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Notice Period in UAE

Notice Period in UAE: The Definitive Guide As per Labour Law (2024)

An essential requirement in labor relations is the notice period in UAE in the event of dismissal or resignation. This period is very important as it allows both parties to have enough time to adapt to the situation. Furthermore, by offering adequate time, each party complies with the laws of the nation and allows a smooth transition in each case.

In this article, we will show you everything from what this notice period is to what happens if this requirement is violated. Likewise, we will show you the exceptions for both employees and employers, in cases where notice is not necessary.

What is a notice period, and why is it important in the UAE?

Notice Period in UAE

The notice period in UAE is a set period before a worker leaves a job. In this case, the period applies whether the employee wants to leave his or her job or whether the employer wants to end the employment relationship. In both cases, the notice period serves so that both parties can prepare for the future after the breakdown of the employment relationship.

Therefore, this period is relevant to establish a fluid and seamless transition for the worker and the company. Knowing the characteristics and delimitations of said period is essential to face the potential impacts. In addition, the notice period is a legal requirement that both must comply with according to the conditions established in local labor law.

How long is the standard notice period in the UAE?

The notice period in UAE’s new labor law states that it can be between 30 and 90 days. However, commonly, the notice period is 30 days, although it may be different depending on the employment contract. Thanks to the regulations that determine this period, there is a transparent and equitable legal and work environment.

In this way, the government established the rules so that each of the parties has clear expectations of the employment relationship. The rules are included in Articles 117 and 118 of the UAE labor law.

Can an employee resign without serving the full notice period in the UAE?

The rules for the notice period in UAE are quite clear that this notice must exist. Therefore, if an employee resigns without notice and valid reasons, the employer can take legal action. Since this is a clear violation of your contract and the law, you may even receive a ban from working in the country.

Is it permissible to resign without serving a notice period in the UAE?

If you are wondering, can I resign without notice period in UAE? The answer is yes but you can only do so for the reasons established in the labor law of the country. Below you can see the valid reasons for being able to quit your job without prior notice:

  • Breach of the employment contract by the employer.
  • Failure to pay the agreed salary and within the established time.
  • Failure to provide safe working conditions.
  • The employer changes the conditions of the contract without warning and without agreeing with the employee.

What are the provisions regarding notice periods in the UAE under the new labor law?

The notice period in UAE and its characteristics are established in Articles 117 and 118 of the labor law of the nation. In the case of Article 117 concerning the aforementioned period, the regulations indicate the following terms:

  • Both the employer and the employee can terminate the indefinite-term employment contract for valid reasons. To do this, you must notify the other party in writing with an advance period of at least 30 days.
  • Day laborers must meet different deadlines depending on the period of service in the company as follows:
  1. 7 days for workers with between 6 months and less than 1 year of service.
  2. 14 days for workers with at least 1 full year of service.
  3. 30 days for workers with at least 5 years of service.

On the other hand, Article 118 establishes the characteristics of the work conditions and payments during said period. Next, you will see the conditions established by law regarding this below:

  • The employment contract between the parties will remain in force during the notice period and until the expiration of said period.
  • The employer must pay the employee his full salary based on his last wage.
  • If the employer requires it, the employee must carry out his or her regular work during the aforementioned period.
  • Employees or employers cannot reduce the established notification.
  • The employee and the employer cannot agree to the exemption of said period.
  • The law allows the notice period to be extended by agreement between the parties

Are there different notice period requirements for employees on probation in the UAE?

The notice period in UAE during probation in a company is 14 days according to the law. During the trial period, both parties determine whether the employment relationship is mutually beneficial. In this particular case, either party can terminate the contract before the established period of 2 weeks.

Furthermore, this situation is valid for both limited and unlimited employment contracts in the United Arab Emirates. However, you should pay attention to the terms and conditions of the particular company as they may differ between businesses.

What factors determine the length of the notice period in the UAE?

Several factors determine the notice period in UAE, related to the type of work, and length of service, among others. Remember that the regular period is 30 days, according to the standard specifications of local labor law. Next, we will show you the factors that determine the notice period for termination of employment:

  • The period for day laborers can be 7, 14, or 30 days determined by the length of service. In this case, they would be 6 months and less than 1 year, a full year, or more than 5 years respectively.
  • If the worker is on a trial period, this period must not exceed 14 days.

It is possible to extend the maximum notice period in UAE but only through an agreement between the employer and the employee. Furthermore, the said agreement between the parties must be in writing and each party must sign it. Nevertheless, the agreement must be within the guidelines of labor law and corresponding rules for compliance.

Can an employer terminate an employment without notice in the UAE?

An employer can terminate an employment contract of a worker without requiring a notice period in UAE. However, the valid reasons for this action are established by the labor law of the nation in Article number 121. Therefore, for an employer to dismiss an employee without providing a notice period, it must be for some of the following reasons:

  • If the employee uses a false identity or nationality to obtain the job.
  • If the employee presented false documentation to get the job.
  • Actions by the employee that harm the honor or reputation of the company.
  • For serious errors committed by the worker that cause substantial losses to the company.
  • If the employee disobeys the explicit safety rules, endangers lives or company property.
  • Failure to fulfill the duties of the employee generates substantial material losses, which the employer must report within 48 hours.
  • If the employee reveals confidential information about the company that causes substantial losses.
  • If the employee receives a final sentence to serve a sentence that damages his honor and does not allow him to do his job.

This measure helps employers protect their commercial interests and business integrity. Likewise, it allows you to maintain safety in the workplace by keeping harmful people out of the company.

What happens if an employee fails to provide proper notice before resignation in the UAE?

Notice Period in UAE

Employers and employees need to comply with the notice period in UAE except in certain circumstances. If an employee (or an employer) fails to comply with said period, they must comply with a penalty. The guidelines are included in the UAE labor law, specifically in Article 119, and are as follows:

  • If one of the parties does not comply with the period or reduces it, they must pay compensation to the other party. In this case, it is known as compensation instead of notice and you must pay even if the failure does not cause harm to the other party.

In addition, the payment must be equal to the salary of the employee covering the full notice period or the reduced part.

What is the maximum duration of the notice period mandated by UAE law?

The maximum notice period in UAE cannot be longer than 90 days, although it is commonly 30 days. However, for day laborers it is a maximum of 30 days if the employee has 5 or more years of service in the company. On the other hand, employees who are on probation will only have to provide 14 days of notice.

Conversely, you must consider that there may be an agreement between the company and the worker to establish a different time. The important thing is that the rules established in the contract do not violate government laws.

What is the notice period for employees under a limited contract in the UAE?

Limited-term contracts in the country are those that have a specific time to complete. In this case, the notice period in UAE for limited contract is a minimum of 30 days and a maximum of 90 days. In this way, both parties can be prepared to face the end of the contract thanks to the long period available.

Also, companies must have specific time prepared in employment contracts to clearly define these periods. They must also specify the valid reasons why the employee or employer can terminate the contract early.

What is the notice period for employees under an unlimited contract in the UAE?

Unlike a limited employment contract, unlimited ones do not have a specific expiration date. As with limited contracts, the notice period in UAE for unlimited contracts is 30 days. However, there is the possibility of extending this period if both the employer and the employee must reach an agreement.

For these cases, companies must define the specific aspects related to the notice period. Furthermore, if the parties agree, they can establish compensation instead of a notice period.

Is There a Difference for Notice Period By The Employer And Resignation By The Employee?

In this case, the notice period in UAE differs in the aspect related to the maximum time for both parties. Thus, the period for the employer is commonly 30 days but for the employee, the time can be between 30 and 90 days. Additionally, the completion and notification process differs subtly between the worker and the company for which they work.

On the side of the employee, he makes a formal notification to the worker, informing the specific period to end the employment relationship. Moreover, according to the law, the notification must be in writing and both parties must sign the document. In this way, they maintain the legality of the process and the employee can prepare to accept the termination of employment.

For their part, employees must notify the employer of the moment in which they will comply with the termination. In addition, as in the process by the employer, the employee must notify the final date in writing. In any case, both parties must comply with their contractual obligations during the notice period, after notification.

Moreover, some employers may request a meeting with the employee to learn the reasons for termination of employment. In this way, they can make adjustments or analyses to improve aspects related to worker resignation. For their part, employees help their employers with the transition, completing projects, and handing over responsibilities.

Therefore, employees and employers must be candid during the process as it is essential for a smooth transition for both. The important thing is that each party is aware of the notice period in UAE to comply with local laws. If you require more information regarding the notice period or other employment issues, just contact us.

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    Connect Staffing is established by Connect Group to connect you with life-giving opportunities and discover solutions to your tough hiring challenges, whether you’re establishing a career or a business.

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