What to Do When Employers Do Not Pay Wages on Time in UAE?

Published September 16th, 2019 - 12:00 GMT
non-payment of salary by an employer is a violation of the Employment Law.
non-payment of salary by an employer is a violation of the Employment Law. (Shutterstock)
Highlights
Know your legal rights in the UAE.

I am currently employed in an organisation and have not received my salary for the months of June, July and August 2019 from my employer. I intend to file a complaint with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (the 'MOHRE') in order to recover my pending salaries. How can I recover the salaries due to me, without any action being taken by my employer?


Answer

Pursuant to your query, we assume that you are employed by a company based in the mainland of UAE and therefore, the provisions of Federal Law No. (8) of 1980 regulating Employment Relations in the UAE (the 'Employment Law') and Ministerial Decree No. 739 of 2016 concerning the protection of wages (the 'Ministerial Decree No. 739 of 2016') are applicable. As per the Employment Law, it may be noted that an employee shall be remunerated at least once a month. This is in accordance with Article 56 of the Employment Law which states: "Employees engaged on yearly or monthly remuneration shall be paid remuneration at least once a month; all other workers shall be paid at least once every two weeks." Therefore, non-payment of salary by an employer is a violation of the Employment Law.

If an employer does not remunerate an employee within one month of the salary becoming due, it shall be considered as a refusal of the employer to remunerate an employee. This is in accordance with Article 1(b) of Ministerial Decree No. 739 of 2016, which states, "The employer shall be deemed late in paying unless he pays the salary within the first 10 days as of maturity date, and shall be deemed as refusing to pay the salary unless he pays it within one month as of the maturity date, unless a less term is set/provided in the contract."

Further, it may be noted that an employee is allowed to leave his place of work without notice, if the employer does not fulfil his obligations towards the employee. This is in accordance with Article 121 of the Employment Law which states: "An employee may leave his work without notice in either of the following cases:

a) If the employer fails to comply with his obligations towards him, as provided for in the contract or in this law;

b) If he is assaulted by the employer or the employer's legal representative."
In view of the foregoing, you may file a complaint against your employer with the MOHRE concerning the non-payment of salary for the last three months. While complaining to MOHRE, you may inform them that you intend to continue with the current employment and your demands are only related to settlement of salaries which are not paid to you.

Know the law

The employer shall be deemed late in paying unless he pays the salary within the first 10 days as of maturity date, and shall be deemed as refusing to pay the salary unless he pays it within one month as of the maturity date.


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