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New UAE Labour Law: Termination rules during probation period revised

According to updated UAE labour rules, private sector employers cannot terminate employees during their probation period without providing a 14-day written notice. The federal law, part of a new order signed by UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan on November 15, will go into force on February 2, 2022. This changed law will govern labour relations in the private sector across a variety of work types, including part-time and temporary work, and protect employee rights and implement new leave policies.

The decree governs labour relations in the private sector and includes a variety of work types, including part-time and temporary work, as well as new legislation for mourning leaves. The employer cannot extend the six-month probation term. Employees must work under the contract terms once the probation period has been completed, with the probation time counted as part of the overall service.

What New Labour Law says about termination during the Probation period?

According to Federal Law No. 33 of 2021, dismissing an employee during a probation period of no more than six months must be done in writing 14 days before termination. Employees who leave the country without notice during their probation will be prohibited from acquiring a work permit for a year. If one of the parties infringes these terms, the offending party must compensate the other with a salary equal to ordinary workdays for the remainder of the notice period. Employers are also prohibited from seizing employees’ official documents or charging them directly or indirectly for recruiting charges under the new law. Employees on probation must give one month’s notice if they want to change employment.

14 Days’ Notice period – If employee desire to leave UAE during Probation

Those who desire to leave the UAE during their probation term must give a 14-day notice, failing which they would be barred from obtaining a work permit for a year. Whether they are the employer or the employee, Violators will be required to pay the penalty equal to the number of ordinary workdays left in the notice period. Under the new rule, employers are prohibited from seizing employees’ passports and other legal papers and charging workers for recruiting charges.

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization unveiled the new decree legislation to protect employee rights in the ever-growing labour market while increasing flexibility and competitiveness.

Employees in the private sector are entitled to up to five days of mourning leave in the UAE:

As part of new rules published on November 15, private-sector workers in the UAE will be granted up to five days of mourning leave commencing February 2, 2022. President Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan has issued a federal order that covers various topics and occupational categories. According to the degree of the employee’s relationship with the deceased, the amended law grants compassionate leave or mourning leave ranging from three to five days.

Option for Paternity Leave 

Workers will take vacations under the new law, which includes five-day paternity leave for private-sector employees. Cabinet will decide on any other leave. The rule was enacted in reaction to the quickly changing workplace, exacerbated by technology improvements and the emergence of Covid-19. “It will apply to a variety of employment types, including full-time, part-time, temporary, and flexy work, among others.”

HHS Lawyers & Legal Consultants is made up of a group of the most significant labour lawyers in Dubai and labour lawyers from Abu Dhabi and other Emirates. We provide a comprehensive range of services, including UAE labour law legal guidance, to help you become a more courteous and responsible employer. Employers must be informed of the employment regulations and effectively comply with them, which is critical for us. As a result, as UAE labour law experts, we guarantee that you are well-informed on all aspects of this and give you labour law guidance in Dubai.

For more than a decade, we have been one of Dubai’s premier labour law companies. Our skilled attorneys will give you outstanding service while adhering to global standards since they completely understand the local legal system and procedures. The unrivalled quality of our service would alleviate you of any responsibilities or discomfort, establishing you as a decent business citizen.


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.