A reader from Dubai asks: I joined a company in Bur Dubai last year on an unlimited labour contract with a notice period of 30 days. However, my appointment letter says I have a limited contract for three years, with one month's notice and three months' deducted salary in case I leave before three years. Now I have got a job with a semi-government company and its human resources department have told me they do not require a no-objection certificate. Please clarify, is this right? My company is asking for three months' salary as compensation. Can I deny it as I submitted my resignation in my probationary period? If not should I pay the basic salary or the whole salary? Can my present company put an immigration ban on me?
The employment contract, which the questioner has signed with the employer, defines the nature of the relationship between the questioner and the employer, as the said contract supersedes the employment letter, which has already been offered to the questioner. Therefore, the questioner's contract is considered unlimited, and such a contract will be effective before the Ministry of Labour, not the employment letter. Thus, the questioner at this rate is not obliged to compensate the employer, as compensation is specified only in the limited contract in the event of violation. However, upon cancellation, the Ministry of Labour will automatically impose a ban, and the questioner may work for the company as it is considered semi-governmental and has its own system in this regard.
Questions answered by Advocate Mohammad Ebrahim Al Shaiba of Al Bahar Advocates and Legal Consultants.
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