Tuesday, May 24, 2022

UAE Gratuity Law: Pay When Worker Leaves Employment

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In the United Arab Emirates, workers are entitled to severance pay should their employment status and the contract be terminated. The payment is commonly known as gratuity payment. Under the UAE gratuity law, there are certain rules to be followed when determining how much an employee being let go should receive as gratuity payment.

The idea behind this gratuity payment is to compensate for the lack of pension for workers from other countries. Depending on the contract, whether it was limited or unlimited, workers are calculated different gratuity. In some cases, the contract specifies the amount of gratuity a worker is entitled to. However, commonly, unlimited contract holders receive less money than those with a limited contract.

dubai gratuity law for workers

Being Fired vs Contract Terminated

There is a difference between being fired, voluntary resignation, and termination of an employment contract is that an employment contract can be terminated by both the employee and the employer, or they can come to a mutual agreement. How the contract ends affects the gratuity computation.

  1. Workers can resign and terminate their contracts. However, there are cases when the employer asks the employee to resign. According to the law, this is still a voluntary decision made by the employee. However, it is worth noting that the employer has no legal rights to force the employee to stay at work. If the employee wishes to terminate the contract, he/she is able to do so.
  2. When being fired, the employer is the one that terminates the contract.
  3. Sometimes, being fired results in no gratuity payment. That is the reason why workers should always seek for a mutual termination, or ask for a resignation.

The formula for UAE Gratuity for Limited and Unlimited Contract

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1. Basic salary ÷ 30 = Daily wage
2. Daily wage x 21 = One-year gratuity figure (Or x30 if applicable)
3. One-year gratuity figure x years of service = Total gratuity owed

(Only continue for Unlimited Contract calculation)

4. Total gratuity owed ÷ 3 = One third (1/3) of total gratuity
5. Either take this figure (between 1 and 3 years) or multiply it by two (between 3 and 5 years)
6. For over 5 years, the total gratuity owed will be payable.
Source: UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation Laws

Gratuity for Limited Contracts

If the contract is limited and shorter than one year, workers are not entitled to a gratuity. However, in the situation where the worker is unfairly fired, he/she can ask for a three months salary as compensation.

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  • In limited contracts that are longer than one year, and the worker has completed the contract duration, he/she has the right to 21 days of salary for every year of the contract. This is if the contract was shorter than five years. For more extended contracts or more than five years of employment, the worker is entitled to 30 days’ salary for every year he has worked.

Less than 1 year of service
Leaving your job before completing one year of service means that you are not entitled to any gratuity pay.

Between 1 year and 5 years of service
An employee is entitled to full gratuity pay based on 21 days’ worth of salary for each year of employment.

5 or more years of service
An employee is entitled to full gratuity pay based on 30 days’ salary for each year of work.

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Calculations for Unlimited Contract gratuity pay

Calculation example
Basic salary example: AED10,000
a. 10,000 ÷ 30 = 333.30. Your daily wage is AED333.30.

b. 330.30 x 21 = 6,936.30. So 21-days salary is AED7,000 (rounded up from AED6,999.30) in gratuity entitlement for each year of service. Multiply this figure for every year of service for up to 5 years.

For 30 days calculation for those exceeding 5 years of service

c. 333.30 x 30 = Dh9,999. So 30-days salary is AED9,999 in gratuity entitlement for each year of service – so long as the total figure does not exceed the total salary of two years.

Therefore, regardless of the years spent at a firm, the total gratuity in the above example cannot exceed AED240,000.

Gratuity for Unlimited Contracts

  • Same as with limited contracts, if working is less than one year, workers are not entitled to a gratuity. The exception for three months’ salary applies here as well. That is if the termination is a result of an unfairly firing.
  • Still, if the employee works for more than one year, and f the contract was terminated by the employer, and it was unfairly fired, the worker is entitled to the same gratuity as with limited agreements.
  • An involuntary resignation, or being forced to resign, results in no gratuity.
  • Workers who resign voluntarily are entitled to gratuity, provided they did it correctly. Workers must give 30 days notice period to their employer. The gratuity pay depends on the time the employee has worked. For less than one year, there is no gratuity; 1-3 years results in 7 days for each year of employment; 3-5 years results in 14 days salary for each year of work; 5+ years results in 21 days for the first five years and 30 days salary for every year after the fifth. A maximum amount of two years worth of pay is set.

Less than 1 year of service
Leaving your job before completing one year of service means that you are not entitled to any gratuity pay.

Between 1 year and 3 years of service
An employee is entitled to one-third (1/3) of the 21-days gratuity pay.

Between 3 years and 5 years of service
An employee is entitled to two-thirds (2/3) of the 21-days gratuity pay.

5 or more years of service
An employee is entitled to full 21-days gratuity pay for each year of service.

Calculation example
Basic salary example: AED10,000

a. 10,000 ÷ 30 = 333.30. Your daily wage is AED333.30

b. 333.30 x 21 = 6,999.30. So 21-days salary is AED6,999.30

Of this figure of AED6,999.30, only 1/3 is payable if you have worked between 1 and 3 years, so the total gratuity pay would be AED2,333.10.

Only 2/3 is payable if you have worked between 3 and 5 years, so the total gratuity pay would be AED4,666.20.

The full AED6,999.30 is payable if you have completed 5 years.

These sample calculations should only be treated for reference only. For any disputes or further clarification, contact the UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation.

Additional Notes

When calculating gratuity, one must consider the final base salary, not the initial salary. The other allowances are not calculated in the gift.

The gratuity is calculated as pro-rata, which means the computation of this severance benefit will cover the entire duration of a worker’s service to the company.

Check the computation of gratuity payment from the Dubai Development Authority.

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21 COMMENTS

  1. I’m working at since 2003 until 2014 and 8 months so how much pay my employer. Start salary 700 since 2003 then make increase salary every yearly. Then now may salary is 2500 so. How do compute that all of 11.8 year a month. Pls reply me. Tnx

  2. I’m working at since 2003 until 2014 and 8 months so how much pay my employer. Start salary 700 since 2003 then make increase salary every yearly. Then now may salary is 2500 so. How do compute that all of 11.8 year a month. Pls reply me. Tnx

  3. I’m working at since 2003 until 2014 and 8 months so how much pay my employer. Start salary 700 since 2003 then make increase salary every yearly. Then now may salary is 2500 so. How do compute that all of 11.8 year a month. Pls reply me. Tnx

  4. hello dear am working 5months here small restaurant and am getting 3months salary still now am working here more than 12hours without off days now I got offer in emirates palace hotel I already resign my job he hold n my passport he didn’t accept my resign letter now and here now too much torched me with coworkers and employer I already given complaint to labor office still they didn’t take action now he told me to don’t come to work wt I do now am frustrated please help me my number is 0558166509 naveen here

  5. Dear sir my daughter working as receptionist in office from 8.30 to 2 pm and then 6 pm to 12 am this ramadan its is right and more prob.that boss toutching his all staff ladys where ever he want and my daughter not allow him he get angry and say he will deduct they money how much he spent in kish island for exit and midical from her salary pls help thanks

  6. Hello my boyfriend sign a cancellation last sunday and give already a ticket going home to philippines without anything on hand. He didnt give him a 1 month stay in uae. Not even telling that he was terminated he just let him signed the cancellation letter. He just make an absent for 2 days then when he meet his boss to give the med cert he just let him signed the cancellation. They just signed it because they were so afraid then go home last tuesday july 7. This company didnt give them over time for 7 months of working not even give them a off and they transfer far from the city not giving transfortation hoping you could help us to this.. the company name is EMARATI 21 CAFE LLC in abu dhabi a new company operated started dec. 2014 this a caravan type of coffee shop that is locatec at al fahlah city near abu dhabi airport whick os in the middle of the dessert. Please help us. My boyfriend now in the philippines they were 2 filipinos who send home. They hired here but still they force to go back home with empyy handed..

  7. Dear sir, I want to know.How we compute gratuity, if working 27 days per month 12 hours daily and receiving salary total of 2,770 dirhams. My contract is un limited with 2000 dirhams basic salary, 6 years completed .

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