DIFC’s new employment law comes into effect

Tags: Labour

28 Aug, 2019

As published in Khaleej Times

Provisions address issues such as paternity leave, sick pay and end-of-service settlements.

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) has announced that the new Employment Law – No 2 of 2019 – will come into effect on August 28, 2019.

The DIFC Employment Law enhancements are integral to creating an attractive environment for the almost 24,000-strong workforce based in the DIFC to thrive, while protecting and balancing the interests of both employers and employees, said Essa Kazim, governor of DIFC, in a statement earlier.

Revised provisions coming into effect address key issues, including paternity leave, sick pay and end-of-service settlements.

The law centres around the necessity to balance the needs of employers and employees in the DIFC while maintaining a robust framework of employment standards that contribute to the success of the centre.

Employer-focused provisions include expansion of employee duties, reduction of the statutory sick pay, limiting the application of mandatory late penalty payments for end-of-service settlements and recognising settlement agreements between employers and employees.

Employee-focussed provisions include the introduction of five days of paternity leave and penalties for discrimination. Penalties have also been introduced to ensure adherence to basic conditions of employment, visa and residency sponsorship.

The new law was subject to substantial research and global benchmarking, as well as thorough public consultation, which helped shape the law to ensure that the DIFC remains the most sophisticated and business-friendly Common Law jurisdiction in the region.