Understandably so, one of the most common questions brought up by employees is about their right to annual leaves. Here is everything you need to know according to the UAE labour law.

Annual leave is a widely discussed topic when it comes to employee benefits. Studies have shown that taking vacations and switching off from work actually helps to spark creativity and increase work productivity. Here are some of the most common questions on people’s minds pertaining to annual leave.

1. What are the entitlements of an employee with regard to annual leave?

According to the ministry of labour, every employee is entitled to a leave of not less than:

· 30 days a year, where the employee’s period of service is more than a year.

· Two days a month, where the employee’s period of service is more than six months but less than one year.

2. Does an employee get paid during annual leave?

Every employee in the UAE is entitled to his/her basic wage and the housing allowance if applicable and stated in the employment contract.

3. Can an employer make an employee work during his/her annual leave?

If the circumstances are such that it is necessary for the employee to work during all or part of his/her annual leave days, the leaves are to be carried forward to the next leave year.

If the leaves are not carried forward, the employer must pay the employees remuneration, plus a leave allowance in respect of the days worked at a rate equal to his/her basic wage.

4. How many times can a worker be employed during his/her annual leave?

It is unlawful for an employee to work during his/her annual leave more than once in two successive years.

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5. Who decides the duration of the annual leave cycle?

The employer has the right to fix the beginning of the annual leave and if required, divide such leaves into not more than two periods.

6. When should an employee’s annual leave wage be paid?

An employee should be paid their full wage before the annual leave as well as the annual leave pay prescribed in accordance with the provisions of this law.

7. What about after an employee is terminated?

If an employee is terminated or leaves his/her job after serving through the period of notice, they are entitled to a concession according to the number of annual leave days not taken.

8. Are you allowed to take a leave to make pilgrimage?

According to law, all Muslim employees are entitled to 30 days of unpaid leave once in order to perform and complete Hajj.

If you do any questions regarding annual leave in the UAE, you can always ask an expert in our FAQ section and we will get back to with an answer.