In a move aimed at improving access to part-time work, Ministerial Resolution No. 31 of 2018 went into effect recently and introduced, for the first time in onshore (non-free zone) United Arab Emirates (UAE), prorated benefits for certain categories of employees.

Under the new regime, skilled (essentially, white-collar) workers who wish to work part time with two separate employers can now enter into a standard-form part-time employment agreement with the initial sponsoring company (Company A) and then enter into a separate standard-form part-time employment agreement with the secondary company (Company B).

In the past, employees who wished to work part time with two companies had to obtain a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from Company A and apply for a temporary work permit. With the introduction of the new resolution, there is no longer a requirement for a NOC. By entering into a standard-form part-time employment agreement, Company A provides its consent to the employee to work at another company, including a competing business (unless a court order states otherwise). Similarly, in the past, both companies were required to provide the minimum entitlements under the Labor Law (including end-of-service gratuity, annual leave, sick leave, etc.). Now, however, companies may provide benefits to part-time employees on a prorated basis.


The part-time working regime is applicable only to onshore-based (non-free zone) offices. Employers whose offices are based in free zones (with the exception of certain free zones that have their own regulations regarding part-time work) cannot prorate benefits and will still need to provide the minimum benefits under the Labor Law regardless of the number of hours an employee works.

Written by Gordon Barr of Al Tamimi & Co. and Roger James of Ogletree Deakins