What Does The New UAE Labour Law Says about Annual Leave?

The new labour law – Federal Decree-Law No. 33 of 2021 on the regulation of labour relations – has updated the regulations for the private sector in the UAE on the computation of Annual LeaveOpens in a new tab..

The new UAE Labour Law – Federal Decree-Law No. 33 of 2021 – has come into effect from February 2, 2022, replacing the current Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 and its amendments

As per the Article 29 of the New Labour Law on Annual Leave:

  1. Without prejudice to the worker’s acquired rights for the period preceding the date of enforcement of the provisions of this Decree-Law, the worker shall be entitled to an annual leave with full wage, of not less than: a. Thirty days for each year of extended service; b. Two days for each month if his service term is more than six months and less than a year; c. A leave for parts of the last year he spent at work if his service is ended before using his annual leave balance.
  2. The part-time worker shall be entitled to an annual leave according to the actual working hours the worker spends working for the employer and its period shall be defined in the employment contract, in accordance with what is stipulated in the Implementing Regulation hereof.
  3. The employer may agree to grant the worker a leave from his annual leave balance during the probationary period, while the worker shall reserve his right to be compensated for the remainder of his annual leave balance in case he does not pass the probationary period.
  4. The worker shall obtain his leave in its entitlement year and the employer may specify the dates of these leaves according to work requirements and in agreement with the worker, or grant them alternately among the establishment’s workers, in order to secure its work progress. e employer shall notify the worker of the specified date for his leave within a sufficient time of not less than a month.
  5. The worker may, with the approval of his employer and in accordance with the applicable regulations at the establishment, carry forward his annual leave balance or days thereof to the following year.
  6. The worker shall be entitled to the wage for the period of his annual leave.
  7. The holidays prescribed by law or by agreement are included in the calculation of the annual leave period if they fall within the annual leave of the worker and they form a part thereof, unless the employment contract or the regulations in force at the establishment provide for anything that is more useful for the worker.
  8. The employer may not prevent the worker from benefiting from his annual leave accrued for more than two years, unless the worker wishes to carry it forward or receive a cash allowance for it, in accordance with the regulations in force at the establishment and the Implementing Regulation hereof.
  9. The worker shall be entitled to a wage for the accrued leave days if he quits the work before using them, regardless of the leave duration, with respect to the period for which he did not obtain his leave. He shall also be entitled to receive leave wage for parts of the year in proportion to the period he spent in work and it shall be calculated according to the basic wage.
  10. The Implementing Regulation hereof defines the rules and conditions for regulating leaves and their compensation.


Human Resource professional and writer.

2 thoughts on “What Does The New UAE Labour Law Says about Annual Leave?

  1. what is the meaning of “The worker shall be entitled to the wage for the period of his annual leave”. Does this mean that all the leave days balance as at 31-01-2022 will be paid on Basic+HRA and from Feb 2022 onwards the newly accrued leave will be paid as per full salary, or All the OLD leave balance + New leave days will be paid as per the full salary when the employee goes on leave.

    1. Hi, I would request you to check with your company and to refer to your company leave policy.

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