Topic: Middle East

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An emoji too far for the UAE?

The release of a controversial “middle finger” emoji character could spell legal trouble for users in the United Arab Emirates. It has been reported that Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system will be the first major software release to include the emoji officially known as “Reversed Hand With Middle Finger Extended.” Emoji are the standardised set … Continue reading

Vicarious liability of employers under UAE and DIFC law

This article was written by senior associate Helen Perrin and trainee solicitor Freya Byrne. Article 313.1.b of the UAE Civil Code (Civil Code) legislates that a person may be vicariously liable for the acts and omissions of their employees. The Civil Code provides that in order for vicarious liability to arise, three requirements must be … Continue reading

Collective Bargaining Rights of Employees in the UAE

This article was written by partner Jane Clayton and trainee solicitor Emily Colville. The hosting of the 2022 football World Cup in Qatarhas led to considerable media and political attention on the rights of employees in that country and the surrounding region [Qatar’s World Cup ‘slaves’]. Here we focus on the position in one neighbouring … Continue reading

Republic of Lebanon liable for damages following a general protections (adverse action) claim by an Australian based consular employee

Republic of Lebanon liable for damages following a general protections (adverse action) claim by an Australian based consular employee. The Republic of Lebanon has been ordered to pay a former Australian consular employee in excess of $330,000 in damages for future economic loss suffered by the former employee as a result of breaches of Australian … Continue reading

The Breakup: What you need to know when terminating the employment of an Emirati employee

This article was written by partner Vandana Rupani and senior associate Hani Ghattas of Fulbright & Jaworski LLP. A UAE employer hiring Emirati employees in the private sector should be aware that if the employment relationship with an Emirati employee does not progress as expected, it cannot simply terminate the employment of an Emirati employee … Continue reading

Employees’ rights in bankruptcy in the UAE

This article was written by John Lee, Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP. Employees’ rights in bankruptcy in the UAE On the face of it, employees’ rights in the UAE seem to be well protected by the bankruptcy laws. Under Article 713(1) of Federal Law No. 18 of 1993 (Commercial Transactions Law), the wages and … Continue reading

UAE Free Zones: Are you better off being employed in one?

This article was written by Ali Kamal, paralegal at Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP   The labour regulations which govern the relationship between employer and employee in the UAE free zones vary between each free zone. They must, however, offer the minimum statutory employment rights and obligations that apply to employees working onshore in the … Continue reading

Restrictive covenants in the UAE

This article was written by Partner Patrick Bourke and Trainee Solicitor Mollie Tregillis. Clients regularly ask questions regarding the position of post-termination restrictive covenants under UAE Law. UAE Law Post-termination restrictive covenants are permitted under UAE law and are generally binding subject to certain qualifications. The effect of Article 127 of Federal Law No 8 … Continue reading

Saudiization’s Other Side – the Labor Crackdowns

This article was written by Sr. Counsel Richard Tyner and Associate Paul Lockyer. Further to our recent article on Nitaqat, there is another aspect to Saudiization, namely to ensure that a company’s employees have valid Iqamas that comply with the laws relating to sponsorship. This is the “enforcement” side of Saudiization, which seeks to create employment … Continue reading

Wage Protection System – United Arab Emirates

In line with the labour markets of other GCC states (Wage Protection System – Saudi Arabia) the UAE Ministry of Labour (Ministry) has introduced an electronic transfer system called the Wage Protection System (WPS).  The WPS was principally introduced in an effort to protect manual labourers and lower income earners in the UAE by ensuring, … Continue reading

Redundancy in the UAE: the federal law and how much will it cost?

The federal law In these times of economic uncertainty, employers are always considering implementing cost cutting including reducing their payroll costs. In the UAE, the Federal UAE Labour Law n°8 of 1980 (UAE Labour Law) does not make express reference to the concept of redundancy. Consequently, instigating a redundancy process involves following the provisions that … Continue reading

Transfers of employees in the UAE as part of an acquisition

This article was written by Jeremy Pooley, Of Counsel at Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP. The parties to a share or business acquisition need to be alert to the types of employee-related issues that can arise, and structure the acquisition accordingly. Share acquisitions An employment contract will remain in force following a share acquisition … Continue reading

Wage Protection System – Saudi Arabia

The Wage Protection System (WPS) in Saudi Arabia became mandatory for all Saudi companies with over 3,000 employees on 1 September 2013 (Ministry starts the mandatory application of “Wage Protection Program” by the end of Shawwal). The objective of the WPS is to minimise any delay and issues in the payment of salaries. Under the … Continue reading

Employee share options and incentive schemes in the UAE: the law explained

Business owners with operations in the UAE often consider the possibility of expanding international employee incentive schemes (Incentive Schemes) to its UAE resident employees.  Typically the biggest concern the employer has is whether local legislation and regulations will permit the offering and ultimate participation in an Incentive Scheme (regardless of how it is structured).  An … Continue reading

Unfair dismissal in the UAE

This article was written by Ola Al-Kadi, associate at Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP Unlike countries in Europe, where termination of the employment relationship can be more complex, in particular, for longer serving employees, an employer in the UAE is able to terminate an employee’s employment relatively easily by giving the agreed amount of … Continue reading

End of Service Gratuity in the UAE explained

This article was written by Akshay Dosaj, Senior Associate at Norton Rose Fulbright. Entitlements under the Labour Law A key consideration relevant to foreign investors in the UAE is the scope of rights available to all employees upon the termination of their employment contracts. Under UAE Labour Law, every employee has a right to: a … Continue reading

Employment contracts in the UAE: why do some foreign workers have two contracts?

Expatriate workers arriving in the UAE are often surprised to learn that, despite their hard won negotiations in getting the perfect expatriate package and employment contract agreed with their new employer, they will be required to sign a short standard form employment contract (in English and Arabic) governed by the UAE Labour Law with the … Continue reading

Labour law implications of outsourcing in the United Arab Emirates

This article was written by partner Dino Wilkinson and legal consultant Salma Peacock. Outsourcing is a practice used by organisations to reduce costs by transferring portions of work or business functions to third party providers rather than providing the service in-house. This transfer of portions of work or internal business functions to external suppliers has … Continue reading

Expat visas in the UAE: will I be banned if I take a new job?

This article was written by Ali Kamal, Paralegal at Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP Except for UAE nationals (and, in general, GCC nationals) all UAE residents need permission from the UAE Ministry of Labour (MOL) to work, and, from the UAE Immigration Department to live in the UAE. Each Emirate in the UAE has … Continue reading

Common theme for July: wrongful dismissal

We are delighted to announce that in the next few days, our bloggers from many regions will discuss how wrongful dismissal is dealt with in their respective jurisdiction! Our bloggers will address the remedies available for employees wrongfully dismissed as well as the main criteria courts and tribunals use to adjudicate these complaints. We hope … Continue reading

Labour pains: sponsorship of migrant workers in the Gulf

This article was written by Léonie Hamway, Norton Rose Fulbright. Many countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have a huge population of migrant workers making up a significant proportion of the workforce. For example, in Qatar, 300,000 citizens rely on 1.3 million migrants for their labour needs (Qatar’s migrant worker problem now includes pro … Continue reading

Bahrain’s New Labour Law: What’s in a day?

This post was contributed by Heros Leask, Associate at Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP. On September 2nd 2012, the Kingdomof Bahrain’s Legislative Decree Law No. 36 of 2012 (the New Law) took effect, replacing Decree No. 23 of 1976, the Labour Law for the Private Sector. The New Law was approved by the Bahraini … Continue reading
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