UAE unemployment insurance: 10 criteria employees must meet to be eligible for compensation

The mandatory scheme, that comes into effect from early 2023, will apply to employees of all nationalities in the public and private sectors


Nandini Sircar

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Published: Fri 23 Dec 2022, 6:00 AM

While job loss can be a stressful time for any individual, under a new Involuntary Loss of Employment Scheme, UAE citizens as well as expats will now be eligible to receive unemployment insurance.

The mandatory scheme that aims to protect employees against the risk of job loss, effective from early 2023, applies to employees of all nationalities in the public and private sectors.

However, in order to be eligible for compensation, the insured must meet the following criteria, according to the official Involuntary Loss of Employment Scheme website:

Eligibility Criteria

  • There must be a minimum subscription period of 12 consecutive months for the insured in the scheme
  • There must be no interruption in the subscription for 3 consecutive months
  • The insured must be committed to pay all the insurance premiums due on time
  • The insured must prove that the reason of unemployment is not due to resignation
  • The insured may not be dismissed for disciplinary reasons under the Labour Relations Law and the Human Resources Law of the federal government, in addition to any applicable legislation
  • The insured must submit the claim within 30 days from the date of loss of the work relationship, or the settlement of the labour complaint referred to the judiciary
  • The insured worker should not have an existing complaint related to the absence from work
  • The insured shall not be entitled for compensation if there has been fraud or deceit involved in his claim, or if the establishment they work for is fictitious
  • The loss of employment should not be the result of non-peaceful labour strikes or stoppages, whether they result in harm or not
  • The insured must be legally present in the UAE

Additionally, the scheme stipulates that the loss of employment should not be the result of one of the following:

  • As a result of war, declared or undeclared, riot, insurrection, armed rebellion, revolution, military or usurping force, invasion, act of a foreign enemy, hostilities, civil war, or civil disorder
  • As a result of a discharge of pollutants, a nuclear event, a radioactive, toxic, explosive or other dangerous effect of any explosive nuclear equipment or part of such equipment
  • As a direct or indirect result of biological or chemical pollution resulting from or contributing to terrorism
  • As a result of a direct action by the government of the United Arab Emirates that led to the expropriation or nationalisation of the employer’s facility, or the confiscation of his money leading to his insolvency
  • As a result of the occurrence of force majeure in accordance with the Civil Transactions Law of the United Arab Emirates No. (5) of 1985.


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