New UAE labour contracts required from 2016

‘Unified’ contracts ease process for those wanting to switch jobs – MoL

PHOTO: The UAE labour contract requirements come into force in the New Year. Credit: Shutterstock

Employers in the UAE will be required to use new labour contracts from the New Year, as part of a move the government says will ensure workers’ “freewill” in where they work.

The Ministry of Labour on Tuesday said it will not be issuing new work permits to overseas workers, nor renewing current residents’ permits, where the employer fails to provide a signed unified contract.

The new contract requirements come into force at the beginning of 2016, state news agency WAM reported.

“The new measures implement three new decrees issued by Saqr bin Ghobash Saeed Ghobash, Minister of Labour, recently with regards to regulating the labour market, starting by unifying a contracts model approved by the ministry for all labour relations,” said Humaid bin Deemas Al Suwaidi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Labour Affairs.

The new measures maintain “rights of both sides” in employment, WAM reported.

Bin Deemas said that a worker’s signature will be required when renewing a contract, something that ensures their freewill in deciding whether to continue their employment, end the relationship, find another job or move back home.

Bin Deemas believes this “establishes a healthy working relationship that ends misunderstanding between both parties”, according to WAM.

New arrivals must be given the chance to sign the contract within two weeks of entering the UAE, he added.

“Employers face a 14-day deadline to complete signature procedures following the workers entry into the UAE, if the worker complains of any delays then the ministry allows him to seek a new offer,” bin Deemas said.


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