Recovery of Legal Fees / Contract Clause

This is a matter that I think is worth addressing. Many foreign nationals call me from time to time and explain that they are having difficulty obtaining monies owed to them under a contract that has been terminated or otherwise expired.

Oftentimes, the amount in dispute is nominal, compared to the amount that the person would need to pay in legal fees to recover the disputed amount.

Please note that Taiwan law does not provide for the recovery of legal fees when an attorney has been retained to assist in the collection of monies owed unless the employment contract explicitly states that such legal fees are recoverable.

Thus, if you go to an attorney with a claim against your employer for an amount of NT$ 70,000, for example, the legal fees to recover that amount could well exceed the amount of your claim… and you, not your employer, will be responsible for paying the legal fees.

As such, many employers are happy to offer only a fraction of what you might be owed by contract or law, as the employer knows that if you try to recover the full amount with the assistance of an attorney, it will not be worth your while and you may end up paying more than what you recieve.


If possible, have a clause included in your contract that stipulates that legal fees are recoverable by the winning party in the event of a dispute regarding monies owed.