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Compensation of Dhs192,000 Given to Terminated Expat in UAE

An expatriate employee in Abu Dhabi was awarded compensation as his contract was proven to be arbitrarily terminated. The expat will be receiving a total of Dhs 192,000 for gratuity, unpaid wages, as well as arbitrary termination compensation. 

Labor Court of Abu Dhabi upheld the Courts of First Instance ruling which found the terminated employee’s employer to be guilty of committing arbitrary dismissal. But, the higher court was able to reduce the amount of compensation for the terminated employee from more than Dhs 260,000 to Dhs 192,000.  

The expat, prior to the termination, was earning monthly Dhs 24,000. He claimed that he hadn’t been receiving his salary or even his end of service benefit. He demanded payment for unpaid wages, overtime and warning allowances, annual leave allowance, and compensation for unfair termination. Apart from that, he also wanted an experience certificate from his employer. 

The courts appointed an accounting expert in UAE  from top accounting firms in Dubai and the professional claimed that up to Dhs 100,000 is due to him as salary and another Dhs 4,000 as leave allowance. His gratuity pay totals Dhs 33,000 and the rest will be compensation for the dismissal. 


UAE Regulations on Unfair Dismissal for Employees 

According to UAE labor legislation, employees are able to file claims against their employers for unfair dismissal and when they are forced in quitting work for any of the following reasons:

  • If employees are taking action regarding the health and safety protocols and environment of the workplace; 
  • If employees are requesting their rights that are mentioned in the labor law of the UAE and in their respective employment contracts; 
  • If employees are taking maternity leave; 
  • If employees disclose information that are related to a contravention within the workplace

Arbitrary Dismissal in Terms of UAE Labour Law

Acceptable for Filing Arbitrary Dismissal Claims in UAE

An employee will be able to file a claim for unlawful or arbitrary dismissal if the employer or the business violates the local legislation and commits an act that is qualified to be considered as a breach of contract resulting in an employee’s unfair termination. Acceptable reasons for filing arbitrary dismissal claims are as follows:

  • Violating the employment contract that’s still valid and removing employee’s essential benefits; 
  • When an employer is making an unjustified change within the workplace setting, as well as the working conditions of the employee e.g. work schedule or timings;
  • When an employee has failed in providing the necessary support that is required of an employee in order to perform his or her work duties; 
  • When an employee is demoted without any justification given or a valid reason; 
  • When an employer has failed in providing a healthy and safe work environment for employees; 
  • Whenever an employer or business organization fails or refuses in acting against workplace bullying and harassment at the workplace; 
  • When an organization fails and denies an employee of his or her remuneration 

According to UAE labor law article 122, arbitrary termination in UAE, which is unlawful, is when an employer fires an employee regardless of nationality or citizenship status or forces an employee in resigning for reasons which aren’t related to the employee’s job performance. It also occurs when an employee has filed a complaint regarding the employer, and he’s forced in resigning on the basis of making a complaint. But, according to UAE labor laws, there are a couple of conditions wherein an employer in the UAE may be permitted in terminating an employee even if a notice is not given, and that includes the following:

  • When an employee has found to have submitted forged documentation or has assumed a false identity; 
  • When the employee is still under the probationary period; 
  • When an employee has committed a huge error that resulted to material and colossal losses to the workplace and the employer 


Employment and Labor Lawyers in the UAE 

The labor legislation in the country is constantly updated in order to protect the best interests of both the employer and the employee. If you need the advice of a lawyer or legal consultant, we suggest you speak to one now. At Lawyers in Dubai, our team of lawyers and legal consultants in UAE will help you in gathering all relevant information, including evidence, in the event that your employer has breached your employment contract. 

As our client, you can expect our full attentional and professional guidance irrespective of your rank in an organization. Our team of employment lawyers can help ensure that you are made fully aware on all compensations and rights that you may make a claim for. Even from the very beginning of an investigation up to hearings, we will provide you with the guidance you need. Yes, this includes moral support when going through a court proceeding. Call us today for more information regarding UAE labor law. You can talk to our experts over the phone for a quick chat or book a consultation! 

Hazim Darwish

Hazim Darwish, is a Senior Partner of HHS Lawyers in UAE. Practicing law for almost a decade, he has in-depth knowledge on UAE legislation with particular expertise on legal drafting, contract drafting, labor disputes, family law, and regulatory compliance for business organizations. Hazim Darwish also provides counsel on legal rights and obligations in the UAE to clients, including individuals and businesses subject to investigation or prosecution under Criminal Law by major regulators.