I am a woman living in Dubai. I have been working in a company for more than two years. In December 2017, I was supposed to go for my annual leave but my company did not allow me. They told me that I could take the leave this year or they are ready to pay double the salary in case I do not take that leave. How do I calculate my leave dues as per the UAE Labour Law in case I worked and delayed my annual leave? As per the labour law, how many times the employer has the right to delay an employee’s annual leave? Can the employee get paid emergency leave in case the employee’s parent passed away? Is there any such leave in the labour law?

Article 78 of the UAE Labour Law states: “Every worker shall be entitled to his basic wage and the housing allowance if applicable in respect of his days of annual leave. If the circumstances of the work make it necessary for a worker to work during all or part of his annual leave and if the days of leave on which he works are not carried forward to the following year, the employer shall pay him his remuneration, plus a leave allowance in respect of the days worked at a rate equal to his basic wage.” It shall be unlawful in any circumstances to make an employee work during his annual leave more than once in two successive years.

Finally, as per the UAE Labour Law, there is no leave called emergency paid leave.

Salary cut

Two months ago, two of my staff members damaged a factory equipment due to their fault. What is the percentage of salary the employer could cut to recover the cost of the damaged equipment from an employee as per the UAE labour law? Is it possible to cut the amount from the end-of-service benefits in case I decide to terminate them from work? A year ago, they did a similar thing and I gave them a warning but I did not cut any amount from their salaries.

Article 61 of Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 states: “Where a worker, either through his own fault or in violation of the employer’s instruction, is guilty of the loss, damage or destruction of tools, machines or products or materials owned by the employer or in the latter’s custody, the employer may deduct from the worker’s remuneration such amount as may be necessary to repair them or to replace them as fully as possible, provided that the amount so deducted shall not exceed five days’ remuneration in each month. The employer may request the competent court through the labour department concerned for permission to deduct more than this amount if the worker has capital assets or any other source of income.” The questioner has the right to recover the cost of the damaged equipment from the employee’s end-of-service benefits in case the employee leaves work before paying the full amount for the equipment.

— Questions answered by advocate Mohammad Ebrahim Al Shaiba of Al Shaiba Advocates and Legal Consultants.