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Holding Back Worker’s End-of-service Gratuities is Illegal in the UAE

UAE : 04 March 2011

Fatwa states that any agreement where end-of-service entitlements are held back is illegal.

A new ruling by Fatwa, the UAE’s leading Islamic authority, states that UAE workers must be given their end-of-service benefits even when those entitlements are not clearly spelled out the employment contract. The deprivation of these benefits is now considered illegal.

Established within the Justice Ministry, the Fatwa and Legislation Department issued this ruling is response to a query as to whether workers who were appointed wages considered to be all-inclusive could also claim gratuities at the close of their service, even when such an arrangement was not clearly laid out in the contract.

Fatwa’s response as noted in ‘Al Ittihad,’ a daily Arabic media, stated that benefits released at the end of service were a worker’s right and should not be “tampered with.” Fatwa added that an agreement set out to deny these benefits of the workers would be considered illegal, null and void.

It was also stated that expat civil servants who are paid through the state budget are under the number 11 law from 2008, which governs human resources within the federal government.

Fatwa’s comments noted that this law would be “enforced to the letter,” which includes the area addressing the worker’s right to end-of-service entitlements.

Under the current law, those civil servants are to be paid the equivalent of one month’s basic wages for every year of the initial five years of service, as well as one and a half months for each year of service from six to ten and finally two months for each year worked beyond the tenth.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News
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