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The issues related to labor law are rather common for the UAE for a number of reasons. First of all, work-related problems may arise in the case of conflicts of interest (for instance, if relatives are employed within the same department). The tensions that arise between the workers may be connected to some factors, and numerous companies nowadays are hardly hiring a team of individuals whose interpersonal relations are not affected by their personal relations. The problem with hiring relatives is rather common for the UAE, and it has its upsides and downsides. The Article 58 of the UAE Labor Law claims that employment of relatives is a rather arguable decision due to the fact that one of those relatives will commonly have the possibility to leave or to be promoted on the basis of the outcomes of the conflict (United Arab Emirates Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratization, 2016).
An Indian employee of Alpha Paint in Dubai was fired due to his inappropriate conduct in social networks (Ali & Saseendran, 2017). The ex-pat identified as B.B. in the social networks sent abusive messages to an Indian journalist based in Delhi. The journalist exposed the posts trying to draw the public attention to the issue. Social network users were shocked and condemned the abuser. When Alpha Paint’s management learned about the incident, B.B. was sacked with the corresponding compensation.
The termination of the employment was carried out in accordance with the UAE Labor Law. First, the company provided the corresponding compensation under Article 115 (Title Seven) of Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 (here also referred to as the Law) (United Arab Emirates Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratization, 2016). The termination of the employment is carried out under Article 113 of the Law.
It is also necessary to note that the company could sack the employee under Article 120 that stipulates that the employee can be fired if they make an error associated with considerable losses and the employee can be sacked if they are convicted of a crime of public ethics by the competent court. In the former cases, the losses were reputational, but they could become financial losses soon. Although the case was not brought to the court, the abuser is likely to be convicted as the Emirati laws concerning female abuse are quite strict. This conviction could be a premise for firing the employee without any compensation. This case shows that Emirati companies can react in case their employees display unethical behavior. The Law also safeguards the rights of the employee who receives proper compensation.
The other case is related to the workers’ compensation and overtime work. An employee has to work from 8 am to 7 pm (11 hours a day) on a regular basis (Bobker, 2016). At that, the employee does not receive any compensation even though the issue was brought to the company’s management. The management responded that such working hours are accepted according to the existing laws. The employee plans to send a complaint to the corresponding authorities.
According to Article 65 (Title Four) of Federal Law No. 8 of 1980, office employees should work eight hours a day or 40 hours a week (United Arab Emirates Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratization, 2016). Some exceptions include those employed in such spheres as trade, hospitality industry, security, and some other areas. In these spheres working hours can be extended to nine hours. In any case, the employer has to compensate for the extra work accordingly. The employer should pay for all the hours worked. Moreover, extra hours are paid with 25% extra pay. Importantly, according to Article 69 of the Law, working hours cannot exceed two hours a day, which is the case. The company violates several articles of the law.
The employee has the right and valid ground to send a complaint to the corresponding authority. The company is likely to be assigned to pay compensation for the period of the individual’s employment. The employee will also receive the corresponding compensation for extra working hours. In case the company refuses to pay, or the employee is sacked, it is possible to bring the case to the court. The employee will win the case.
The existing UAE Labor Law guidelines provide us with information regarding the probable measures that should be taken in case of a dispute or a conflict of interests. Within the framework of the current paper, several intricate cases were reviewed concerning the application of different Articles of the UAE Labor Law. In most cases, the employees were punished according to the Labor Law, but there are cases that leave some room for discussion, and the final decision cannot be one-sided. It is interesting how the majority of the Labor Law cases are resolved in the court and not within the organizational context. Regardless of the environment, the existing Labor Law seems to be too inflexible and strict to resolve some of the disputes that may transpire within the work-based environment.
Ali, A., & Saseendran, S. (2017). Expat fired over abusive social media post against Indian journalist. Gulf News. Web.
Bobker, K. (2016). UAE Labour Law lays out compensation for overtime work. The National. Web.
United Arab Emirates Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation. (2016). Labour Law. Web.