Claiming Gratuity (End-of-Service Benefits) When Outside the UAE





In our previous article, we shared a detailed guide on how you can claim your end-of-service benefits after you resigned from your work, and while you are still in the UAE. But, what if you suddenly lose your job while you are not in the UAE? What if you lost your job amidst the pandemic? Is there a way to file a claim for your end-of-service benefits coming from a UAE employer? If there is, how can you claim it?

Also Read: Do’s and Dont’s: How to Draft Your Resignation Letter

Whether you are in the UAE or outside the country, you are entitled to claim your End-of-Service benefits. The Labor Law of the UAE specifically states that if a worker has spent a year or so in continuous service, he will be entitled to end-of-service benefits upon the end of his work. So whether or not it is a resignation or a layoff, you can still claim the benefits you deserve. This is under Article 132 of the UAE Labor Code. You can use this law as a reference in case your employer disagrees. To learn more about the steps on how you can claim it, read the information below.

getting your gratuity if you are outside the uae

How to Claim Your End-of-Service Benefits If You Are NOT in the UAE

Before you take the steps on how you can claim your end-of-service benefits, let’s us recall first the types of contracts when you work in the UAE. Basically, there are two types of contracts in the country—limited (fixed-term) and unlimited contract.

A limited (fixed-term) contract defines how long you are going to work for an employer. By agreeing to work under a fixed-term contract, you agree that you will only serve your employer within the definite time fixed in your contract. The employer and the employee are obliged to follow the terms in the contract. In case your employer terminates you before the end-date in your contract, he may be liable for doing so. Labor ban and compensating the employee are the typical penalties when an employer breaches a fixed-term contract.

On the other hand, an unlimited contract doesn’t fix the term of employment. There is no specific end-date in this term. You can enjoy working for as long as you can unless there’s a discussion between you and your employer as to the end of your term. Under this contract, the employee is required to give a one to three-month notice before terminating his employment.

Whatever your contract is, you are entitled to a gratuity pay. But, the calculation would be different depending on the contract you have. Knowing about how to calculate your gratuity pay will save you from trouble when you talk about it with your employer.

Calculate Your Gratuity Pay

For a limited contract

The Labor Law in the UAE states the conditions for an employee to receive a gratuity pay when he works in the country. If you have spent one or more years in continuous service, you have the right to receive your gratuity pay by the end of your service. Here are the following calculations:

  • If you have served for less than a year, you will not get any gratuity pay or end-of-service benefits.
  • If you have served for more than a year but less than five years, your gratuity pay is equal to your 21 days’ salary for each of the years of your service.
  • If you have worked for an employer for more than five years, you will receive your gratuity pay based on 30 days’ salary of each of the years of your work after the first five years.
  • In all of the cases mentioned, the total gratuity pay should not be more than your salary for two years.

For an unlimited contract

If you are under an unlimited contract, you will receive your gratuity pay based on the following calculations:

  • If you worked for an employer for less than a year, no gratuity pay will be given to you.
  • If you have served for more than a year but less than five years, your gratuity pay is equal to your 21 days’ salary for each of the years of your service.
  • If you have worked for an employer for more than five years, you will receive your gratuity pay based on 30 days’ salary of each of the years of your work after the first five years.
  • In all of the cases mentioned, the total gratuity pay should not be more than your salary for two years.

The above calculations are the same as the fixed-term contract. The difference lies in the condition when an employee decides to resign. Here’s the calculation for that one:

  • If you worked for an employer for less than a year, no gratuity pay will be given to you.
  • If you have served for one to three years, your gratuity pay is equal to 1/3 of your 21 days’ salary for each of the years of your service.
  • If you have served for three to five years, your gratuity pay is equal to 2/3 of your 21 days’ salary for each of the years of your service.
  • If you have served for more than five years, your gratuity pay is equal to your full 21 days’ salary for each of the years of your service.

Also Read: Disciplinary Rules and Penalties for Workers as per UAE Labour Law

Are deductions allowed in your gratuity pay?

Yes, deductions are allowed in your gratuity pay. If you owe money to your employer, the amount may be deducted from the amount of your gratuity pay. This is under Article 135 of the Labor Law of the UAE.

Can you be disqualified from receiving your gratuity pay?

Yes, you can be disqualified for two reasons: 1) you are dismissed from your service for any of the reasons specified in Article 120, for instance, adopting a false identity, forging signatures, and do on; and 2) leaving your job without giving notice to your employer.

How can you claim your gratuity pay if you are outside of the UAE?

In case you lost your job in the UAE while you are in your home country and you are unable to return because of emergency circumstances such as a health crisis, you can still claim your gratuity pay. Since these are the instances that can make your contract terminated, in addition to employers laying off their employees, you are entitled to claim your benefits by writing a written request to your employer. This request should state that you are requesting to transfer your end-of-service pay to a bank outside the UAE. The request should likewise include the details of your bank and how much is the amount to be deposited.

Final Thoughts

Gratuity pay is essential for workers in the UAE as this serves as your reward for working abroad and serving your employee for more than a year. Your location should not hinder your entitlement to receive this benefit. Before you submit a written request, make sure that you have the calculation already so you and your employer can work on the difference before depositing the money to your bank account. It also helps if you will communicate constantly with your employer regarding this matter.

Disclaimer: UAELabour.org is an informational site only and should serve as a guide. For updated details and policies, always contact proper authorities for assistance. If you are facing challenges at your work, please contact the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) or previously known as UAE Ministry of Labour for guidance. You may also seek help from a lawyer regarding your case.

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