Employment: Discontinuation of Employee's Transfer Allowance

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asked on Dec 26, 2017 at 11:20
edited on Jan 5, 2018 at 05:45
I have an employee who was transferred from East Malaysia to West Malaysia in year 2003.  The Company provided her with transfer fixed allowance, transportation, hand phone and accommodation allowances at total of RM1700 per month.  We still allowing her to claim for the allowance as company is able to claim the allowance from client where she is based (under one of our contract).

When the contract is not renewed, my boss asked me to discontinue the allowance with the following main reasons:
1. That she is already married to west Malaysian and settled down in Selangor with her family during the period she was here in west Malaysia
2. The allowances are normally to help a staff to assist them during the transition period and it not suppose to be for long term.

However the company thinks it has been generous enough to continue providing her with the allowance for the past 10 years.  The problem we did not highlight in the letter about the duration of the allowance she can received or indicated any reason to discontinue them.

My question, can the company discontinue the allowance with the reason stated above?  What is the chance for the Company if the staff is to bring this matter to court.

For your info, the staff had replied our letter on her disagreement and it sound very legal as she had consulted a lawyer to draft the letter.  Appreciate your view on this matter.
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answered on Dec 26, 2017 at 11:51
Since it was deemed a  "transfer allowance"  without duration stated and not an "re-allocation allowance" with period defined. Furthermore if there is no linkage to that client's contract, it would be a tough fight to win in the event of lawsuit. That is my personal opinion.

Hope to hear from lawyers passing by.
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