Provisions for safety and health of workers
According to Clause 13 of Article 13 of Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021 on the Regulation of Labour Relations in the Private Sector (the UAE labour law) (PDF, 2 MB) the employer is obliged to provide a safe and appropriate work environment to his employees. Both, the employer and the employee must comply with all controls and procedures issued by Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) and other competent authorities of the country regarding occupational health and safety.
Prevention of injuries and occupational hazards
This section deals with employer and worker obligations to prevent injuries and occupational hazards.
It would be the employer’s obligation to:
- provide the necessary means of protecting workers from the hazards of occupational injuries and diseases that may occur during work
- place instructional boards with awareness materials
- provide appropriate training to workers to avoid such risks
- conduct periodic evaluations to ensure that all parties to the employment contract, comply with and meet the requirements of occupational health and safety.
- It would be the worker’s obligation to: use the protective equipment and clothing provided to him
- comply with all instructions given by the employer to protect him from danger
- refrain from any action contrary to these instructions
- follow orders and instructions relating to occupational health and safety
- undertake to protect what is in his possession.
Workers must not commit any act which violate the aforementioned instructions or pose harm to health and safety of all.
Read more about workers’ safety, protection and health care on the following links:
Guidelines for reporting work injuries and occupational diseases
Channels for reporting work injuries and occupational diseases
Firms report work-related injuries and occupational diseases to Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE). Reporting can be done through any of the following channels:
In case of an injury or death at workplace, the employer/s must inform MoHRE within 48 hours from the incident.
Obligations of the employer
Establishments with 50 or more workers must have a special system for monitoring work injuries and occupational diseases. The system should include:
- a record of work-related injuries and occupational diseases
- necessary preventive tools and training programmes for workers engaged in high-risk activities
- an inventory of all activities that are dangerous to the health and safety of workers
- number of workers performing hazardous jobs
- a mechanism to:
- carry out health examination of workers engaged in hazardous activities
- report incidents of work injuries and occupational diseases within the firms
- investigate incidents of work injuries, occupational diseases and necessary measures to protect other workers
- ·obtain a report from the competent medical committees that shows the level of disability in the event of a work injury or occupational diseases
- a log for periodic medical examination of workers
- a record of workers exposed to occupational hazards for a period of not less than 5 years after the termination of their service.
Additionally, the employer should:
- provide the worker with proof of his employment in the firm performing such a hazardous job
- inform the medical authorities as soon as becoming aware of the occurrence of a work injury or suspecting an occupational disease
- report immediately to the competent police station, in the geographic location of the firm, any work injury or occupational disease.
Compensation for work injuries and occupational diseases
An employer is obligated to treat and compensate an injured worker for any work-related illness or injury. The compensation is paid according to the provisions stipulated in Article 37 of Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021 Regarding the Regulation of Employment Relationship, and its amendments (PDF, 918 KB).
The worker receives compensation within a maximum period of 10 days after the release of the medical report indicating the percentage of disability as illustrated in the schedules annexed to Cabinet Resolution No. 33 of 2022 Concerning Work injuries and Occupational diseases (PDF, 478 KB).
Amount of compensation
If the work injury or illness results in the worker’s death, the compensation is equal to the basic wage of the worker for 24 months, provided that the compensation amount is not less than AED 18,000 (eighteen thousand) and not more than AED 200,000 (two hundred thousand). The compensation amount is calculated according to the basic wage that the worker was receiving before his death. The compensation is paid to his/her legal heirs, or as the worker otherwise specifies.
If a worker sustains a permanent complete disability, the compensation will be equal to the amount due in the event of death.
If a worker sustains a partial disability, he/she will be compensated with a portion of the value of permanent complete disability.
For more information about reporting and handling work injuries and occupational diseases, refer to the Ministerial Resolution No. 657 of 2022 on Rules and Guidelines to Deal with Work Injuries and Occupational Diseases (PDF, 733 KB).
Mid-day break rule for workers under the sun
Construction and industrial workers are not permitted to work during the hottest hours of the day during the summer. According to Ministerial Resolution No. 44 of 2022, all work performed directly under the sun and in open places shall not be allowed between the peak hours of 12.30 pm and 3 pm from 15 June to 15 September every year.
Employers are required to provide shaded areas for their workers to rest during rest periods. Refer to Article 11 of Administrative Decision No. 19 of 2023 Relating to Occupational Safety and Health and Labour Accommodation (PDF, 334 KB).
Read more about safety in heat.
Every industrial establishment, and all establishments operating in the construction sector employing100 workers or more, must appoint an Occupational Health and Safety Officer who is technically qualified for this purpose. The HSO will carry out the tasks related to the prevention of different categories of hazards and supervise the implementation of the relevant provisions in this regard.
For more information on the provisions of the occupational health and safety officer, see Article 2 of Ministerial Resolution No. 44 of 2022 and the responsibilities of the health and safety officer in Administrative Decision No. 19 of 2023 Relating to Occupational Safety and Health and Labour Accommodation (PDF, 334 KB).
Both the emirates of Abu Dhabi and Dubai mandate health insurance for all public and private sector employees, whether they are citizens or residents. The Government of Sharjah provides health insurance for all its employees and retirees. The government of Ajman also provides health insurance for all its employees. Read the section on health insurance.
At least once every six months, employers have to assign at least one physician to examine thoroughly the employees who are exposed to the possibility of contracting one of the occupational diseases. The results of such examination should be recorded on the employees' files.
Prohibition of alcohol on work premises
No employer may bring or allow others to bring any kind of alcoholic drinks for consumption on work premises.
* Text provided by MoHRE
Updated on 22 Nov 2023