Run away Maid - Any experience to share on next steps?

My Indonesian maid decided to walk out on us - as we had put her on probation for 1 month, hoping her work quality would improve. This was after watching her work quality suffer over a period of 6 months. She was a full time live-in maid - taking care of a family of 2 adults and a baby.

She has left behind her belongings including passport, clothes etc, and run away - as she did not want to be sent back to Indonesia. She left behind a letter to the effect.

I have complained to the police as well as to the Council of Labor Affairs - CLA. I am told my obligation as an employer ends there - as she has voluntarily gone away, leaving behind a letter.

Does any one have experience on

o Can I get a replacement maid who is a foreigner ? I am told no, by some people - and that I need to take responsibility to have this lady deported before I can hire another foreigner.

o Any contact numbers for local maids who are English speaking, and willing to work as live-in, in Taipei

Thanks - Clueless employer in Taipei !

Aren’t you at all worried about the maid’s predicament?

This must be the piece de resistance of trolls … what the hell … why does she need to take care of two adults? Are you both handicapped? Incapable of feeding and clothing yourselves? Did she say why she was leaving, or was that too painfully obvious to state? :unamused:

It must have been pretty bad for her to leave without her passport. Also, by leaving you guys she is now blacklisted and can’t get another legal job and if/when she gets back to Indonesia she can’t come back here. What did you guys do to her that after six months she was willing to become a refugee in Taiwan?! I have heard horror stories about physical and sexual abuse against foreign maids by Taiwanese and they still stayed with thier employers. Did she owe you money in some way that she felt like she couldn’t pay back unless she worked for you for the next 20 years at Indonesian wages?


You guys are really jumping to conclusions. It is indeed strange that she should run away without her passport. However, to start suggesting her employer acted improperly is unfair.

I’ve noticed many Westerners are very uncomfortable with hired help, the thinking that there is something slightly immoral about hiring a maid, especially if she is from a third-world country.

I’ve hired numerous natives, mostly as porters and guides, and found that they were very grateful of the employment. And they fully understood the necessity for the occasional well-intentioned flogging.

I’m glad I don’t work for you.

Who leaves in such a hurry that they don’t even take their passport? Was it in her handwriting? Did she have a demanding boyfriend or anything like that?

I’ve seen too many episodes of Law & Order…

If you really need someone, look into the Amah registry at the Community Services Center.

I doubt you’ll find anyone on their registry who wants to live-in, and I’m told that rates are $250/hour and up for part-time, as much as $35,000 for full-time, but if you’re in a bind, it’s worth looking into.

My spidey sense is a tingling on this. Just doesn’t seem “right”.

I knew of a family who had an American nanny. At first she just did the visa runs every month to HK, while the employer worked on getting the govt to allow expats to bring a nanny from their home country. They returned to the US just a short time after working out the visa issues.

I also know of an Australian nanny who is currently here with her employer, so it’s possible. Not sure if it matters what country your caregiver is from.

What exactly was it that needed improvement? Not dusting the top of the refrigerator enough? Not enough sugar in the moring coffee? Did these two adults have “special” needs?

What exactly is it you need help doing? Are you interested in tracking down your “escapee,” or is that yesterday’s news and you want to get a “proper” caregiver? You say you want a foreigner and then you say you want a local. Which is it?

While I too think it is unfair to say that the employer abused this girl, I also think it is worth noting that she apparently started out OK and ended up with reduced work habits and eventually ran away during her stay with this family.

To the “Guest” who first posted: Could you answer a few questions?

  1. My maid left because ________.
  2. I think her work quality fell because _________.
  3. My interest in her now is __________.
  4. Now I’d rather have a local caregiver because __________.
  5. If this experience has taught me anything it is ___________.

I dont think this is a troll

I have heard of a few cases like this.
Typical scenario: Maid arrives. Has very little free time to socialise. Becomes socialy isolated & probably depressed (resulting in deteriorating work standards) . The only form of socialisation she can think of is to phone home. Huge phone bill arrives. Employers deduct phone bill from maids wages meaning that she basically has to work for nothing for several months. Faced with this ,maid runs away.

The only way a maid can run away is without her passport as the employer holds the passport.

Why did the “Indonesian” maid run off without her passport?

I guess because the owners… er, sorry, the employers, were holding her passport.

Is anyone else as bothered by this practice as I? It really pisses me off that an employer thinks he or she has the right to hold onto an employee’s passport.

I wouldn’t surrender my passport to my employer. I’ll bet Harry Crack wouldn’t surrender his passport to an employer either.

We don’t know the entire story or circumstances regarding the original poster’s situation. But he did provide plenty of facts from which we could speculate.

This is interesting.

Still - I would get the mafia to find my maid - and make sure that they taught her not to run away again.

[b]I have just finished cleaning up this thread, the rest of it is in the flame forum. Please keep it clean and stay on topic!

What I don’t understand is all the name calling and negative comments, especially towards guest, I find comments like some of posts I moved to the flame forum less then helpful. Guest has posted a problem he would like help with, he didn’t post to get flamed and criticized, at least I don’t see it this way. Am I missing something? :? Don’t answer this here, you can PM me if you need to.[/b]

[quote=“Mr He”]This is interesting.

Still - I would get the mafia to find my maid - and make sure that they taught her not to run away again.[/quote]

OK my humor can be bad - and I was trying to be funny. Given all the negativity here, I felt that it was called for. No reason to rate my post a -3 because of that.

If I were the guy I would find another maid and try to make sure that it worked out this time.

There. You’re even now.

Thanks Wolf.


I posted my original message looking for advice on next steps.

While a couple of responses were useful ( and thanks to those of you who did provide me with the same), :smiley: - I seem to have generated a host of questions from others, as well as wise-cracks at others who responded.

To the curious lot who wanted to know if my maid was sexually abused, the answer is No.

As to why she left, we caught her lying to us on more than one occasion and it bothered us - if we could trust her with our child anymore. I will not go into details of what the lies were.Therefore the choice was to either do away with her and do the work ourselves or get someone else. Her going back would have meant that she was going to be out of pocket
having to pay her agent back for whatever she had committed to - and which she backed out of.

In response to the post which said ’ I wouldnt want to work for you’ - I wouldnt want to hire you either.

As to why I had the passport of my maid - she had left it with me for safe-keeping when she took up the assignment, but obviously could not give me a plausible excuse to take it back just before she decided to go away - especially after I had told her to shape up or get shipped out.

To the other post which wanted to know why 2 adults needed to be taken care of - its simply a matter of choice as to whether I want to be doing domestic chores or not . And, my employer reimburses the maid’s salary expense - which gives me the choice.

I did not want to go into all these details in my original post, as they are irrelevant to the issue that I was looking for advice on - but since some were more curious than others…


Its her passport. She would not have needed an excuse, “plausible” or otherwise, to ask you to return it. It belongs to her. Its her property. Understand?