News UAE: Questions related to sick leaves for Covid patients,...

UAE: Questions related to sick leaves for Covid patients, close contact, on probation answered

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A new labor law will come into effect starting February 2, 2022, in the UAE that safeguard the legal rights of those diagnosed with Covid-19 or those who got in close contact with someone infected. 

In a Khaleej Times report, Bahriddini Sultan from ADG Legal answered all the queries related to sick leaves for Covid-19 patients and people of close contact, including those on probation. 

Sultan cited the new Federal Decree Law No. (33) of 2021 on the regulation of labor relations (the “New Labor Law”) when asked if the sick leave of an employee who got tested positive for Covid-19 considered as part of their sick leave balance. He said that those employees who have completed their probationary period are eligible for sick leaves and such sick leaves cannot exceed 90 days per year. 

During the 90-day period, the employee is entitled to a full pay for the first 15 days and half for the next 30 days. 

“If the employee had consumed 45 days of sick leaves during that year, then he is not entitled to any further compensation from the employer for the subsequent sick leaves taken during that year,” he told Khaleej Times. 

Health authorities in the country mandated all citizens and residents to isolate themselves for at least 10 days if they caught Covid-19 virus. Sultan said that an employee, who has completed his or her probationary period, should be entitled to claim the 10-day or more, depending on the worker’s symptoms, as part of his or her sick leave entitlement. 

If the employee consumes his or her sick leave entitlement for the whole year, the employer may deduct such additional days from other statutory leaves, such as annual leave. 

Employees under probationary, on the other hand, are not entitled to sick leaves if they catch Covid-19; however, employers may grant him or her unpaid sick leave. 

When exposed to someone infected, Sultan said workers’ first step should inform the employer of the situation, get tested, and work from home if the nature of work allows them to work remotely until the result is received, otherwise, take that day as sick leave. 

“Should the test result confirm that the employee in fact contracted Covid-19, then the employee may agree with the employer to work from home (if the nature of employment and employee’s health condition allows that) until the employee recovers or claim the isolation period as sick leave,” the lawyer said. 

Sultan also explained that under the new law, if a former Covid-19 comes into contact with someone infected, the worker is still eligible for sick leave. 

TGFM
The Global Filipino Magazine is the only Filipino magazine in the UAE that prints on a monthly basis. Its goal is to champion the success of every global Filipino across the globe.

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