Hire employees in

South Korea, hassle-free

Hire employees in South Korea, hassle-free

With Deel, your business can easily hire employees in South Korea. No more worrying about local laws, complex tax systems, or managing international payroll. Deel takes care of everything in 150+ countries.

The average onboarding time frame in South Korea is 1 day with Deel.

Download the Guide

Currency

South Korean Won (KRW)

Capital

Seoul

Official Language

Korean

Payroll Cycle

Monthly

Hire employees in South Korea. No entity needed.

Usually, to hire in South Korea, your business needs an entity. That means a local office, an address registered as a subsidiary, and an account with a local bank. All of this, plus navigating regional benefits, payroll, tax, and HR laws, can take months.

South Korea also treats contractors differently than full-time employees, so misclassifying a contractor could lead to fines. Deel lets you hire employees in South Korea quickly, easily, and compliantly. We even automate tax document collection, payroll, benefits, and more.

All the necessary benefits for South Korea
built right in

Deel allows you to provide localized benefits for employees in South Korea within minutes. All in one manageable online dashboard.

  • Pension Fund
  • Public Health Insurance
  • Unemployment Insurance
  • Workers Compensation Insurance

Our quickstart guide to hiring in South Korea

Navigate the tabs below to learn everything you need to know about hiring an employee in South Korea

Minimum Wage Requirements

The minimum wage is 9,160 WON per hour or 1,914,440 WON per month.

Individual Income Tax

The individual income tax ranges from 6% to 45%. Income tax is calculated according to progressive rates.

Income (KRW) Tax Rate (%)
Less than 5,000,000 6%
12,000 - 46,000 15%
46,000 - 88,000 24%
88,000 - 150,000 35%
150,000 - 300,000 38%
300,00 - 500,000 40%
500,000 - 1,000,000 42%
Above 1,000,000 45%

Employer Cost

The employer cost is generally estimated at 10.38% of the employee salary.

  • National pension - 4.50%
  • National health insurance - 3.43%
  • Long-term care insurance - 0.40%
  • Employment insurance - 1.05%
  • Workers' compensation insurance - 1.0%

Overtime Pay & Maximum Hours

Standard working hours are 8 hours per day, 40 hours per week. The standard work week is from Monday to Friday.

Overtime payment is mandatory. Hours outside of standard work hours are considered overtime. Employees can work a maximum of 12 hours per week. For additional hours, employees are paid a minimum of 150% of their average salary.

Maternity Leave

Pregnant employees are entitled to 90 days of paid leave. 45 days must be taken after the child's birth. The employee will receive 100% of their average salary during this leave. The employer is responsible for this pay. 60 days of this payment is paid by the employer, and the remaining 30 days can be reimbursed from the Social Security Fund.

The employee can extend leave using parental (childcare) leave.

Paternity Leave

Employees are entitled to 10 days of paid paternity leave. The employee will receive 100% of their average salary during this period, and the Social Security Fund will be responsible for this pay.

The employee can extend leave using parental (childcare) leave.

Parental Leave

Parental leave is complex in South Korea. Employees are entitled to up to 2 years of parental leave (1 year per parent). The leave can be taken 45 days after the birth of the child. Both parents can use leave at the same time. The employee will be paid:

  • For months 1 to 3 - 75% of 80% of the average salary (Upper limit is WON 1.5 million). They will be paid the remaining 25% after 6 months. For example, if the employee’s salary is WON 100, they will be paid 75% of WON 80 (80% of average salary) and the remaining 25% after 6 months.
  • For months 4 to 12 - 50% of their average wage (Upper limit is WON 1.2 million)

This leave is paid for by the government.

Sick Leave

Employees are not entitled to sick leave associated with non-work-related illnesses or injuries.

Termination Requirements

Terminations in South Korea can be complex. There is no at-will termination in South Korea for employers and termination must be done for just cause.

Compliant terminations include:

  • Voluntarily by the employee
  • By mutual agreement
  • Unilaterally by the employer based on:
    • Criminal offense or misconduct
    • Neglecting duties stipulated in the agreement
    • Received 3 warning letters
    • Inability to perform duties stipulated in the agreement
    • Criminal conduct or misconduct in the performance of duties
    • Urgent business necessity to save a failing business from imminent bankruptcy
  • By the expiration of the contract

Notice Period

The minimum notice period is 1 month.

Severance for Employees

In South Korea, all employees who have worked for longer than 1 year are entitled to severance pay. Severance pay is 30 days of salary for each year of service. There are two systems for severance pay and the employer can choose from the two systems (further details in notes below).

Entitlement payment and conditions will depend on a case-by-case basis according to what is approved by the legal department of the company.

Paid Time Off

Full-time and part-time employees are entitled to 15 days of paid time off (PTO) a year. PTO can be accrued monthly at 1.25 days per month. However, employees can claim all PTO before it is accrued. Some differences apply based on length of employment:

  • For workers who have worked less than 1 year or who have worked for 80% of the year - 1 day of PTO for every month of service
  • For workers who have worked for over 3 years - 1 additional day of PTO for every 2 years of continued service exceeding the first year (up to 25 days)

Public Holidays

South Korea celebrates 13 national holidays over a total of 17 days. National holidays include:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Seollal (3 days)
  • Independence Movement Day
  • Presidential Election
  • Children’s Day
  • Buddha’s Birthday
  • Local Election Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Liberation Day
  • Chuseok (3 days)
  • National Foundation Day
  • Hangeul Day
  • Christmas

Onboarding

Onboarding takes 1 business day

Employment Contract Details

Contracts must be in Korean and English and can be bilingual. They must be in writing and signed by both parties.

A contract must include:

  • Name
  • Employment period
  • Place of work
  • Working hours
  • Wages
  • Vacations and leaves
  • Retirement payment
  • Termination conditions

Probation Period

Probation periods are not mandatory. There is no minimum probation period. The maximum probation period is 6 months.
btn_download

Download the complete guide to hiring in South Korea

Simply fill out your details below to gain access to our complete guide to hiring in South Korea.

Hiring in South Korea, hassle-free

With Deel, your business can easily hire employees in South Korea. No more worrying about local laws, complex tax systems, or managing
international payroll. Deel takes care of everything in 150+ countries.

Group (8)

599 USD

Management fee

Group (9)

10.38%

Estimate Employer Cost

*of employee salary

Want to learn the cost of hiring an employee in South Korea?

View our Employee Cost Calculator

We have a 4.9 out of 5 rating on Trustpilot

We're trusted by over 6,000 businesses all over the world. Read our reviews on Trustpilot.com.

5 Stars

Deel is the best!!

“Deel is an amazing platform! It's super intuitive and user friendly, plus it runs suuuuper smoothly!! It has great options for paying and withdrawing money, plus it helps you keep super organized with your spending. They also have great support and are super friendly with all the questions you might have :D I would definitely recommend it!!”

Manuela Echeverry
Nov 20, 2020
5 Stars

A contracting life-changer!

"This has by far the singular tool that made my contracting work amazing. It used to be that contract management and payouts was a nightmare — Deel makes everything so easy especially with its Transferwise integration. Everyone gets paid on time and kept happy. I also contacted their support a couple of times for some small questions and they’ve been nothing short of amazing. If you’re a contractor or someone who hires contractors then definitely give Deel a go."

Kix Panganiban
Dec 3, 2020
5 Stars

Great service offering!!

"The Deel platform has been super effective for my team and I and has enabled us to bring on workers globally. The platform allows us to onboard individuals seamlessly and with no issues at all. Highly recommend."

Michael US
Oct 28, 2020
5 Stars

Terrific service

"Great service, amazing customer care, terrific platform, both for the company and for the contractors/employees. Saving everyone's time and money"

Nunzio Martinello
Dec 15, 2020
5 Stars

Deel is a game-changer for distributed teams

"Deel has been instrumental in helping us both open and operate our EU operations. It's super simple to set up and implement and the support team has been world-class. I can't recommend them enough!"

Jeremie Habib
Nov 16, 2020
5 Stars

Great app with great customer service

"Great app with great customer service, with great attention to details and legal requirements. Looking forward to keep using it!"

Felipe Marote
Jan 29, 2021

Deel makes growing remote and international teams effortless. Ready to get started?

+

Countries

+

Customers

+

Legal experts

+

Currencies