How do I make a Labour complaint in UAE?
The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) is committed to overseeing the implementation of labour rights and settling disputes between two parties in the workplace.
There are specific laws to protect the rights of the employees in the UAE and all the employers and employees must be aware of their rights and responsibilities.
If you are under any of the circumstance below, you may file a complaint or raise your grievance against your employer with MOHRE.
When can an employee file a labour complaint against employer?
Employees have the right to report their employers, upon violation of these stipulations:
- you are terminated unfairly or arbitrary
- you are working for long hours without being paid overtime
- you are demoted unfairly.
- you are working in a unsafe and unsecured environment
- your wages or salary delayed
- you are not given annual leaves and are not allowed to take leave on public holidays.
- you are a pregnant employee is not given maternity leave.
- you are asked to repay employment visa costs.
- Your passport of Emirates ID held by employer
- you are not given gratuity pay at the time of termination of the employment contract, despite working for the required period in the company.
However, there are few steps you need to follow while filing your complaint with MOHRE. Once you file a complaint, the respective department looks into the issue and communicates with both parties and settles the dispute.
How to register your Labour Complaint in UAE?
The process is simple . Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to file a MOHRE complaint. Both employees and employers can raise labour complaint through :
- by calling Ministry’s call centre at 800 84
- MOHRE app
- Website: www.mohre.gov.ae
- by visiting TWAFOUQ (MOHRE Centre)
- Dubai Police (only for Dubai visa holders)
- Through the MOHRE whatsapp service
1. Calling Ministry’s call centre at 800 84:
- The customer care representative will answer your queries and try to handle the complaint.
- If the representative is unable to address your concerns straight away, your complaint will be forwarded to the Department of Complaints and Advice.
- If resolved by the department, the case will be closed.
- If not handled successfully, the person in charge will guide you to file an official complaint, leading to a court case.
MOHRE has introduced a toll-free helpline for workers and employers in the UAE. You can use this helpline to file labor complaints, check the status of existing complaints, and get advice on UAE labor laws. The helpline is available in Arabic, English, and Urdu.
The call center is open from 8 am to 8 pm, Monday to Saturday, but closed on Sundays.
2. MOHRE app:
Both employees and employers can lodge a complaint using the MOHRE mobile app. The process requires you to:
- Download the MOHRE app (Google Play or App Store )
- Create your account to get started : register your details by selecting the categories – Employee, Employer , Domestic worker etc, Choose the option.
- From the drop down option click on ‘Complaint’.
- Click on ‘Apply for services’.
- You will be redirected to a user verification page. Kindly verify your contact details by filling your mobile number to receive OTP.
- You will receive OTP through text message
- You will see two user types: employee and employer or PRO. Choose the category you fall in.
- Enter the User registration details : Emirates ID, Labour Card Number, Passport details and Date of Birth
- Select Complaint Type and Add complaint request details and submit.
3. MOHRE Website:
- Visit the MOHRE website: www.mohre.gov.ae
- Select the option to ‘Register Labour Complaints’.
- Click on the ‘Start Service’.
- Select ‘Complaint Type’.
- Enter Applicant Type, Work Permit Number and Unified Number.
- Add Complaint Request Details.
- Submit the information provided.
Once your application has been submitted, you will receive a call from a legal advisor working for the Twa-fouq centre who will try to initially find an amicable solution to the issue.
4. Visiting TWA-FOUQ (MOHRE Centre)
Twa-fouq centres are service centres licensed by MOHRE and receive labour complaints submitted by an employer or an employee. The centre performs initial investigation about complaints and provides recommendations to MOHRE for approval and to take a decision on the dispute resolution or refers the case to the judiciary.
It also provides legal advice and replies to inquiries related to work relations.
Once the complaint request has been submitted Twa-Fouq will send an sms to both parties with a message to mutually discuss the issue over the phone. If the dispute is not solved over the phone, Twa-Fouq will send another sms to both the parties to visit the nearest service center to meet the legal advisor.
If both the parties to agrees to resolve the case, Twa Fouq will ask to clear the debts, dues or final settlement in front of Twa Fouq representative and both will receive sms with message of settlement.
If a resolution is not agreed upon between the relevant parties within two weeks, the request is forwarded to the court.
5. Dubai Police (only for Dubai visa holders)
If you are facing any issue with salary payment, living condition, safety and security of labour accommodation you can also submit your labour complaint through Dubai Police website, Dubai Police Smart app, or by visiting nearest Police centre provided you have a residence visa issued from Dubai.
You would need to provide valid Emirate ID number, active mobile number, email id, company full name registered under licence, complain details.
6. Through the MOHRE whatsapp service
You can also submit your complaint using MOHRE’s new official WhatsApp account. To do so, save the number 600590000 in your phone and initiate a chat with a Ministry representative.
Five important things to remember when filing a labor complaint in the UAE:
Under Ministerial Resolution No. 47 of 2022 about Labor Disputes, workers with labor complaints referred to the court should:
- File your complaint early: According to UAE Labor Law, you should report violations as soon as possible. Claims can’t be considered after one year from the date of the violation.Register the complaint with the court within 14 days of referral.
- You can work for another employer during the case: If your case is in court, you can apply for a temporary work permit from MOHRE to work for a different employer until your case is resolved.
- Request to cancel the original work permit within 14 days of the final judgment in case of job termination.
- If the complaint results in the worker stopping work, the work permit cancels after 6 months from the complaint date.
- No fees for filing a complaint: Workers and their heirs are exempt from paying judicial fees for claims under Dh100,000.
If you need to contact MOHRE outside of the call center’s hours, you can do so through their mobile app or WhatsApp account 600590000.
A case memo outlining a summary of the dispute is also provided to the court by the Twa-fouq service centre. This includes comments from the labour department and evidence from both parties.
The competent court will, within three days from the date of receiving the request, fix a hearing for the claim and notify the two parties.
The court may request a representative from the department of labour to appear and explain the contents of the memo submitted by it. Subsequently, a judgement will be made on the matter.
What is the MOHRE complaint number?
The UAE MOHRE complaint number is the reference number given to individuals who file complaints against their employer or a company.
Whether you use the mobile app, official website or opt to visit the service center there is always a reference number given to you. With this number, you can check the status of your complaint.
How to check the Status of Labour complaint in MOHRE?
Here is how you can check the MOHRE complaint status:
- Visit the MOHRE website: Log into the page. Provide your reference number, your complaint status will be shown
- Using MOHRE mobile app: Log into the page. Click on service enquiry and fill in your transaction number (MB number) in box provided, your complaint status will be shown.
- Call MOHRE 800 48, and the service centre representative will guide you on the steps to be taken.
What are the court fees for filing a Labour case?
There is no fee charged from an employee for this process. However, please note for claims up to Dh100,000, the employee does not need to pay the court fees. For claims over Dh100,000, the employee needs to pay five per cent from the claim amount, with a maximum fee of Dh20,000.
How can Free Zone Employees File a labour complaint?
For employees working in UAE free zones, it’s important to understand that they have different regulations compared to those in mainland companies.
Each free zone, like Dubai International Financial Centre or Dubai Media City, has its own set of rules and laws. However, the employment contracts in these free zones must align with the UAE’s Labor Law to ensure certain rights are protected.
Free zone employees are sponsored by the free zone authority, not their employer. If a free zone worker faces labor rights violations by their employer, they can file a complaint with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE). But, there’s a separate online service portal for free zone employees on MOHRE’s website compared to mainland workers.
Here’s a simple step-by-step guide on how to file a labor complaint if you work in a UAE free zone:
- Visit this link: https://www.mohre.gov.ae/en/our-services/register-free-zone-complaint.aspx
- Click on “start service.”
- Provide your full name and mobile number. You’ll receive a verification code on your phone. Enter the code on the website and select whether you’re an employee or a company.
- You’ll be directed to an application form.
- Fill in the following information:
- Name of the company or employer you’re filing the complaint against.
- Employee’s mobile number
- Employer’s mobile number
- Free zone name
- Passport number
- Date of the referral letter issued by the free zone
- Location of the free zone labor office
- Upload your referral letter and Emirates ID copy into the application.
- Click “Register Complaint.” You’ll receive an SMS confirming the status of your application.
Filing a complaint online in a free zone is free of charge.
Frequently Asked Questions FAQs on Filing a Labour Complaint in UAE
How do I raise a Labour complaint?
You can raise your labour complaint by calling Ministry’s call centre at 800 84
by visiting TWAFOUQ (MOHRE Centre)
Dubai Police (only for Dubai visa holders)
Through the MOHRE whatsapp service
What is the labour complaint toll free number in UAE?
Both employees and employers in the UAE can now access the Labor Claims and Advisory call center by dialing the toll-free number 800 84 to address any labor-related grievances or seek legal guidance.
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