Employees need to work a minimum of two years in a company and can transfer to another facility of the same employer
Labour Ministry has clarified the amendments it made to labour laws early this week and said the six-month ban on job transfers remains, but with certain conditions, reported Arabic language daily Al Khaleej.
Humaid bin Dimas Al Suwaidi, Assistant Undersecretary for Labour Affairs, said: "While the amendments in labour laws aim to improve employer-employee relationship and make it easier for people to switch jobs, if the agreements between the two parties are not adhered to or employees breach any of the labour laws, such as not spending a minimum two years with an employer, then they can face a six-month ban."
"There will be no ban if employees transfer to another facility of the same employer or to those companies in which the employer has a share in or is a partner" he said.
Employees will not be banned on taking up another job if the facility is shutting down or they are not paid salaries for more than 60 days. But in such cases the employee must alert the Labour Ministry and submit a report from the Inspection Department within two months, Al Suwaidi added.
Alternatively, employees can also approach the Labour Ministry in cases of unfair dismissal from work without justification; termination before the contract period ends; denial of contract renewal without a valid reason; etc. However, employees should be clear of any breach of practice.
Al Suwaidi said, as per the new amendments, all categories of workers have the right to transfer jobs, but did not specify the number of times a worker can transfer employment.
"The system of transferring sponsorship, which has been valid for more than 30 years, is abolished," he said and called on employers to speeden up renewal of labour contracts.
Meanwhile, according to a source in the ministry, establishments that fall under Category 1 is exempted from providing a bank guarantee.
The Ministry of Labour has amended the labourers' Visa Transfer Law, which, I believe, are in favour of both - the labourers and the labour market. The ministry has ceased the previous condition that obligates the labourer to complete one year continuous service for his/her employer before being permitted to transfer his/her visa to another employer.
According to the new rule, the Ministry of Labour no longer requires such a condition. So, any labourer who has not completed a year's service for his/her employer may transfer to another employer after obtaining a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the employer to transfer the visa to another employer, provided that the newly imposed fees should be settled. Such fees are called "the one year non-completion fees" which is calculated at the rate of Dh500 per month. For instance, if the employee continues a period of two months service only then he/she would be obliged to pay a fee of Dh5,000 for 10 months.
Now any labourer, who completes a period of years service and who could not obtain an NOC, can resign and can approach the Ministry of Labour and the ministry - as per his demand - will cancel the visa and apply a six-month ban. With the new rules and upon completion of three years' service, this ban can be lifted and the employee can transfer to another employer without the need to obtain such NOC from the previous employer, provided that the newly imposed fees should be settled in addition to the visa transfer fees. Such new fees are called 'ban lifting fees'. Worth saying is that this new law is not applicable in Abu Dhabi but might be in the future. Therefore, the reader as per the new law will not have any problem as long as the company has promised to grant him a n NOC to transfer his visa.
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