

I do not expect the new maid to perform to our expectation immediately. I can accept if the maid is willing to admit her mistake and put in effort to learn but her attitude is hopeless. I was so pissed off the other day and just wanted to get her out of my sight, hence, did not pursue further with the agent. On top of that, me and wife working, and have to look for a nanny for my 18 mth old daughter, my eldest will be with my Mum (she can't handle the young one due to health). Luckily we manage to find one at our neighbouring block, hope my daughter is able to settle in. I will definitely take it up with the agent again. Seems that in some way, we are always at the losing end. Anyway, thanks for the feedbacks.

sleect
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby Simplify » Fri Mar 15, 2013 1:38 pm

Hi

Indeed agency are really not responsible and professional in providing service that we paid them for. They are just after your $$$ and all else comes later, if not at all.

That is why I get my maid on my own and have done all the paperwork and leg work by myself.

However if you are doing what I am doing, you may still need to engage a "representative licensed agency" accredited by the Philippine Embassy in SIN to handle some administrative stuff which Employer do.

My Filipino maid arrived last Friday and I have paid less than $1800 in all.

Simplify
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby 30woman » Wed Mar 20, 2013 2:32 pm

I recently have a very bad encounter with Univer--l maid agency. Located in both marine parade and lucky plaza. I went in naively to think that by them charging me almost $2k for a transfer maid, stating "life time replacement" leh, sounds like a great deal rite? But once they collected the fees n aft I got the maid, it's so difficult to get in contact with anyone in their agency. Aft 4 months, I have problem with the maid and would like to change but I can't even get hold of anyone despite repeated calls for days!! A week has passed and no follow up from them. I requested for a refund and they said its impossible, go read the service agreement. So what am I supposed to do now? I feel so cheated!! Please DO NOT use them!

30woman
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby lck » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:17 pm

Pse contact the following :

Singapore Employment Agenices (In charge of ALL AGENCY)
Tel : 68362618 / Fax : 68362690 / aeas.org.sg
email : aeas.org@gmail.com
Address : 9 Jalan Kuloh #03-77 Singapore 160009

They will be able to assist you .

Previously MOM directed me to a link( Under MOM website) to retrieve the information of the agency . But require us to pay $5.00 plus for the infor. The information contained the capital of the company and the owner of the agency . The house address of the owner is part of the infor. I was prepared to go direct to the owner and luckily they managed to refund me the $$ .

The agreement is likely is standard for all agency as long they are registered with CASE. But some agency just ignore the agreement .

Whatever they said not refundable is not true. The loan u paid for the maid, insurance ... Can be refund back. Unlimited Replacement sound "good" but to the agency, they are not require to refund you back. Cos they still provide you with the service and continue to let you replace the maid.

Unless you want to TERMINATE their service, they will have to refund you. You have the rights to terminate and get the refund.

If they keep giving you more excuses, just tell direct that you have went to MOM to complain and fight for your case. The agency will prefer to settle with you .
Last edited by lck on Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

lck
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby lck » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:24 pm

Important thing is u must have the patient. They are registered company and definitely they will paid us.
Last edited by lck on Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

lck
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Re: Lesson learnt REFUND Issues- Unethical agency

Postby Steadyberry » Wed Mar 20, 2013 9:41 pm

I had bad experiences with maid agency too. They are liars. I told them I needed a maid urgently and called them a few times to check when my maid be coming in. They gave me excuses, passport not ready, this not ready that not ready. Finally my maid came. I asked my maid did she has problems with her documents. My maid told me no. Infact she arrived for many days already but was told by agent that I was too busy to pick her up. She told me she spent her time cleaning the hostel and the agency office. There were more but there is no point mentioning now. In the end, I decided to be a sahm and get help from part-time cleaners. No more agent or maid issues. But also no more hair treatment and facials etc.. too but it was worth it.

Steadyberry
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