What to do if your employer refuses to pay allowances

Know your legal rights in the UAE.
Question: I am currently working in a school in Sharjah. My school has asked me to retire since my date of birth on my passport is 25/07/1957.

However, my date of birth on the secondary certificate (10th) is mentioned as 21/01/1958. Can I use my 10th class certificate as my proof of birth year? My school has stopped giving me my increment and allowance since 2018 based on my age (above 60) as per my passport. What should I do to get compensated? My last date of duty is March 7, 2019.

Answer:

Pursuant to your queries, the age factor may not be considered a criteria to determine the increment and allowance of an employee in the UAE. It should be noted that the date of birth mentioned in the passport of an individual shall be considered for all official purposes in the UAE and not any other dates mentioned in other documents.

Since January 2011, the Ministry of Human Resources & Emirtisation has been accepting requests for work permits of individuals over the age of 60 years up to the age of 65; thereby enhancing the retirement age from 60 to 65.

As per the prevailing provisions, for all employees working in private sector entities registered under the federal laws of the UAE, the retirement age is 65 years.

However, the age limit of 65 years for retirement may be further increased considering the individuals’ nature of work, his credentials, expertise which is important for the entity he is working for.

Further, granting of increment is discretion of the employer but the company cannot stop your other allowances from your remuneration if these are mentioned in your employment contract registered with the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiritisation (the ‘Ministry’). This is in accordance with Article 60 of the Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 regulating Employment Relations in the UAE (the ‘Employment Law’). It states, “No amount of money may be deducted from an employee’s remuneration in respect of private claims, except in the following cases:

(a) The recovery of advances or amount of money paid to the employee in excess of his entitlements, on condition that the amount deducted in this case does not exceed 10 per cent of his periodic remuneration;

(b) Contributions which the employee is required by law to pay from his remuneration, e.g towards social security and insurance schemes;

(c) The employees contributions to a savings fund or repayment of advances repayable thereto;

(d) Contributions towards any welfare scheme or in respect of any other privileges or services provided by the employer and approved by the Ministry of Human Resources & Emritisation;

(e) Fines imposed upon the employee for any offence he has committed;

(f) Any debt payable in execution of the judgment of a court of law;

Provided that the deduction shall not exceed one-quarter of the employee’s remuneration.

Where two or more debts are payable, the maximum shall be half of employee’s remuneration and the sums of money attached shall be divided pro rata among the beneficiaries, after payment of any legal alimony at the rate of one-quarter of the employee’s remuneration.”

Based on the aforementioned provision of law, if your employer has deducted allowances which are part of your employment contract you may inform the school that it is unlawful.

Therefore, they should pay you the arrears since 2018 along with your end of service benefits on or before your last working day. In the event the employer disagrees to pay the allowances, you may approach the Ministry and file a complaint.

Know the law

The date of birth mentioned in the passport of an individual shall be considered for all official purposes in the UAE and not any other dates mentioned in other documents.

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