Population: (2023 est.) 5,209,000
Monetary Unit: Liberian Dollar (L$, LRD)
Language(s): English (Official Language)
Liberia, officially known as the Republic of Liberia, is a country in West Africa. Monrovia is the capital and the largest city of Liberia. The country was founded by freed American slaves. Liberia is the only African country to have become independent without having to resort to war or revolt.
The public holidays in Liberia are as follows;
- New Year’s Day (1st January)
- Armed Forces Day (11th February)
- National Decoration Day (9th March)
- Joseph Jenkins Roberts’ Birthday (15th March)
- Fast and Prayer Day (8th April)
- National Redemption Day (12th April)
- National Unification Day (14th May)
- Independence Day (26th July)
- National Flag Day (24th August)
- Thanksgiving (3rd November)
- William V.S. Tubman’s Birthday (29th November)
- Christmas Day (25th December)
Under Liberian employment law, probationary periods may not be less than 1 month and cannot exceed 3 months.
After three years of service with the same employer, employees are entitled to two weeks of leave (based on the number of working days), which increases to three weeks after four years. Employees who have worked for the same employer for five years are eligible for four weeks of leave.
14 weeks of paid maternity leave are available to female employees.
Though Liberia does not have any paternity leave provided for by law, 5 days of unpaid paternity leave are available to fathers.
No guaranteed sick leave in Liberia.
Employees are only entitled to severance payments equal to their outstanding salary unless they have engaged in a serious violation of conduct. In situations where the company is insolvent, liquidating, etc., employees may also be eligible to redundancy/severance payments.
13th / 14th Month Pay: The payment of the wage for the 13th or 14th month is not mandated by law. Although there is no proof that bonuses are common, employees of the government are more likely to obtain advantages.
Types of Work Visas in Liberia
The most common types of visas that the Liberian government issues include; Tourist visas, Business visas, Diplomatic and Official visas. Additional categories are based on the intended duration of the applicant’s stay in Liberia. These visas include:
- Single-entry visas, which are valid for a maximum of three months
- Multiple-entry visas, which are valid for up to one or two years (or three years for United States citizens)
Foreign employees will most likely need to obtain a multiple-entry visa. In addition to the visa, they will need a Liberian work permit.
Requirements to Obtain Liberia Work Visas
- A passport with at least one blank page and six months of validity
- Two recent passport photographs
- A signed and completed visa application form
- Proof of medical insurance for the duration of the applicant’s stay in Liberia
- Evidence of sufficient financial means
- Proof of accommodations for travel, such as a flight itinerary
- Proof of accommodations in Liberia
- A certificate of immunization against yellow fever
- A letter containing information about the applicant’s employment contract with a business in Liberia, which should be signed by a representative of the company
Requirements to Obtain a Liberian Work Permit
- A completed application form
- An employment offer from a company in Liberia
- A cover letter from the applicant’s employer
- Two passport photos
- A bank statement from the employer
- A background check from the applicant’s country of residence
- Professional qualifications
Visa requirements can vary from one embassy to another. For this reason, foreign employees should begin the visa application process by reaching out to the diplomatic officials for Liberia in their country of residence to double-check the requirements as well as the working days and hours of the nearest embassy or consulate. After confirming these details, applicants should complete the following steps in the application process:
- Complete the visa application form and gather all of the required documents.
- Pay the visa application fee.
- Submit the application and supporting documents to the nearest Liberian embassy or consulate.
- Attend a visa interview at the Liberian embassy or consulate (if this is a requirement in the applicant’s country of residence).
- Wait while Liberian immigration officials process the visa application.
- After receiving notice that Liberian officials have approved the visa request, return to the embassy to collect the passport and visa
- After obtaining the visa, applicants can travel to Liberia.
Applicants will need to apply for a Liberian work permit separately. They will need to submit the completed work permit application form and any supporting documents to the Liberian Ministry of Labor. Once the Ministry approves the application, the foreign national may begin working in Liberia.
Employees should be aware that Liberian work permits are tied to the employer. If they change jobs during their time in Liberia, they will need to obtain a new work permit.
In the event of a “severe violation of duty” or a “complete lack of aptitude to function,” an employee may be fired. Examples include unprovoked assault on the employer, continued contempt for the business’s safety regulations, and leaking of trade secrets.
When terminating an employee’s employment, an employer must offer at least 2 weeks (for temporary employees) or 4 weeks (for permanent employees) of written notice (salaried employee). It’s possible to receive payment in lieu of notice. However, workers who engage in a serious violation of their obligations may be let go without compensation or prior notice.
These include probationary period, annual leave, public holidays, sick leave, maternity leave, paternity leave, overtime pay, notice period, and severance pay. Statutory benefits also include social security benefits, and they are mandated by law.
The maximum number of hours worked each day or week is eight (8 hours).
Overtime is defined as time put in beyond the regular working day. No less than one and a quarter times the base wage per hour shall be paid as overtime compensation.
When terminating an employee’s employment, an employer must offer at least 2 weeks (for temporary employees) or 4 weeks (for permanent employees) of written notice (salaried employee). It’s possible to receive payment in lieu of notice.
Individual residents in Liberia must pay tax based on their employment income, regardless of where the services are performed or the employer is located, as follows:
0 – 70,000 LRD = 0%
70,001 – 200,000 LRD = 5%
200,001 – 800,000 LRD = 6500 LRD + 15%
Above 800,000 LRD = 96,500 LTD + 25%
Employer Contributions: Employer’s monthly mandatory social security contribution is 4.75% of the gross monthly remuneration.
Employee Contributions: The Employee’s monthly mandatory social security contribution is 3% of the gross monthly salary.
The Employee Social Security deductions are detailed as follows:
National Pension Scheme:
- Retirement Pension Benefit
- Invalidity Pension Benefit
- Survivor’s Lump Sum
- Retirement Grant
- Invalidity Grant
- Survivor’s Grant
Employment Injury Scheme:
- Medical Benefit
- Temporary Disablement Benefit
- Permanent Disablement Benefit
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- Death Benefit
- Funeral Grant
For the regular costs incurred while earning revenue during the tax year, a taxpayer is entitled to a deduction. These costs comprise, among others; depreciation expenditure or amortization of capital, losses sustained in a business throughout the tax year, business interest on business debt, etc.
VAT in Liberia is 10% and 7% for goods and services, respectively. While a 15% rate applies to telecommunications. Every registered manufacturer and service provider shall file VAT returns for each tax period (calendar month) within 21 days after the end of the period, whether any goods or service tax is due for such period.
Goods and services tax (GST) GST is levied at the rates of 7% and 10%; a 15% rate applies to telecommunication services.
Social security contributions are paid by the employee and the employer at the rates of 4% and 6% respectively on the sum of the remuneration.
Withholding tax on Dividends, Interest, and Royalties is usually levied at the rate of 15%. Withholding tax may also be levied on other payments such as;
Natural Resources Payments – 15%
Rental Income – 10%/15%
Management & Consultancy Fees – 15%
Contract Services – 10%/15%