UAE: Ministry detects nearly 3,000 cases of salary payment violations in 10 months

Offences include cases where recruitment fees were deducted from workers’ pay and some that involved employees signing fake documents of having received their wages

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A Staff Reporter

Published: Wed 9 Nov 2022, 5:25 PM

Last updated: Wed 9 Nov 2022, 5:43 PM

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (Mohre) has recorded 26,104 labour law violations as inspectors conducted 485,000 visits to private sector facilities across the UAE between January and October 2022.

“Legal actions were taken against the violating entities and relevant fines imposed,” it said.

Among these labour violations were 2,973 cases of non-compliance with payment of wages. These were referred to the public prosecution for further legal action. Of 178 cases of employers holding back employees’ passports, 132 were settled.

The offences also included cases where recruitment fees were deducted from workers’ salaries. And about 30 involved workers signing fake documents of having received their wages and incorrect data entered in the Wage Protection System (WPS) to circumvent the provisions. Two cases of sexual harassment were also reported.

Mohsen Al Nassi, acting assistant undersecretary for Inspection Affairs at Mohre, said: "The inspection visits are based on transparency and impartiality by the ministry's inspectors, who have a deep understanding of the laws regulating labour relations and the executive regulations, especially in terms of the rights and duties of employers as well as the workers."


Fines issued

The ministry imposed administrative fines on violations detected during the inspection visits. These included 22,087 cases of non-compliance with the procedures for issuing work permit contracts and facilities that do not practise their licensed activities; 21 of practising activities of coordination and of employment agencies without the requisite licence; and 14 of non-compliance with the approved standards of labour accommodations.

In 165 cases, companies failed to ensure the relevant work environment for workers in open areas. In 17 cases, the ministry was not notified about work injuries, occupational diseases or death of a worker on duty.

The ministry's inspectors have the legal authority to issue violations against non-compliant entities and prepare reports that detail the violations.

The official praised the commitment of most employers to labour market legislation, which "confirms their awareness of the impact of these legislations, especially in terms of stabilising the work relationship and increasing overall productivity."


How inspections are done

Labour inspectors have the authority to enter any facility subject to the law regulating labour relations at any time for inspections. They can summon the employer or their representative to come to the facility’s headquarters, labour accommodation or the ministry.

The inspectors have the right to carry out examinations or investigations necessary to verify the safety of implementing the legal obligations of the employer; question the employer or workers individually or in the presence of witnesses; review the documents and data that the employer must keep and obtain a print-out if necessary; and take samples of materials used or circulated in industrial processes and other works subject to inspection.

The inspector may, if necessary, request a medical examination of the workers in the facility and conduct research to ensure the suitability of work conditions and their impact on the health of workers.

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