Statutory Leaves in UAE as per New Labor law (Federal Law No.33 of 2021)

HLB UAE Payroll Team


HLB HAMT - Accounting Firm in UAE
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    The balance between work and private life is currently one of the most important components of the company structure. Understand how time off in the United Arab Emirates is critical to keeping your employees happy.

    Helping customers across a wide variety of industries is a long-standing tradition for HLB HAMT. With our in-depth expertise, we are able to provide you with clear and understandable information on the leave policies of the United Arab Emirates.

    A leave of absence is generally a consent that you give your employees to be off work for a predetermined period of days. As of February 2, 2022, Federal Law No. 33 of 2021, which went into force in the UAE, regulates leave days. In accordance with this legislation, employees of the United Arab Emirates are entitled to the following types of leave

    A. Annual Leave

    According to Article 29 of the new UAE labour law, annual leave entitlement policies for employees are as follows:

    • Thirty (30) Days- if they have served one year of service; and
    • Two (2) days per month- if they have served for six months but not one year

    The employee will receive leave for the fraction of the final year of service if his or her employment is terminated prior to using all of their annual leave balance. According to the employment contract, part-time employees are entitled to annual leave based on the number of hours they worked.

    B. Sick leave

    The employee on probation is not eligible for sick leave with pay during the probationary period. It is only after a probationary period that sick leave becomes operational. The act now limits sick leave to no more than 90 days per year of employment.

    • First 15 days will be full pay
    • Next 30 days will be half Pay
    • For the remaining 45 days, there will be no pay

    According to Article 31 of the UAE Labor Law which mandates that employees produce their employers with a medical report issued by a medical organisation within three days of being sick.

    C. Maternity Leave

    A female employee is eligible for a 60-day maternity leave, which includes:

    • First 45-days will be full pay
    • Next 15 days will be half pay

    Up to 30 days ahead to the anticipated due date of delivery, a female employee may submit her maternity leave application. If she suffers an illness during her pregnancy or after giving birth and is not able to work again, she may take an extra 45 days of unpaid leave in place of the standard maternity leave described above.

    A medical certificate obtained by the appropriate medical authority must be used to demonstrate the ailment. These leave days may be continuous or scattered.

    For more details, please follow the link Maternity Leave in UAE

    D. Parental leave

    The UAE is the first Arab nation to provide parental leave for its private sector workforce. Employees are entitled to five working days of parental leave starting with the birth of their child and up to six months. Both parents have the option of applying for parental leave, which is paid leave.

    For more details, please follow the link Parental Leave in UAE

    E. Compassionate Leave

    Compassionate or bereavement leave may be granted to employees to mourn the death of a close relative. In the UAE, a private sector employee is eligible to:

    • A five-day paid leave in the case of a spouse’s demise
    • A three-day paid leave starts from the date of the occurrence of the death of a grandparent, grandchild, sibling, parent, or child.

    For more details, please follow the link Compassionate Leave in UAE
    F. Study Leave

    The UAE has incorporated paid study leave into the country’s newly updated labour law because it recognizes the importance of education in a worker’s career and overall development.

    If a worker is enrolled in one of the accredited educational institutions in the UAE, they are eligible for a 10-day paid leave of absence to take an examination. To be eligible for study leave, an employee must have worked for the company for at least two years.

    For more details, please follow the link Study Leave in UAE

    G. Sabbatical leave

    Private sector employees in the UAE are eligible for a paid sabbatical leave, which is considered a prolonged leave from work to complete their national service.

    For more details, please follow the link Sabbatical Leave in UAE

    Final Reflections

    It is essential that your HR Directorate understands and appropriately applies the relevant leave regulations in order to encourage increased efficiency, to comply with labour laws, to preserve excellent interactions with personnel, and to prevent lawsuits.


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