Guide to employment, payroll and benefits in

Marshall Islands

Rivermate offers complete payroll, benefits and compliance services for

Marshall Islands

01. Overview

Last updated: 

August 19, 2021

United States Dollar
Ease of doing business
GDP growth

02. Grow your team in

Marshall Islands

with Rivermate

Payroll, benefits, taxes, and compliance can be difficult to manage in

Marshall Islands

, particularly if you don't have established local relationships. You can hire employees in

Marshall Islands

effectively, conveniently, and in full compliance with all relevant labor laws using Rivermate's global employment solution. We handle the responsibilities and legal risks associated with foreign employment so you can concentrate on growing your company.

03. Summary

The Marshall Islands, formally the Republic of the Marshall Islands, is a Pacific Ocean island nation located near the Equator and just west of the International Date Line. Geographically, the nation is part of Micronesia's broader island group. The country's 58,413 inhabitants are dispersed across 29 coral atolls and 1,156 individual islands and islets. Majuro is the capital and largest city. With 97.87% of its territory made up of water, it is the most water-rich sovereign state in the world. Wake Island to the north, Kiribati to the southeast, Nauru to the south, and Federated States of Micronesia to the west share maritime borders. Majuro is home to 52.3% of Marshall Islanders. According to United Nations data, the population in 2018 was estimated to be 58,413. In 2016, urbanization was characterized as 73.3% of the population. The Marshall Islands have a population density of 295 people per square kilometer, with a predicted 2020 population of 59,190. Micronesians arrived in the Marshall Islands in canoes around the second millennium BC, with interisland navigation allowed by conventional stick charts. They finally made their home here. Europeans first visited the archipelago in the 1520s, beginning with Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese explorer in Spain's service, Juan Sebastián Elcano, and Miguel de Saavedra. In August 1526, Spanish explorer Alonso de Salazar reported seeing an atoll. Other Spanish and English ships embarked on similar expeditions. John Marshall, who visited in 1788, gave the islands their name. The inhabitants referred to the islands as "jolet jen Anij" in the past. Spain claimed the islands in 1592, and European powers recognised its sovereignty in 1874. Since 1528, they had been officially a part of the Spanish East Indies. Later, in 1885, Spain sold some of the islands to the German Empire, and they became part of German New Guinea that year, run by the island's trading companies, especially the Jaluit Company. The Marshall Islands were occupied by Japan during World War I, and the League of Nations merged them with other former German territories to create the South Seas Mandate in 1920. In 1944, the United States took possession of the islands as part of the Gilbert and Marshall Islands campaign during World War II. Nuclear tests on the Bikini Atoll began in 1946 and ended in 1958. In 1965, the United States founded the Congress of Micronesia as part of a strategy to give Pacific islands more autonomy. In May 1979, the Marshall Islands gained independence from the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, whose constitution and president were officially recognised by the United States. In a Compact of Free Association with the United States, full sovereignty or self-government was achieved. Since 1983, the Marshall Islands has been a member of the Pacific Community, and since 1991, it has been a member of the United Nations.

04. Public holidays

05. Types of leave

Paid time off

Public holidays

Sick days

Maternity leave

Paternity leave

Parental leave

Other leave

06. Employment termination

Termination process

According to Marshall Islands legislation, redundancy can constitute grounds for termination and dismissal.

Notice period

The Marshall Islands' law makes no provision for a notice period.

Severance pay

Employers in the Marshall Islands are not required to provide severance payments to employees whose contracts are terminated.

Probation period

Each new permanent employee is required to serve a six-month probationary period, which may be extended up to a maximum of six months during the first twelve months of the initial appointment.

07. Working hours



08. Minimum wage


The minimum wage is one of the country's most important compensation laws, and it varies by industry. The public sector, government work, and nonprofit organizations, for example, have a minimum wage of $3.00 per hour, but the maritime industry is governed by collective bargaining agreements (CBAs).

09. Employee benefits


The Marshall Islands' health-care system is still in its early phases, as the Ministry of Health collaborates with Community Health Councils to offer universal care to people. Private health insurance is accessible, but companies are not required to offer it under their employment contracts. Your business may or may not opt to provide private insurance as a perk to its workers.

A probationary term, pay on yearly vacations, public holidays, sick leaves, maternity leave, paternity leave, and overtime pay are all mandated by law. Social security payments are sometimes included in statutory benefits.

10. Why Rivermate as your Employer of Record / PEO?

Establishing an entity in

Marshall Islands

to hire a team takes time, money, and effort. The labor law in

Marshall Islands

has strong worker employment protection, requiring great attention to details and a thorough awareness of local best practices. Rivermate makes expanding into

Marshall Islands

simple and effortless. We can assist you with hiring your preferred talent, managing HR and payroll, and ensuring compliance with local legislation without the hassle of establishing a foreign branch office or subsidiary. Our PEO and Global Employer of Record solutions in

Marshall Islands

give you peace of mind so you can focus on running your business.

Please contact us if you'd like to learn more about how Rivermate can help you hire employees in

Marshall Islands

via our Employer of Record / PEO solution.

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