Workers who lose cases in labour courts will be banned from working in the country for a year, the Ministry of Labour said last night. In a statement published on the ministry's website, Saif al Suwaidi, the acting director of labour affairs, said the move was an attempt to cut the number of malicious cases filed. He said sacked labourers were taking advantage of the rule that currently allows them a temporary work permit while a labour dispute is pending.
At present, if a case is lost, the worker must leave the country, but there is little to prevent him from getting another job and returning almost immediately. The changes mean a worker who has lost his case will not be allowed to work in the UAE again for a year after the verdict. On top of that, he will have to pay court costs and legal fees. A total of 2,658 "higher" disputes - for claims of Dh100,000 (US$27,000) or more - and lower disputes (less than Dh100,000) were registered at the Dubai Labour Courts between January 1 and June 15 this year.
That compares with 2,853 throughout last year, although the number of cases lost by complainants is not known. firstname.lastname@example.org