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United Arab Emirates - mandatory changes to federal labour law

Who should attend

This course is relevant to all international HR managers, legal counsel, managers and directors with responsibility for people related matters in the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) to ensure they are aware of the new federal employment laws in the UAE introduced last year so as to avoid potential penalties, fines and damage to reputation and/or brand. This course is not relevant to entities in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) or Abu Dhabi General Market (ADGM).


The New Labour Law (33/2021) and its Implementing Regulations (together the “New Laws”) apply to all private sector employers in the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) with the exception of employers within the Dubai International Financial Centre (“DIFC”) and Abu Dhabi Global Market (“ADGM”) financial centre free zones. The New Laws were introduced in February 2022 and represent the biggest change in the employment law landscape in the UAE for 40 years.

This half day course will provide an overview of the current employment law landscape in the UAE with a particular focus on the main changes introduced by the News Laws, including the mandatory requirements in relation to contractual terms and conditions. We will also provide updates in relation to what we have learned from the Courts so far in relation to the implementation, and interpretation, of the New Laws and will compare and contrast the position in the UAE to the legal position in the UK.


  • Context to the introduction of the New Laws
  • Main changes to federal laws
    • measures to protect employees
      • discrimination
      • harassment
      • health & Safety
    • the new forms of, and changes to current provisions in relation to leave from work
      • annual leave
      • sickness absence
      • maternity leave
      • paternity leave
      • study leave
      • bereavement leave
    • new working arrangements
      • part-time
      • flexible working models
    • termination of employment
      • lawful termination
      • unlawful termination
      • end of service gratuity changes
      • compensation
  • Mandatory changes to contracts of employment
    • the abolition of unlimited terms contracts and new requirement for all contracts to be of a fixed term
    • probationary periods
    • notice periods
    • working hours
    • post-termination restrictions and non-compete provisions

Please note the New Laws do not apply in the DIFC or ADGM financial centre free zones and therefore will not be relevant for you if your organisation is in the DIFC or ADGM.

There will be a short comfort break half way through the session.

Cost: £260

All prices are exclusive of VAT

Select a date

virtual online session
14:00 - 17:00 (Local time)

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