More than two weeks ago, I filed a labour complaint before the Ministry of Labour to claim my labour rights. A representative of the employer came to the arbitrator in the ministry and promised to settle the matter, but in the second sitting he did not come to the ministry as promised. The arbitrator then asked me to adjourn the sitting to the next week and I agreed. My question here is; what is the legal period for the complaint to remain in the ministry? In the event of non-attendance of the employer in the next sitting, can I reject the request of the ministry to adjourn once more? Please advise me.
Article No. (6) Amended, of the Federal Labour Law No. 8 of 1980 states the following: “Without prejudice to the provisions concerning collective labour disputes stated in this law, if the employer or the worker or any beneficiary thereof raised a claim concerning any of the rights accruing to any of them according to the provisions of this law, he shall submit a request thereof to the concerned Labour Department. This Department shall summon the two parties to the dispute and shall take whatever it deems necessary to settle the dispute amicably. If the amicable settlement is not reached, the said department must within two weeks from date of submitting request, submit the dispute
to the concerned court. The submission must be accompanied with a note including a summary of the dispute, the arguments of the two parties and the observation of the department. The court shall, within three days from date of receiving the request, fix a sitting to consider the claim and the two parties shall be notified thereof.
The court may summon a representative of the Labour Department to explain the note submitted by it. In all cases no claim of any entitlement due under the provisions of this law, shall be heard if brought to court after the lapse of one year from the date on which such entitlement become due, and no claim shall be admitted if the procedure stated in this article are not adhered to”.
Therefore, in accordance with the above article, in the event of non-attendance of the employer or no settlement has been reached in this regard, the questioner shall ask the Ministry of Labour to refer the complaint to the competent court and to reject any other adjournment in this regard.
Questions answered by Advocate Mohammad Ebrahim Al Shaiba of Al Bahar Advocates and Legal Consultants.