Employment contracts in the UAE have become more flexible.

Employment contracts in the UAE have become more flexible.
New labour law

Federal Decree Law 33 of 2021 came into effect on 1 February 2022 and includes a number of provisions seeking to modernize employment relationships. One of the key changes is the introduction of new flexible contracts, providing more options to both employers and employees in structuring their relationship.

More options, greater flexibility for a modern workforce.

Article 7 (Modes of Work) provides for the following new contract types:

A - Full Time

This is the traditional contract which covers a full-time relationship with a single employer.

B - Part Time

Previously, it was not possible for an expatriate to work for multiple employers, but now they are able to work for one or more employers for a specific number of working hours or working days.

C - Temporary

Again, a new contract type which now permits work which is carried out within a specified period of time, or which involves a specific task, and ends with its completion.

In this way, temporary contracts can be based on a fixed duration or linked to a project timeline.

D - Flexible Work

Defined as a work which involves a changing working hours or working days, depending on the workflow and economic and operational changes of the employer. The worker may work for an employer at flexible hours, depending on the circumstances and requirements of work.

This is a very helpful option which is similar to engaging a freelancer, but with the formality of an employment relationship.

E - Other

The law provides for other models to be added in the future.

Overall, a very welcome step and an opportunity to review existing and future employment contracts on renewal or new hires.