End-of-service benefit claims
Question: Five years ago, one of my employees had tendered his resignation. Accordingly, the company had settled all his terminal dues in full. However, after a month, he returned to work and signed a new contract with the company. A month ago, he again resigned and demanded his end-of-service benefits from the beginning of his previous employment contract. How can I prove that I had settled all his dues in full?
Answer: As a general principal, the plaintiff has to prove his rights and the defendant has to disprove it, according to Article 1 of the law on evidence in civil and commercial transactions. End-of-service benefits payment proof is not like any other right of the worker. Proof of such payment should be done in three ways only — in writing or through an acknowledgement or through an oath.
‘It is decided in cassation No 126/2018 of Labour by Dubai Supreme Court that it is not permissible to prove the payment of end-of-service indemnity in the same way as all other rights of the worker, except in writing, through acknowledgment or on oath’.
If the employee neither admitted that he had received his dues nor was there a written document signed by him regarding receipt of his dues, then you must prove that the previous employment contract had exhausted five years ago and was not continued, and that a new employment relationship had been established and that the employee had already received his dues related to that period.
In order to do this, you may find out in the related departments if his first visa was cancelled and get hold of such document. You may also follow up on the payment method that was used at that time in respect of settlement of his dues — whether by cheque or bank transfer. You may also request the employee to say on oath, in front of the court, or furnish any conversation as proof — whether on email or on WhatsApp or any document — related to the matter.
Your proofs should be submitted to the court, which has the full authority to examine the evidence and documents presented in the lawsuit and decide on the case accordingly.
Sub-letting of property
Question: Four months ago, I rented my villa to a person and according to the lease contract, the tenant was not entitled to rent the villa to others. However, it has now become clear to me that the tenant is outside the UAE and the sub-tenant is using the villa. My question is, do I legally have the right to file a rental lawsuit against the subtenant and seek eviction, even though the lease contract is still valid and expires only after six months and that it was signed by the first tenant?
Answer: You have the right to file a case at the Rental Dispute Centre to seek eviction of the original tenant who had signed the tenancy contract with you and in this case, the eviction will apply to the subtenant.
This is because according to Article (24) of Law No (26) of 2007, Regulating the Relationship between Landlords and Tenants in the Emirate of Dubai, the tenant doesn’t have the right to sub-let the property without your written consent. The mentioned article states that ‘Unless otherwise agreed by the parties to the Lease Contract, the tenant may not assign the use of or sub-lease the Real Property to third parties unless written consent of the Landlord is obtained’.
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Article (25) of the same law superseded by Law No (33) of 2008 dated 01/12/2008 gives the landlord the right to evict the tenant from the property before the expiry of its term if the latter sub-lets the tenancy without his approval and knowledge. This article states that ‘The landlord may seek eviction of the Tenant from the property before the expiry of the lease contract term in any of the following cases:
Where the tenant sub-lets the property or any part thereof without obtaining the landlord’s written approval. In this case, the eviction will apply to the sub-tenant, who will have the right to claim compensation from the tenant.
It is decided in Cassation No 2017/98 and No 2017/99 Civil Appeal by Dubai Supreme Court that ‘The text in Article 24 of Law No 26 of 2007 regulating the relationship between landlords and tenants in the emirate of Dubai indicates that the agreement to waive the use of the property or sub-letting must be included in the lease contract. If the contract does not include such matter, then the tenant may not assign the use of or sub-lease the property to third parties without the landlord’s approval and the legislator stipulates that the approval should be in writing. Therefore, if the tenant does not provide this written approval issued by the landlord, his waiver of the use of the property or sub-letting it is considered impermissible and the landlord may request that he vacate the property in accordance with the provisions of Article 25 (b) from the aforementioned law, as amended by Law 26 of 2007'.