• UAE Labour Law


    At TWS Legal Consultants, we have been advising and representing UAE
    businesses on labour and corporate law matters for over fourteen years.

The strength and expertise of our employment law team have ensured that our clients’ critical labour law matters are swiftly addressed, and their interests robustly protected.  We can advise and draft bespoke employment contracts that meet your organisation’s needs.

Our  Legal Consultants are registered with the UK Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and the Dubai Legal Affairs Department.

What are the types of employment contracts in the UAE?

Federal Law No. 8 of 1980, also known as the Labour Law, governs all UAE employment law.  It applies to most UAE nationals and expatriate employers and employees.

The Labour Law provides for two types of employment contracts in the UAE; a limited contract, and an unlimited contract.

Limited contracts are often linked to UAE work visas and are typically for two years’ duration.  An unlimited contract has no fixed-term or specified end date.

A limited contract can be renewed at the end of the fixed term or converted to an unlimited contract.

What does an employment contract include?

The Labour Law’s main requirements regarding employment contracts are:

  • They (and other employment-related documentation and instructions) must be in Arabic. If the document is also in another language, such as English, in the event of a dispute, the Arabic text prevails.
  • They should be in writing and in duplicate, with copies retained by the worker and the employer. If there is no written contract, any evidence can be used to show that a contract of employment exists and that certain terms apply.

An employment contract will normally include the following terms:

  • whether the contract is limited or unlimited
  • if it is limited, the duration of the contract
  • the employee’s position and salary
  • the nature of the work
  • length of probationary period
  • annual leave entitlement
  • termination notice
  • any salary deductions which may apply
  • hours to be worked
  • location of employment

The terms of the contract can only be altered by mutual agreement between the employer and employee.

Who pays for an employee’s residency visa?

Under UAE labour law, it is the employer who is responsible for the costs of sponsorship and visa costs.  Employers are not permitted to ask for instalment-based deductions for visa costs from employees – this is a criminal offence.

Why choose us?

Investing in legal advice and clear, concise drafting of employment contracts can dramatically mitigate the risks of an employment dispute.  We have been advising employers in the UAE for over fourteen years; therefore, we are extremely knowledgeable about the cultural norms of the region.  Furthermore, our staff are fluent in English, so you can be confident that your employment contracts will be meticulously drafted and transcribed.

To book a consultation with one of our employment lawyers, please contact us:

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