UAE jobs: How to claim, calculate overtime pay

Not every employee is entitled to this benefit — here's all you need to know about the regulations

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Ashish Mehta

Published: Sun 6 Nov 2022, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Sun 6 Nov 2022, 5:10 PM

Question: I work as a salesman for a Dubai-based company. Since my job entails fieldwork, I end up working beyond the stipulated hours. Am I eligible for overtime? If yes, what kind of evidence can I submit to claim it?

Answer: It is assumed that you are employed by a mainland entity based in Dubai. Therefore, the provisions of the UAE's Employment Law and Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022 on the Implementation of Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021 regarding the Regulation of Employment Relations (the 'Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022') are applicable.

In the UAE, the normal working hours per day is eight hours. This is in accordance with Article 17(1) of the Employment Law, which states: “The maximum ordinary working hours shall be (8) eight working hours a day or (48) forty-eight working hours a week.”

However, if an employer calls upon an employee to work for additional hours in a day, it may not be more than two hours a day.

This is in accordance with Article 15(3) of Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022: "The employer may instruct the employee to work overtime over the normal working hours, provided that the overtime does not exceed two hours per day unless the work is necessary to prevent the occurrence of a serious loss or a serious accident or to eliminate or mitigate the effects thereof. In any case, the total working hours shall not exceed 144 hours every three weeks.”

An employee is entitled to overtime pay of additional 25 per cent of basic pay — based on the hours of overtime work performed by the employee.


This is in accordance with Article 19(2) of the Employment Law, which states: “If the work circumstances require that the employee be employed for hours exceeding the ordinary working hours, such extended time shall be deemed overtime for which the employee shall be paid his basic salary for his normal hours of work plus a supplement of at 25 per cent of that salary.”

If an employee is employed in a managerial or supervisory designation or if an employee is required to work on rare occasions — in case of urgent requirement — then the overtime pay may not apply. This is in accordance with Article 15 (4) (b) and (e) of the Cabinet Resolution No.1 of 2022.

Based on the aforementioned provisions of law, you may be entitled to overtime pay if your employment requires you to work beyond working hours at regular intervals.

However, you may not be entitled to overtime pay if your role with the employer is supervisor or a team leader even though your designation is salesman and if your employer calls upon you to complete an urgent assignment — which you were not able to finish during regular working hours due to various reasons. An employer may assign such work only on rare occasions even though the provisions of prevailing employment regulations are silent related to the same.

If you feel that you work for additional hours beyond the regular working hours, you may claim overtime from your employer — provided you have written confirmation from your employer either by email, WhatsApp conversation, or in writing — calling upon you to work after regular working hours.

You may contact the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation for more clarifications.

Ashish Mehta is the founder and Managing Partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates. He is qualified to practise law in Dubai, the United Kingdom and India. Full details of his firm on: Readers may e-mail their questions to: or send them to Legal View, Khaleej Times, PO Box 11243, Dubai.


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