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06 February 2019
A new arm has been added to the Abu Dhabi courts to resolve employment disputes, which is designed to speed up the process of litigating labour-related matters.
In collaboration with the courts, the Abu Dhabi Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation launched a summary court in January 2019 to complement the One Day Labour Court which was launched in October 2017.
Employees must first bring their case to the Twa Fouq Centre, managed by the ministry, which seeks to resolve complaints between employers and employees without going to court.
If a resolution is unachievable, the case can be referred to the summary court where it will be heard immediately by a judge after it is registered. If no further legal argument is required, the summary court judge can give an immediate verdict. More complex cases are referred to the One Day Labour Court.
The summary court can deal with issues relating to:
No court fees are payable at the summary court or the One Day Labour Court.
The UAE authorities have been developing HR and workplace relation laws for the past few years. It is encouraging to see that in addition to developing the legislation, the authorities are now considering ways of improving access to the courts and ultimately access to justice.
Employment disputes in the United Arab Emirates can be complex and it is important to note that this fast-track court system is designed to consider straightforward disputes only (eg, the retention of passports, health insurance and work visas). These matters are not high value in nature but can be important to the parties involved. It is encouraging to see this development in the UAE employment law regime and the continued efforts by the authorities to consult on and prioritise the development of employment relations and employment disputes.
For further information on this topic please contact Luke Tapp or Ruth Stephen at Pinsent Masons LLP by telephone (+971 4 373 9700) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com). The Pinsent Masons website can be accessed at www.pinsentmasons.com.
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