Questioner from Dubai asks: I worked in a company for more than four years. In January 2018, my services were terminated without any reason. The company agreed to give me all my dues and additional compensation for termination and they gave me a two-month post dated cheque, I signed a document before the Ministry of Labour that I have received all my dues. The company manager told me that cancellation process will be done soon thereafter and after that I will be able join a new company. The cheque given to me by the company has bounced as the company bank account is closed. As per the UAE law, do I have the right to approach the Ministry of Labour to claim for my dues and to inform them that the cheque given to me by my previous employer has bounced.Do I have the right to file a direct case against my former company in the labour court. I have my family with me under my sponsorship; Do I have to cancel their visa until I get my new employment visa.

Answer: The questioner cannot file a case with the Ministry of Labour on the basis of the bounced cheque as he had already signed a document before them that he has received all his dues. In this case, the questioner can file a criminal complaint against the cheque issuer or file a civil case against the company before the criminal court. As for the question on his family’s visa, upon the cancellation of his current visa, he should apply to the Department of Naturalisation and Residence and request them to put cancellation of his family visa on hold until he gets his new employment visa. After getting the new employment visa he can adjust the status of his family’s visa

Postponed Leave

I have been working with a company for more than two years. I applied for my annual leave for this year, but the company asked me to postpone it for a year for work exigencies. I agreed to the same but as per my company rules I am entitled to only basic salary during leave without any allowances. My question is: Whether the annual leave allowance includes the basic salary. In case the company fails to compensate me for this annual leave, what dues I can claim. As per the UAE labour law, does my employer has the right to reject my annual leave next year again? Does the employer has the right to delay or allow the employee to take only part of his annual leave?

Answer: I would like to clarify to the questioner that the Article 78 of the UAE’s 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 where the circumstances of the work make it necessary for a worker to work during all or part of his annual leave and 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 ask a worker to forego his annual leave more than once in two successive years.”

As per above mentioned article, the employer, due to the work exigencies, has the right to ask his employee to work during annual leave or ask him to avail part of his annual leave.

Ask the Law questions are answered by lawyer Mohammad Ebarhim Al Shaiba of Al Shaiba Advocates and Legal Consultants.