The UAE legislator has stipulates some rules to regulate and arrange the matter of termination of employment contract whether it happened by the employer or the employee so it will be lawful if it happened in specific circumstances or it will be considered as arbitrary dismissal.
Arbitrary dismissal is any form of dismissal or coerced resignation for unlawful or unproven reasons,
or against the specific rules and regulations set down by the government.
When the employer has the right to terminate the contract?
Article 120 of the UAE Labour Law clearly states the following reasons for which termination without notice is deemed lawful;
“An employer may dismiss a worker without notice if and only if the worker:
a. Assumes a false identity or nationality or submits forged certificates or documents.
b. Is engaged on probation and is dismissed during or at the end of the probationary period; and
c. Commits a fault resulting in substantial material loss to the employer, provided that the latter notifies the labour department of the incident within 48 hours of his becoming aware of its occurrence;
d. Disobeys instructions on the safety of work or workplace, provided that such instructions are in writing and posted at a conspicuous place and are communicated verbally to the worker, in case he is illiterate;
e. Defaults on his basic duties under the employment contract and fails to redress such default despite a written interrogation and a warning that he will be dismissed if such default is repeated;
f. Reveals any confidential information of the firm for which he works.
g. Is finally convicted by a competent court of a crime against honour, honesty or public morals.
h. Is found in a state of drunkenness or under the influence of a narcotic drug during working hours.
i. Assaults the employer, the manager in charge or any of his workmates during working hours.
j. He is absent himself from work without a valid reason for more than 20 non-successive days in one single year, or for more than seven successive days.”
The above article states the reasons that give the employer the right to terminate the contract lawfully if applied without even a notice and it shall not be considered as arbitrary dismissal.
We at Yasin Al Hamed Advocates & Legal Consultants always advice our clients to follow all the rules required by the law before terminating their employment contract, it might be confused to apply and follow the rules and provision of law in different matters and different circumstances because eventually the result may be changed.
Redundancy can be valid reason for termination?
It was noticed that most of employment contracts are terminated because of redundancy, this tone was increased recently by the employers and used it as a valid reason to terminate the contracts as a result of the financial crisis.
Dubai Court of Cassation has stated clearly in its principles that although the employer has the right to arrange his company internally by reducing the employees or cancelling some posts in his company, but such termination for any employee shall be subject to the court supervision which will determine whether or not the employee is arbitrarily dismissed or if he was dismissed for a reason unconnected to the work.
When the employee has the right to terminate the contract?
Article 121 of the UAE Labour Law stated that:
“The Worker may abandon his work without notice in either of the following cases:
a. If the employer fails to honour his obligations towards the worker, as provided for in the contract or in this law.
b. If he is assaulted by the employer or the employer’s legal representative.”
The expression of “Employer’s obligations” which is mentioned in the previous article shall include all employees rights which are mentioned in their employment contract or the law, such as without limitation paying salaries, allowances, accommodation (if provided) and any commitments agreed in the contract. Therefore failing of the employer to comply with the above commitments will not only give the employee the right to terminate his contract but also to claim compensation for arbitrary dismissal as considered by the law. Such compensation shall be determined by the court taking in consideration what is stipulated in Article 123 that when assessing compensation for wrongful termination, to take into account the nature of the employee’s duties, the employee’s length of service, the amount of loss the employee has sustained as a result of the termination.
Interpretation of law provisions are so complicated so don’t decide termination of contract whether you are employer or employee based only on your personal knowledge, always try to have legal advice from employment lawyer who used to deal with that on daily basis; this will help to safe than sorry.