Question: Our company never pays annual leave salary. The argument of the company is that annual salary is paid only when an employee relinquishes annual leave. Please advise on the entitlements.
Answer: According to Article 79 of the Labour Law, a worker who has completed one continuous year in the service of the employer shall be entitled to an annual leave with pay. The wage of the worker during the annual leave shall be calculated on the basis of his basic wage on the date of entitlement. Before commencement of the annual leave, the employer shall pay to the employee the wages to which the worker is entitled for the work he has performed and the leave salaries to which the worker is entitled. This leave shall not be less than three weeks for the worker whose service is less than five years and four weeks for the worker whose service is more than five years.
Q: Our company has leased a property for commercial use. The lease contract is valid for 10 years. But now the company is not utilising the property. We have discussed with the landlord for early termination and he is not willing for early termination. Can we get the contract terminated through courts in any case? Or can we sub-lease the property to some other party, even if the landlord did not give permission for sublease, on the ground of non-utilisation and refusal to terminate? Can we get any permission from court for sub-leasing rights? Please advise.
A:The termination of the lease contract is possible only according to the provisions of the contract or through mutual consent of the parties. However, according to Article 632 of the civil law, in the event of any unforeseen circumstances arising in connection with either party which makes the continuation of the lease unduly burdensome to such party, the court may, on demand by such party and upon a comparison of the interests of both parties, terminate the lease and fairly compensate the other party.
The sub-leasing rights are granted to the tenant by the landlord according to his discretion. The court does not have any legal right to grant permission for sub-leasing.
Unauthorised use of trademark
Q:Can we file a police complaint for use of trademark without permission? We have a registered mark in our company and I came to know that a similar name is used by another firm for canvassing business. What is the provision in law and what will be punishment for such unauthorised use under criminal law? Please advise.
A: According to Article 388 of the Qatar Penal Laws, without prejudice to any more severe penalty stipulated herein or under any other law, any person who breaches a third party’s ownership of intellectual property and rights as protected by the law or an international agreement to which the State of Qatar is a signatory, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years and/or a fine not exceeding QR20,000. All the materials produced in breach of any of these rights shall be confiscated.
Protection of business secrets
Q:I have some difference of opinion with my agent and I have cancelled the contract with him. But he is aware of my business secrets and his disclosing the same to a third person may affect my business. Is there any provision in the Qatar law that protect my rights? Please advise.
A: Any lawyer, agent or medical practitioner or any other person who became aware of a fact or information through their profession or in their capacity as such shall not be permitted to disclose the facts or information, even after the end of their service or lapse of capacity, unless non-disclosure of the said information is intended to cause the commission of a crime or misdemeanour. However, the said persons should testify pertaining to these information and facts at the request of the custodian of such information or facts, provided that it shall not breach the provisions of laws applicable to them (Article 265 of the Civil and Commercial procedure law).
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