UAE: Up to 1 million dirhams fine for recruiting domestic workers without a license

The UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation has emphasized the legal consequences of bringing in domestic workers without the required license.

The ministry stated on the "X" platform that individuals engaging in this practice could face imprisonment for a minimum of one year and fines ranging from AED 200,000 to one million.

Penalties for Unlicensed Recruitment

The federal decree law pertaining to domestic service workers states in Article 27 that those who engage in mediation or mediation-related activities without the necessary authorization face the possibility of jail and fines.

According to the decree law, its executive rules, and related implementing decisions, it is prohibited to engage in the temporary employment of domestic workers within the country without the required license.

Misuse of Electronic Powers

The law also addresses the misuse of electronic powers, specifying that individuals who exploit or misuse such powers to breach work procedures or relationships within the Ministry's systems may face legal consequences.

Responsibilities upon Contract Termination

In the event of a domestic worker's contract termination after the trial period, particularly when recruited directly (not through a domestic labor recruitment office), the worker is responsible for covering the expenses related to returning to their country and any other entitlements to the employer.

If the domestic worker is unable to afford the return costs, it becomes the employer's responsibility to bear these expenses. However, if the worker is recruited through a labor recruitment office, Article 5 of the federal decree law mandates certain obligations for the recruitment office.

This includes covering the expenses of the worker's return, returning any remaining amounts to the employer based on the remaining contract period, and providing housing for the worker should they return to the recruitment office.

Legal Framework for Domestic Worker Recruitment

The Ministry's announcement reinforces the legal framework surrounding the recruitment and employment of domestic workers in the UAE, emphasizing the importance of adhering to licensing requirements and fair contractual practices.

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