The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has a new established of labor rules governing personal-sector work relations. On February 2, 2022, Federal Decree Regulation No. 33 of 2021 took impact, repealing and changing Federal Law No. 8 of 1980, as amended, in its entirety.
The labor law changes are relatively significant and necessitate amendments to existing work contracts, as very well as modifications to guidelines and techniques concerning upcoming agreements with new staff. Employers have until eventually February 2023 to carry out the new labor law adjustments. The UAE authorities is preparing to difficulty executive restrictions to offer further more instruction on the new guidelines.
In addition to the labor legislation alterations, the UAE authorities has changed to a Monday–Friday do the job agenda (with a 50 %-working day on Fridays) for all federal government staff members. While not required in the personal sector, several non-public sector corporations are arranging to put into action a Monday–Friday routine to comport with the new federal government routine.
The adhering to is an overview of important variations to the UAE’s labor legal guidelines.
Set-Phrase Contract Needs
This is the most substantive modify and demands businesses to amend latest employment agreements (to the extent that they are not previously preset expression). Employers will have to spot all workforce on fastened-term work contracts with a utmost phrase of three several years. Agreement phrases may possibly be shorter if agreed upon. There is no greatest variety of fastened-phrase contracts that companies might enter into successively.
The optimum probationary time period less than the new labor legislation stays unchanged at 6 months. The new regulation does, however, introduce specific notification demands through the probation interval. Especially, if an employee is on probation, companies ought to now provide a minimum amount of fourteen days’ written notice of the intention to terminate the employment deal.
If an personnel decides to resign through the probationary period, the employee ought to:
Versatile Operating Arrangements
The new regulation expressly recognizes a flexible operate arrangement as a sort of employment partnership to which get-togethers could agree.
Under the prior labor regulation, supervisors and supervisors were being exempt from additional time. The new regulation is silent on this exemption. It is anticipated that the forthcoming govt rules from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MHRE) will element no matter whether and how the exemption will apply under the new labor law.
Underneath the new regulation, businesses are not necessary to implement a relaxation day on Fridays. It can be on any working day of the week by settlement of the functions.
Forex of Income Payments
Employers may pay out employees’ salaries in any currency agreed upon by the get-togethers in the work agreement. It is anticipated that the forthcoming government laws will offer even more detail on how this provision beneath the new legislation operates in follow for businesses that are necessary to pay out workforce through the current Wages Safety Method (WPS).
Yearly Leave Rollover
Under the new legislation, staff have to use their annual depart in the exact same calendar year that it accrues, unless otherwise agreed by the parties. The new legislation does not give depth on how to tackle unused go away (i.e., whether or not it can be deemed forfeited). It is envisioned that the forthcoming government regulations from the MHRE will deliver additional information on this difficulty. Personnel are entitled to payment in lieu of unused go away upon the termination of work calculated on the basis of an employee’s simple salary only.
Maternity Depart, Parental Leave, and More Leave
The new legislation will increase maternity depart entitlements to sixty calendar days the initial forty-5 times are paid out in comprehensive and the remaining fifteen times at just one-half fork out. The new regulation prohibits companies from decreasing an employee’s maternity shell out in the celebration that an worker has not concluded one full calendar year of work at the time of availing of maternity depart. Workforce are now entitled to maternity leave and spend in circumstances in which the staff miscarries just after six months of carrying, suffers a stillbirth, or experiences the demise of an infant immediately after beginning. Workers who give beginning to disabled or ill children whose health situations require “constant companion[ship]” are entitled to an extra 30 calendar times of maternity leave (with entire fork out), which can be further more prolonged for an supplemental 30 days (unpaid).
The regulation decreases employees’ entitlement to nursing breaks from eighteen months to six months from the day of supply. Workforce however have prolonged unpaid time off immediately after exhausting maternity leave for pregnancy related health care condition, but the entitlement has been diminished to forty-five times from 100 days.
Compassionate Go away
In the function of the death of an employee’s partner or wife, the legislation entitles the worker to 5 days’ paid out depart. In the party of the loss of life of an employee’s guardian, kid, sibling or grandparent, the law entitles the employee to 3 days’ go away.
Examine go away
Personnel with extra than two years’ services who are affiliated or consistently learning with an approved UAE academic establishment are entitled to ten doing the job times of examine go away for every 12 months. The new regulation is silent as to no matter whether this need to be paid or could be unpaid. It is expected that the forthcoming executive rules will supply even more detail on this position.
Companies could suspend staff for up to 30 days, with one-50 % fork out all through a disciplinary investigation. An worker will be entitled to reimbursement of all withheld fork out if the personnel is in the long run cleared of wrongdoing.
The minimum recognize interval for the termination of an work contract stays 30 times, but the most detect period of time is now capped at ninety days. The new labor legislation also imposes minimal recognize durations for terminating current unlimited-time period contracts prior to applying the new fixed-phrase contracts. In this occasion, the employer ought to give at minimum thirty days’ see if the staff was employed for significantly less than 5 a long time at minimum sixty days’ observe if the personnel was employed for extra than 5 yrs but significantly less than ten years and ninety days’ recognize if the employee utilized for a lot more than ten many years.
Grounds for termination
Redundancy termination is viewed as a legitimate grounds for a termination of an work deal beneath the new regulation. Below the prior legislation, redundancy was not recognized. There are additional grounds for “for-cause” termination, like wherever an employee: (i) abuses his or her position for profit or individual obtain or (ii) commences perform for another employer with no complying with the relevant rules and methods.
Personnel are now entitled to a person working day of unpaid go away per week through the detect interval to seem for new employment.
Less than the prior regulation, an end-of-services gratuity (EOSG) for a resigning staff was lowered primarily based on how long the staff had been utilized (i.e., there was no EOSG if the staff experienced not accomplished at least one 12 months of company one-3rd EOSG if the employee experienced completed up to a few years’ company two-thirds EOSG if the worker had in between 3 and 5 years’ service and 100 per cent EOSG if the personnel had concluded far more than five years’ company). Under the new legislation, staff members will be entitled to full EOSG when they resign, furnished they have accomplished at the very least a single year’s provider.
Payment of Conclude-of-Support Entitlements
All termination entitlements must be paid to workforce within just fourteen times immediately after the termination date. Prior to the new legislation, there was no expressly stated deadline.
The greatest put up-termination restricted interval for noncompete agreements below the new law is two years.
Provisions Relating to Office Guidelines
The new regulation also incorporates provisions that businesses may perhaps want to consider into account, even if they are not included in employment agreements, which include:
Discrimination and Equal Shell out
The new labor legislation delivers protection for staff members from discrimination in the workplace on the grounds of race, shade, sexual intercourse, faith, national origin, social origin, and incapacity. Neither being pregnant nor maternity is not mentioned as a secured attribute nonetheless, companies are prohibited from terminating the employment of an staff (or threatening to terminate the work of an worker) because of to the fact that she is expecting or on maternity go away.
On top of that, the law supplies that there should really be equivalent shell out for guys and females for the similar perform. This was first introduced by Federal Decree By-Law No. 6 of 2020, but the new regulation reinforces it.
Bullying and Sexual Harassment
The new legislation delivers security for staff against bullying and sexual harassment in the office. Especially, Write-up 14 prohibits “[s]exual harassment, bullying or any verbal, bodily or psychological violence” to an staff.
Inside Operate Guidelines (Handbook)
Short article 13 of the new legislation sets forth a range of employer obligations, like the necessity that businesses execute inner function rules. Further than that, no further aspects are supplied. Therefore, it is anticipated that the forthcoming government polices will set out the framework and deliver added specifics on this requirement.
Retention of Employment Documents
Less than the new law, all employment records must be kept for at the very least two yrs after termination of employment.
The UAE’s new labor legislation delivers about considerable improvements for impacted employers. Employers might want to take into consideration creating methods to apply these new improvements during the following 12 months.
© 2022, Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C., All Rights Reserved.Countrywide Legislation Assessment, Quantity XII, Selection 40