Workers’ compensation is like insurance for employees who suffer accidents in the line of work. These include medical benefits and wage replacement. In the UAE, the employment law, the law regulating labor relations, governs employer-employee relations in the private sector. The Dubai labor law outlines the main employment aspects such as working hours, sick and annual leave, maternity leave, public holidays, and termination of employment according to the contract.
Dubai Labor Law Exceptions
Employees have a right for compensation and protection by their employer; however, the labor law does not apply to various workers. For instance, workers, employees of the federal government, municipality officials, and employees of federal officers and those of officials in the local federal departments.
Others in this category include employees and officers employed to work on federal and government projects, armed forces officers, police and security officials as well as domestic workers employed in the private sector. Domestic servants in private residents are covered by Federal Law No. 10/2017.
Workers in the agricultural and pastoral sector are exempt from Dubai labor law. This exemption, however, does not apply to employees working in agricultural organizations who process these products. Permanent employees who operate and repair the machines in these organizations are included in Dubai labor law.
Understanding Workers’ Compensation Benefits
Understanding your rights as an employee is very crucial when working in the UAE. Below is a list of Dubai labor law regarding workers’ compensation for accidents and injuries in the job.
Injuries and Diseases Must be Reported
According to Dubai labor law Article 142, if an employee contracts an ailment or suffers occupational injuries such as total or partial disability, poisoning from lead, mercury, arsenic, and other compounds the employer should report to the police and the labor department. The representative can also report to the department within which the employee worked. Police investigate after the report, record witness statements, interview the representative, and the victim. The investigation confirms whether the accident was deliberate or occupational.
After the Investigations, What’s Next?
When the police complete the investigations, they send a copy of the findings to the labor department and the other to the employer. Dubai labor law 143 allows the labor department to conduct the investigations or to give that task to the police.
Employer Pays for Occupational Injuries/Diseases
Article 144 provides that the employer should pay the workers’ medical bills, whether in a private or public hospital if the employee suffers occupational injuries/diseases. The employer is required to handle the hospital bills until the worker recovers or is proven disabled. In the case of disability, the employer should pay all the transportation costs during the treatment of the worker. If your employer refuses to follow these stipulations, you can visit a corporate lawyer Dubai expert to help you build a case.
After treatment, the doctor should deliver a report to the employer and worker. This outlines the type of injury, date of occurrence, the extent of the injury/disease and how much it is work-related as well as the length of treatment. According to Dubai law Article 147, this report also says whether the worker sustained partial/permanent disability and the extent and if the worker can resume his duties.
Compensation to the Family
Article 149 requires the employer to compensate the family of the worker in case of death. The family should receive 24 months compensation equal to the worker’s pay if the amount is not less than 18,000 Dirhams and not more than 35,000 Dirhams. This amount is calculated regarding the worker’s last wages before his demise.
Compensation for Occupational Injuries
Dubai labor law Article 150 states that in case an occupational injury/disease partially disables the employee, permanently the worker is to be compensated. The compensation is calculated by multiplying the value of death compensation, as outlined above.
Article 153 of the Dubai labor law stipulates that the employee will not be compensated if he deliberately caused the injuries or disability. The police or the labor department investigations reveal whether the disability was occupational or not.
If the injury was incurred to obtain sick leave or compensation, or if the employee was under drug and substance abuse, he will not get any benefits. If the worker deliberately breaches safety instructions or if the disability/injury is as a result of deliberate misconduct, compensation is withdrawn. Also, if the employee refuses to undergo medical tests and treatment, compensation claims do not stand.
When you work in the UAE, you should be aware of the labor laws that govern you. Workers’ compensation benefits apply to all employees in the private sector. As a worker, you are entitled to compensation in case of occupational injuries/diseases. Your employer pays all the treatment costs if the injuries are not deliberate. In case of death, your family gets compensation for 24 months. Remember that refusing treatment or medical tests means that you won’t get any benefits.