المقالات القانونية / قانون العمل


Changes to Labour Complaint Process: MOHRE Now Making Decisions

employment

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April 16, 2024


In a significant update to the regulation of labour relations, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) has been authorized to make decisions in individual labour disputes. This pivotal change, enacted through Federal Decree-Law No. 33/2021, has far-reaching implications for both employers and workers in the UAE.

Amendments to the UAE Labour Code, specifically Article 54, redefine the process by which disputes regarding rights under the Decree Law are resolved. Previously, such disputes were typically handled through legal channels. However, with the implementation of Federal Decree-Law No. 20/2023, MOHRE now plays a central role in resolving these conflicts.

Under the amended Article 54, parties to a dispute – whether employers, workers, or beneficiaries – are required to submit their grievances to MOHRE for examination. This marks a shift towards a more unified and efficient approach to dispute resolution. MOHRE is tasked with reviewing the claims and taking necessary actions to achieve an amicable settlement between the involved parties.

Key Provisions of the Amended Article 54:

  • Amicable Settlement: MOHRE aims to settle disputes amicably between employers and workers, promoting immediate resolution without the need for lengthy legal proceedings.
  • Decision-Making Authority: MOHRE is authorized to issue final decisions in disputes where the claim value does not exceed AED 50,000. This grants MOHRE significant jurisdiction in resolving a broad variety of conflicts.
  • Judicial Review: Parties dissatisfied with MOHRE's decision hold the right to seek recourse through the competent Court of Appeal within 15 working days. However, such appeals must adhere to specified timelines, and the Court, authorized to further proceedings, ensures timely settlement of disputes.
  • Preservation of Rights: Throughout the dispute resolution process, MOHRE may enforce measures to safeguard the rights of workers, including ensuring the continued payment of salaries in certain circumstances.

Employer Obligations and Worker Protection:

In cases where disputes continue beyond MOHRE's intervention, the Ministry may refer the matter to the competent court accompanied by a memorandum outlining the dispute and MOHRE's recommendation. Moreover, to safeguard workers' interests, employers may be required to continue salary payments for up to 2 months during disputes, as per the Implementing Regulation of the Decree-Law.

Furthermore, Article 55 introduces exemptions from judicial fees for labour cases, easing the financial burden on workers following legal remedies. This provision underlines the government's commitment to facilitating access to justice for all members of the workforce.

These changes enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of labour dispute resolution mechanisms. By entrusting MOHRE with decision-making authority, the government aims to promote fairness, expedite resolutions, and uphold the rights of both employers and workers.

Conclusion:

Employers and workers alike need to familiarize themselves with these legislative amendments and understand their implications fully. Adherence to the revised procedures outlined in the Labour Code is important to navigating disputes effectively and ensuring compliance with the law.

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