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UAE Labor Laws
A limited term contract is valid for a defined period; therefore, it must include the termination date. However, if necessary, it can be prolonged for a further period in accordance to the terms of United Arab Emirates (UAE) labor laws. This means that prior to hiring an employee, the employer must present him or her with an employment contract that will stipulate terms, conditions, and labor laws that relate to a specific job. Thus, in the healthcare sector, before hiring a nurse, the employer must prepare a legally binding limited employment contract that is compliant with the UAE Federal Labor Law Code No.8 of 1980. In this case study, the contract will be presented to a non-national nurse who will be employed for 3 years at Abu Dhabi Medical Center located at International Business Center Building 27, West 10, Three Sails Tower, Abu Dhabi, the UAE.
Notably, the nurse will work under the limited employment contract that is accordance with UAE labor laws. An employment contract serves as an agreement between the employer and the employee under which the latter agrees to work under the management and control of the employer for a specified remuneration. On the other hand, the Abu Dhabi Medical Center will employ a non-national nurse (Leila Amina Mohamed) to serve as a midwife under a limited employment contract for three years. The employment will commence on December, 12, 2016, and end on December, 15, 2019.
Duties of a Midwife Nurse in the UAE Healthcare Sector
• Providing special care for women.
• Diagnosing, treating, and managing care of women with acute and chronic illnesses.
• Conducting physical examination of the patients (Pillitteri, 2010).
• Interpreting medical history of the patients.
• Managing care based on diagnostic tests and procedures.
• Assisting in child delivery (Pillitteri, 2010).
• Attending patients on issues related to pregnancy.
• Providing care to new-born babies and infants.
• Collaborating with other healthcare professionals to provide holistic patient care.
• Counselling and educating patients (Pillitteri, 2010).
Salary will be paid on a monthly basis by depositing money directly to the bank account of the employee. Remuneration should include the cost of the living allowance and any grant given to the employer. Salary will be paid in the currency that the employer and the employee will agree on. In this case, the nurse will receive a monthly salary of Dhs. 205,000 and additional allowances of Dhs 70,000. However, if the employer does not pay the salaries as agreed, it will be a violation of UAE labor laws.
The employee is entitled to allowances such as housing, a car, and utilities. In addition, after completion of the contract, the employee will be given repatriation allowances to pay for expenses such as a ticket to the native country. However, as the nurse will be working under a limited contract, she will not be entitled to an educational allowance (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
The maximum working time is 8 hours per day. However, due to dynamism of the nursing environment, the working hours can be increased. The employee should not work for five consecutive hours without taking breaks for rest, meals, or prayers (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). In addition, the nurse will also be working in shifts, that is, some days she will be on duty at night and others during the day.
The nature of nursing may require the employee to work overtime. In this case, the nurse will be entitled to overtime pay; it is equivalent to the wage paid during ordinary working hours plus an additional amount of not less that 25% of the wage (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). However, if the overtime period will fall between 9.00 p.m. and 4 a.m., she will be entitled to overtime pay of not less than 50% of the wage for the time she worked (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). In any case, overtime should not exceed two hours per day unless it is an emergency or in case of a serious accident.
For every year of service, the employee will be entitled to annual leave. That is, a monthly leave of two days if her services is more than six months and less than one year. Second, the nurse will receive a minimum of 30 days off annually if the services exceed one year (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). The annual leave is calculated on the basis of months rather than working days. However, if she fails to report to work after the expiry of the leave period, remuneration will be deducted for the days she will be absent. Additionally, the employee will be paid the basic wage plus the housing allowance and other allowances she receives in a normal working month (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). The employer should also pay full wage and the vacation pay the employee has accrued before she takes her leave.
Once during the nurse’s employment, the employer will give her a special unpaid leave to go for Haj, which should not exceed 30 days (Singarum & Kumar, 2015). This period is not a part of the employee’s annual leave.
As a working woman, the nurse is entitled to maternity leave with a full pay for the period of 45 days, which includes both pre and post-delivery period. However, she must provide continuous service for a period of not less than one year to receive maternity leave (Singarum & Kumar, 2015). Therefore, if the nurse will become pregnant before working for one year, she will be paid 50 percent of her maternity leave. In addition, after the end of the maternity leave, the nurse can discontinue work for a maximum of one hundred days without pay if she cannot resume her duties because of an illness (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007). However, such illness shall be evidenced by a medical certificate issued by a medical professional to attest that the illness resulted from pregnancy or delivery. Besides, when bearing her child, the employee will be given two breaks each day not exceeding half an hour for a period of 18 months (Singarum & Kumar, 2015). Additional breaks are considered as a part of working hours and do not infer any reduction of remuneration.
The employee is entitled to official holidays with full payment on the following occasions:
• Hijri New Year’s Day
• Gregorian New Year’s Day
• Eid Al Fitr (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
• Eid Al Adha and Wagf
• Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday
• Isra and Al Miraj
• National Day (Terterov, 2006).
While the nurse will be working in a private sector, she may not be granted a holiday when the employer deems it unnecessary. However, in such a case, the employer will pay her for not taking the holiday.
The nurse is an employee; therefore, she is entitled to sick leave. In this case, the employee must report to the employer any injuries or illnesses that are preventing her from working within a maximum period of two days (Singarum & Kumar, 2015). Nonetheless, if the nurse falls ill during a probation period, then she is not entitled to any paid sick leave. After a period of three months of continuous services following the probation period, she will be entitled to sick leave with the preservation of full wage for the first 15days and half wage for the next 30 days. The period after 30 days of sickness will be not paid (Terterov, 2006). However, if the illness is directly caused by her misconduct, she will not be paid sick leave at all. On the other hand, if the employer issues any notice of termination during the sick leave, it will not be valid (Singarum & Kumar, 2015).
According to the labor laws in the UAE, the probation period can cover a period of 6 months. Once this period is completed, it will be included in the overall employment term and will be taken into account when calculating gratuity and other benefits (Singarum & Kumar, 2015). However, either of the parties can terminate the employment contract without providing a solid explanation. In case of termination, the employee will not be liable to receive the end of service benefits from the employer. Once the employee has completed this period, it will be considered as a part of the overall employment term that will be taken into account when calculating severance pay and other benefits (Terterov, 2006).
Termination of Employment
Termination of employment can occur even when the nurse is working under a limited contract. Both the employer and the employee can terminate employment depending on the causes of such an action. However, a written notice of 30days should be presented (Terterov, 2006).
The employer can dismiss an employee in any of the following cases. If the employee:
• Had submitted fake documents and certificates.
• Commits a mistake causing the employer substantial losses. However, the employer must inform the Ministry of the incident within 48 hours (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
• Violates instructions that relate to safety or fails to carry out his basic duties as stated in the contract.
• Is convicted by the court for crimes that involve honor, honesty, and public morals (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
• Is found intoxicated during the working hours or physically assaults other members of staff.
• Is absent without legitimate reasons for more than seven continuous or 20 intermittent days within one year (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
On the other hand, the employee can terminate a contract if the employer:
• Does not fulfill his obligations as provided in the contract.
• Assaults her or her legal representatives.
• Makes changes to the terms of the contract without notifying the employee (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
End of Service Benefits
At the end of the contract, the employer is obliged to provide the employee with a service certificate. It is free of charge and states the date the employment commenced, the last day of service, the nature of work, last wages and allowances. Moreover, the employee is entitled to the end of service gratuity that is calculated based on the duration of employment (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
In order to employ a non-Emirati national, the application must be made to the Ministry and approved before the applicant enters the UAE. In addition to obtaining the approval, there are certain immigration procedures that should be followed (“The Report: Dubai 2007,” 2007).
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