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Dubai: From calculating your gratuity to the way labour contracts are drafted, a new law will soon govern all aspects of work relations within the private sector in the UAE. Federal Decree-Law No. 33 of 2021 on the Regulation of Labour Relations will come into effect on February 2, 2022, replacing the current Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 and its amendments.

The new law lays down essential regulations that ensure the rights of both the employer and employee are guaranteed. Article 6 of the law, pertaining to the recruitment and employment of workers, stipulates that no worker may be employed without obtaining the work permit from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE). Also, employers have been expressly prohibited from collecting the cost of recruitment and employment from the workers, whether directly or indirectly, in Clause 4 of the Article.

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Here is a detailed look at what the article states:


1. No work may be performed in the UAE, and no worker may be recruited or employed by any employer without obtaining the Work Permit from the Ministry, in accordance with the provisions of this Decree-Law and its Executive Regulations.

2. The Executive Regulations of this Decree-Law shall determine the conditions, controls, types of Work Permits and the procedures for the grant, renewal and cancellation thereof.

3. It shall be prohibited to practice recruitment activity or mediate in recruiting or employing workers without licence by the Ministry, in accordance with the conditions and procedures specified by the Executive Regulations of this Decree Law.

4. An Employer shall not charge the worker or collect from him recruitment and employment costs, either directly or indirectly.

5. The Minister shall, after coordination with the concerned entities in the UAE, issue the decisions regulating Works in respect of which it is prohibited to recruit and employ Workers, and the requirements thereof.