A Guide to Filing a Labor Complaint in the UAE

A Guide to Filing a Labor Complaint in the UAE

The Ministry of Manpower and Emiratization (MOHRE), also known as the Ministry of Labor. Is the primary authority for handling these matters. Through MOHRE, you can not only register your labor complaint UAE but also check the status of your labor complaint. Especially, if you are facing problems such as wage arrears or improper passport retention.

In this article we will present you with a simple guide that will highlight how to file and follow up on your labor emiratisation in UAE labor law. Explain what it is, what the laws to follow are and what the right legal assistance for you is. We will show you through the step-by-step process for filing a labor complaint UAE. Including the procedure to follow and the possible outcomes to expect.


In the UAE, private sector employees and employers may contact the Ministry of Human Resources and Development (MOHRE) to file grievances requiring government mediation.

Also, if an employee is dissatisfied with working conditions and requests assistance from MOHRE, he or she may file a complaint with MOHRE. If the employer is not fulfilling its obligations under the employment contract.

Besides, from an employee’s perspective, before filing a labor complaint UAE with the Ministry of Labor, it is important to keep in mind. Some of the provisions of the UAE Labor Law and implementing regulations that affect the labor grievance process.

Know Your Rights under UAE Labor Laws

Know Your Rights under UAE Labor Laws


Before filing an employment- labor complaint UAE. You should be fully aware of your rights as an employee in the UAE. Familiarize yourself with UAE labor laws, which specify the rights and responsibilities of employers and employees emiratisation in UAE. The most important rights:

  • The right to a written employment contract that sets out all terms and conditions, including wages, hours of work and vacation entitlements. Depending on your industry and occupation, not everyone can earn minimum wage. The privilege of working in a safe and healthy environment.
  • Also, to receive a lump sum for an employee in the event of termination of employment, i.e., a retirement allowance based on length of service and last salary. The right to vacation, sick leave and other types of leave. Including pregnancy and maternity leave.

Knowing your rights as an employee will help you know whether you have a valid employment application and what to expect from it.

Key Rights and Protection

  • The Employer of record Dubai and the employee have the right to file a labor complaint UAE within 30 days in case either of them breaches its obligations set forth in the employment contract or violates the provisions of the Decree-Law on the Regulation of Labor Relations and its executive regulations and decisions issued in application thereof.
  • Also, the Ministry shall take all necessary measures to settle individual labor claims within no more than 14 days from the date of filing the claim. If an amicable settlement is not reach, the dispute shall be referred to the relevant labor court.
  • As well, register the labor claim with the competent court no later than 14 days from the date of approval of the referral to the judiciary, must not work for another employer without obtaining a temporary work permit from the Department of Labor.
  • So, in case of termination of the employment relationship between both parties, you must file a request for cancellation of the original work permit within 14 days from the date of Make the final decision during the hiring process.
  • That is why; the worker may apply for a temporary work permit with a new employer during the processing of the labor file; an exception is made for a worker who has been declare absent by his or her employer by filing a “Report of Unforeseen Abandonment of Work”.

Identifying Valid Grounds for a Labor Complaint

The United Arab Emirates, known for its internationalism, ensures the safety and rights of its diverse workforce through strict regulations. However, for those who may be intimidate by dense legal terminologies or simply short on time, here’s an expanded rundown:

  • It is very frustrating not to receive your hard-earned money on time. Paying unnecessary late fees or not receiving payment in an emergency: these situations are valid reasons to file a complaint.
  • Besides, everyone deserves a break. If you are not being grante your rightful annual leaves, or if your requests for leaves during national public holidays are being ignore or denie, it is essential to voice this concern.
  • So, a conducive and safe workspace is fundamental. If you ever find yourself in a situation where your work environment is hazardous or poses risks to your health and well-being, it is crucial to bring this to the attention of authorities.
  • As well, it is only fair that extra work hours are compensate accordingly.
  • Holding onto personal documents, especially something as vital as a passport, without an individual explicit consent is a blatant violation of ones rights.
  • You are entitle to certain post-employment benefits after dedicate years of service. If you are denie or refuse, your reasons for filing a complaint will be fully valid.
  • There are costs associated with working abroad, including visa costs.
  • All pregnant women are legally entitled to maternity leave. If this right is being infringed upon or you’re denied the necessary leave, it is a clear violation.
  • UAE law stipulates the maximum number of daily work hours, typically 8 or 9.

Common Workplace Violations

The UAE Labor Law (Federal Law No. 20 of 2023) includes several clauses regulating workers’ rights. Employees have the right to report their employers in case of non-compliance with these stipulations:

  • The unsafe environment of their workplace.
  • Wage claims or money problems
  • Absence of annual leave, weekends or public holidays
  • Claim for bonuses: if bonuses are not given after resignation
  • Wage arrears
  • Claim for overtime
  • Claim for dismissal
  • Lack of maternity leave
  • Lack of adequate accommodation
  • Passport or identity card confiscated by the employer
  • Claim against health insurance

After you file the labor complaint UAE against your boss or employer, the company or your employer may fire you from your job. And you may have to resign in order to file a claim against your employer. So, after you file the labor complaint, you will not be able to work in any other office, company or workplace. You will have to wait until the case is closed.

Initiating the Labor Complaint Process


There are specific laws to protect the rights of employees in the UAE and all employers and employees should be aware of their rights and responsibilities. Besides, if you find yourself in any of the circumstances below, you can file a labor complaint UAE or raise your grievance against your employer with MOHRE in the following ways:

By calling the MOHRE call center at 800 84:

  • The customer service representative will answer your questions and attempt to process the complaint.
  • Also, if the representative is unable to resolve your concerns immediately, your complaint will be referred to the Complaints and Counseling Department.
  • So, if the department resolves it, the case will be closed.

MOHRE app:

  • Download the app.
  • Create your account to get started: register your details by selecting the categories – Employee, Entrepreneur, Domestic Worker, etc., choose the option.
  • In the drop-down menu, click on “Complaint”.
  • Click on “Request services”.
  • Verify your contact details by entering your mobile number to receive the OTP.
  • You will receive the password via text message.
  • Going to see two user types: employee and employer or PRO. Choose the category you are in.
  • Enter the user registration details: Emirates ID, work card number, passport details and date of birth.
  • Select the Claim Type and Add claim request details and submit it.

MOHRE Website:

  • Visit the MOHRE website: in a new tab.
  • Then, Select the “Register Labor Claims” option.
  • Click on ‘Start Service’.
  • Select ‘Complaint Type’.
  • Enter the Claimant Type, Work Permit Number and Unified Number.
  • Add the details of the claim request.
  • Submit the information provided.
  • Once your request has been submitted, you will receive a call from a legal advisor working.

Documentation Checklist

  • Name
  • The name the company or employer filing the complaint.
  • Employee’s mobile number
  • Employer’s mobile number
  • Free zone name
  • Nationality
  • Passport number
  • Date of issue of the letter of recommendation for the free zone
  • Location of the free zone labor office

Interacting with the Labor Authorities

Hiring an attorney who specializes in employment law can provide valuable guidance and support throughout the claim resolution process. An attorney can help you understand your rights, assess the strength of your case, and represent your interests during negotiations or court proceedings.

Also, although legal representation is not mandatory. It can significantly increase your chances of achieving a favorable outcome in your claim. Many parties seek professional legal advice if they are not fluent in Arabic or unfamiliar with Arabic legal terminology.

So, consulting a law firm is also helpful in gathering and analyzing all evidentiary documentation, as well as changing or altering positions as the claim progresses. Be sure to hire a law firm that has positive experience in handling cases similar to the one you are about to suffer. Only Emirati lawyers and qualified lawyers from other Arab countries have access to the courts.

Timelines and Procedures

A memorandum summarizing the litigation will be provided to the court. It shall include the comments of the labor department and the evidence of both parties. Also, the competent court shall, within three days from the date of receipt of the request. Set a hearing for the lawsuit and notify both parties.

Besides, the court may request the appearance of a representative of the labor department to explain the contents of the note submitted by the latter. Subsequently, judgment shall be rendered on the matter.

Legal Recourse and Escalation

According to Ministerial Resolution No. 47 of 2022 on Labor Disputes, workers with labor complaints referred to the court should:

  • File the complaint as soon as possible: according to the UAE Labor Law, you should report violations as soon as possible. Complaints cannot be considered after one year from the date of the violation. Notify the court within 14 days of filing the complaint.
  • Besides, you may be able to work for another employer while your case is pending. If your case is pending in court, you may apply to the Department of Health for temporary permission to work for another employer until your case is resolved. Apply to cancel the original work permit within 14 days of the final judgment in case of termination of employment.
  • Also, if the complaint results in the worker ceasing to work, the work permit is cancelled after 6 months from the date of the complaint.
  • Workers and their heirs are exempt from paying court fees for claims of less than 100,000 dirhams.

Legal Assistance and Representation

As well, you can see from the above, going to the Dubai Labor Courts can be a very cost-effective way to go. However, this does not eliminate the difficulties arising from legal issues. That is why you need to know more about us. If you are an entrepreneur, do not miss this opportunity. Our legal team can help you with all your legal problems. Visit us for the best corporate legal services in UAE.

So, if you need more help or information about Dubai Labor Court and how to file a labor complaint, one of our experts will contact you to answer all your questions.


Filing a labor complaint UAE can be a difficult process, but protecting your rights as an employee is very important to make permanent hiring solutions. Before filing a complaint, you should know your rights. Attempt to resolve the dispute amicably, and prepare a well-documented complaint with evidence.

MOHRE labor contract can make a decision, which may include financial compensation, reinstatement or other appropriate action. It is important to note that ADR decisions are final and binding and must be respected by both parties.

By following the above steps, you will ensure that your employment application is submitted correctly and increase your chances of receiving a positive outcome. If you want to know more about labor complaint UAE and other articles of interest we invite you to visit our website here. Or, if you want to contract our services you can contact us now.


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