GCC Laws
Employment Contracts, Records and Wages

Employment Contracts, Records and Wages

Article 35 - Employment Contract Documentation

Q. What does Article 35 of the UAE Labor Law stipulate?

Article 35 mandates that an employment contract must be documented in two copies, with one given to the worker and the other retained by the employer. In cases where a written contract is absent, the terms of the contract can be proven through various acceptable methods of evidence.

Q. Why is this article significant?

This article ensures transparency and clarity in employment agreements, requiring both parties to possess a copy of the contract. If a written contract is not available, it permits other forms of evidence to establish the terms agreed upon.

Article 36 - Components of an Employment Contract

Q. What details should an employment contract include?

An employment contract should specify the date of its creation, the commencement date of work, the nature and location of the work, the contract's duration (if fixed), and the wage amount.

Q. What's the relevance of this article?

Article 36 establishes the necessary components of an employment contract, ensuring that both the employer and the worker are on the same page regarding essential terms.

Article 37 - Probationary Period

Q. Can a worker be employed on probation?

Article 37 allows a worker to be employed on probation for a maximum of six months. During this period, the employer can terminate the worker's services without notice or severance pay. Importantly, a worker can only undergo probation once with the same employer. If a worker successfully completes probation and continues employment, the probation time is counted as part of their total service duration.

Article 38 - Employment Contract Durations

Q. What are the terms for employment contract durations?

An employment contract can be either for a definite or an indefinite term. If it's for a definite term, it shouldn't surpass four years. However, it can be renewed through mutual agreement for an equal or shorter duration. The renewal is considered an extension of the original term, contributing to the worker's total service time.

Article 39 - Indefinite Employment Contracts

Q. When is an employment contract considered indefinite?

An employment contract is deemed indefinite if: It's not written. It's established for an unspecified period. Originally written for a definite term, both parties continue to perform it without a written agreement after its expiry. Initially created for a specific task without a set duration or a recurrent task, and the contract continues after completing that task.

Article 40 - Extension of Employment Contracts

Q. What happens if a contract continues beyond its initial term?

If both parties continue performing the contract after its initial term or completing the agreed work, and no explicit agreement exists, the contract is extended under the same conditions, except for the term.

Article 41 - Subcontracting Work

Q. What if an employer subcontracts work to a third party?

If an employer subcontracts any principal operations or part thereof to a third party, the third party is solely responsible for fulfilling the entitlements of the employees engaged in that subcontracted work, following the regulations of this Law.

Article 42 - Apprenticeship Contracts

Q. What does Article 42 of the UAE Labor Law define?

Article 42 outlines the concept of an apprenticeship contract. This type of contract involves an employer agreeing to provide comprehensive vocational training that aligns with professional standards to an individual who is at least 12 years old. In return, the trainee agrees to work for the employer during the training period, adhering to mutually agreed terms and duration.

Q. What's the significance of a written contract?

For an apprenticeship contract to be valid, it must be documented in writing. This requirement ensures clarity and legality in the agreement. Both the employer and the trainee must possess endorsed copies.

Q. What qualifications are necessary?

The employer or the training provider must possess sufficient qualifications and experience relevant to the profession or trade. Additionally, the firm must have the necessary technical facilities and requirements to effectively deliver the training.

Article 43 - Eligibility for Training Contracts

Q. Who can enter into a training contract?

Individuals who have reached the age of maturity can personally conclude a training contract. However, those under 18 years of age cannot directly establish such a contract with an employer. Instead, they need to be represented by their natural guardians, legal trustees, or personal ad litem.

Article 44 - Registration of Training Contracts

Q. How is a training contract registered?

A training contract must be drawn up in at least three copies. One copy needs to be deposited with the relevant labor department for registration and endorsement. Each party should retain an endorsed copy. If the submitted contract violates the law or its regulations, the labor department may request the parties to amend such clauses. If no objections are raised by the labor department within a month, the contract is considered endorsed from the date of deposit.

Article 45 - Details in a Training Contract

Q. What details should a training contract contain?

A training contract should include the identities of the involved parties or their representatives. It must also outline the procedures, duration, phases, and focus of the training.

Article 46 - Employer's Obligations During Training

Q. What obligations does the employer have during training?

The employer must allocate sufficient time for the trainee to acquire theoretical knowledge. Throughout the contract period, the employer should provide practical training in the occupation's principles and skills. The employer is required to issue certificates upon completing each training phase and a final certificate upon the entire training's conclusion. These certificates can be endorsed by the labor department.

Article 47 - Commitment to Work After Training

Q. Can a worker commit to working after training?

A worker can undertake, as part of the training contract, to work for the employer or the establishment where the training took place for a period not exceeding twice the training duration. Conversely, the employer can commit to employing the trainee after the training period ends.

Article 48 - Wage Determination During Training

Q. How is the wage determined during training?

A training contract should specify the wage for each training phase. The wage for the final phase should not fall below the minimum set for the same work and should never be based on a piecework or output basis.

Article 49 - Medical Test for Minors

Q. What's required before starting training for those under 18 years old?

Individuals under 18 years old must undergo a medical test before training to determine their suitability for the involved profession's physical demands. If the profession requires specific physical and health criteria, the medical report should indicate if the trainee meets these requirements, both physically and psychologically.

Article 50 - Ministerial Authority for Training

Q. What authority does the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs have regarding training?

The Minister of Labour and Social Affairs can issue resolutions to regulate training for professions and trades that necessitate training. These resolutions establish the training period, theoretical and practical programs, examination conditions, and certification upon training completion. Such resolutions are formulated in consultation with relevant institutions and may involve experts in the respective field.

Article 51 - Vocational Training Centers

Q. Can vocational training centers be established?

The Minister of Labour and Social Affairs can issue resolutions for establishing vocational training centers. These centers can be independent or associated with professional, non-profit national, foreign, or international organizations. The resolution should detail the training profession, admission conditions, theoretical and practical study programs, examination and certification rules, and other operational provisions for the center.

Article 52 - Trainee Placement

Q. What authority does the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs have over trainee placement?

The Minister of Labour and Social Affairs can require specific firms, companies, and owners of industrial, professional, and craft units to hire a certain number or percentage of national trainees. These placements are subject to specified terms and conditions. The Minister can also stipulate that certain firms, companies, and unit owners offer training and practical experience to students of industrial and polytechnic institutes, under mutually agreed terms and periods.

Article 53 - Employer Record-keeping Obligations

Q. What is Article 53 of the UAE Labor Law about?

Article 53 pertains to record-keeping obligations of employers who employ five or more workers. These employers are required to: Maintain a separate file for each worker, containing details such as name, job, age, nationality, address, marital status, employment date, wage and its adjustments, imposed penalties, work-related injuries, diseases, and reasons for termination. Create a leave card for each worker, divided into sections for annual, sick, and other leaves. The employer must record all leaves taken by the worker for future reference.

Article 54 - Records for Larger Employers

Q. What records must larger employers maintain?

Employers with 15 or more workers are obligated to keep specific records and documents at each workplace or branch. These include: A wage register listing worker names and their corresponding daily, weekly, or monthly wages, fringe benefits, piecemeal or commission pay, work days, and termination date. An occupational injuries register recording all work-related injuries and occupational diseases as soon as they are known. Basic work rules detailing daily work hours, weekly rest, holidays, and safety measures. These rules must be displayed at the workplace and endorsed by the Labour Department. Disciplinary rules showing actions for defaulting workers. Similar to basic work rules, these must also be displayed and endorsed by the Labour Department.

Article 55 - Payment of Wages

Q. How should wages be paid?

Wages must be paid in legal tender on a working day, at the workplace, and using the official national currency.

Article 56 - Frequency of Wage Payments

Q. How often should wages be paid?

Workers on yearly or monthly wages must be paid at least once a month. Other workers must be paid at least once every two weeks.

Article 57 - Daily Wage Calculation for Piecemeal Workers

Q. How is the daily wage calculated for piecemeal workers?

The daily wage of piecemeal workers is determined based on the average wage earned for actual work days during the six months before their service termination.

Article 58 - Evidence of Wage Payment

Q. What's acceptable evidence of wage payment?

Proof of wage payment to workers, regardless of amount or nature, is only admissible in the form of documentary proof, admission, or oath. Any agreement contrary to this is invalid, even if made before the implementation of this Law.

Article 59 - Restriction on Purchases

Q. Can workers be obligated to purchase from specific shops or the employer's products?

Employers cannot force workers to buy commodities from a particular shop or purchase the employer's goods.

Article 60 - Wage Deductions for Private Claims

Q. When can wage deductions occur for private claims?

Deductions from a worker's wage for private claims are generally prohibited. Exceptions include: Repayment of loans or advances exceeding entitlements (not exceeding 10% of wage). Mandatory contributions to social security and insurance schemes. Contributions to a provident fund or loan repayment. Contributions towards welfare schemes or approved privileges. Fines imposed on the worker. Court-ordered debt repayment (not exceeding 25% of wage).

Article 61 - Wage Deductions for Loss or Damage

Q. When can wage deductions be made for loss or damage?

If a worker causes loss, damage, or destruction to tools, machines, products, or materials owned or supervised by the employer, deductions can be made from the worker's wage for repair or restoration. However, this deduction should not exceed five days' wage per month. Higher deductions require permission from the competent court.

Article 62 - Payment Category Changes

Q. Can an employer change a worker's payment category without consent?

Employers cannot shift a monthly-paid worker to a daily, weekly, hourly, or piecemeal payment category without the worker's written consent.

Article 63 - Minimum Wage Determination

Q. How is the minimum wage determined?

The federal decree determines the minimum wage and cost-of-living index for workers. The Minister of Labour and Social Affairs proposes the minimum wage, consulting relevant authorities, labor organizations, and considering cost-of-living fluctuations.

Article 64 - Effective Date of Minimum Wage Rates

Q. When do minimum wage rates take effect?

Minimum wage rates and amendments become effective from the date the decree announcing them is published in the official Gazette.

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