I had worked in a company for more than two years for a salary and commission. A month ago, I resigned and upon calculating my dues for the end-of-service gratuity, the said amount was calculated as per the law and I accepted the amount decided by the company. I did not accept the amount of commission as the actual amount of commission is much more than the offered amount. Hence, I lodged a complaint with the Ministry of Labour claiming my rights for the end-of-service gratuity in full plus the commission. I was told by ministry officials that I might take the amount of end-of-service gratuity since the employer was ready to submit the cheque, but with respect to the commission, I might go to the court to claim the same. The ministry provided me with another opportunity to accept the settlement especially as I needed some money to facilitate my family matters. My question here is: can I accept the gratuity amount and then approach the court to claim the commission — that is, whether there will be any effect on the commission claim at the competent court? Secondly, I did not take my annual leave for two years. How do I calculate my annual leave pay — will it be as per my full salary or basic salary? In addition, am I entitled to two years’ annual leave pay or one year’s only?

I would like to tell the questioner that he may take the gratuity amount as suggested by the Ministry of Labour, provided that he sign a letter saying that he has received the end-of-service gratuity only and that no agreement has been made on the commission due as it will be considered before the competent court. Finally, the employee, as per the UAE Labour Law, is entitled to two years’ pending annual leave and the annual leave salary will be calculated as per the basic salary plus accommodation allowance.

Travel ban

I had been working for a company for three years. The company suddenly terminated my service and wanted me to go back to my home country. I had certain financial issues to resolve and had a travel ban against me. Though I requested the company to give me some time to find a job and change my sponsorship because of my problems, the company refused. During my notice period, the company told me verbally not to work and then it reported me as absconding. This was to avoid paying me my end-of-service gratuity and compensation for the unfair termination. It also wanted to prevent me from working with a competitor company. This was in August 2017. Since then, I have been staying illegally in Dubai due to my travel ban and financial issues. I am supposed to pay some credit card payments and I am sure the banks have legal cases against me. I would like to have your expert advice on how to legalise my status. I am ready to pay my bank liabilities and clear myself from all police cases in this regard. I am also ready to pay any penalty for overstaying in the country. One company is willing to give me an employment visa. Is it possible to change my status without exiting from the country? What are the legal and financial implications in my case? Will there be any ban on me due to the unfair absconder complaint lodged against me by the employer? Can the ban be lifted? My employer is willing to withdraw the absconder complaint in case I don’t ask for my end-of-service gratuity, the unpaid salary for two months and the salary for the notice period.

Normally, the Ministry of Labour will not accept the withdrawal of the absconder complaint by the employer. Therefore, I advise the questioner to file a complaint with the ministry against the employer demanding his rights. He must insist that the ministry refer the case to the labour court if he could prove with sufficient pieces of evidence that the employer had reported him as absconding maliciously to avoid paying him his pending salary and end-of-service dues. If the labour court passes a judgement in favour of the questioner, he may present the judgement copy to the Ministry of Labour. Accordingly, the ministry will cancel the absconder complaint and allow the questioner to transfer his employment visa to a new company without having to leave the UAE.

Questions are answered by lawyer Mohammad Ebrahim Al Shaiba of Al Shaiba Advocate and Legal Consultants