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EMPLOYERS OBLIGATIONS TO FILE ANNUAL RETURNS

The Kenya Employment Act places various reporting obligations on the Employer. In this Alert, we discuss the obligation to file annual returns with the National Employment Authority (“NEA”).

The NEA was established by the National Employment Authority Act, 2016 (“NEA ACT”), which sets out the roles and functions of the NEA as well as obligations of employers. The NEA Act provides a comprehensive institutional framework for employment management; enhancement of employment promotion interventions; and increasing access to employment by the youth, minorities, and marginalized groups and for connected purposes

Employers in Kenya are required to notify the NEA of any vacancies, any terminated employees, any abolished positions in the employer’s organisations as well as file employers’ annual returns per the requirements of Section 76 – 81 of the Employment Act, 2007 (“Employment Act”). This was pursuant to a notice published on 26th June 2019 in the local dailies by the NEA.

By requiring employers to file annual returns, the NEA seemingly assumed the role of the Director of Employment, which is the office under the Employment Act. to which notifications and annual returns are filed by employers.

Notably, the NEA Act does not require the filing of annual returns by employers with the NEA nor does it grant the NEA the power to require such filings.

Additionally, the Employment Act places the aforementioned reporting obligations only to employers with twenty-five employees and more.

That said, it may be prudent for employers with 25 employees or more, to file the notifications and returns as directed by NEA notwithstanding that NEA lacks the jurisdiction to enforce the aforementioned requirements of the Employment Act. It should be appreciated that the obligation to report, nevertheless, exists.

This Alert does not represent legal advice by its author.

For legal advice contact our partner: Samson Mac’Oduol at samson@ahmednasir.law