Qatar Labour Law: Important Things To Know (2023)

In 2015, Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani issued law no 21 for 2015 regarding Regulation of the Expatriates Entry, Departure, and Residence. Here are the explanations for the main articles in the law.

Here are some extracts about the significant changes to Qatar Labour Law with the official wordings used in each legal article.

Qatar Labour Law: Introduction

The employment relationship in Qatar is principally governed by the provisions of Law No. 14 of 2004 Regulating Employment.

The Qatar Labour Law ratifies the minimum standard of rights and benefits for employees to which employers must adhere and the obligations of employees working in Qatar. Law No. 21 of 2015 detailing the foreign national’s entry, exit, and residency regulations has been in force since 2016.

Note that the term ‘recruiter’ has been used instead of the sponsor but refers to the person or company who hired the worker.

Article 7 – Leaving Qatar

  • If an expatriate worker wants to leave Qatar, he or his recruiter should report to the concerned department at the Ministry of Interior at least three working days before the exit date.
  • The expatriate worker may exit the country as soon as the recruiter informs the concerned department about his approval to let the worker go on leave.
  • If the recruiter or the concerned department objects, the expatriate worker can resort to the expatriate exit petitions committee.
  • In case of an emergency for the expatriate worker, the committee shall decide on his exit permit request within three workdays.
  • The Minister of Interior shall issue a decision to form such a committee and specify its jurisdictions and the procedures to be followed, in addition to its work mechanism.

Article 8 – Custody of Passport

  • The recruiter shall hand over the passport of the expatriate worker or his travel document to him upon finalizing the necessary procedures for issuing his residency permit or renewal.
  • The worker can request in writing to the recruiter to keep for him such documents. But these should be handed over when requested by the expatriate worker.
  • The residency permit shall be done or renewed within 90 days of its expiry date.

Article 12 – Residency Permits for Family

  • The concerned department at the Ministry of Interior can grant residency permits for the spouse, undergraduate sons of up to 25 years old and unmarried daughters of the expatriate worker.
  • However, the Minister of Interior or his deputy may exempt such age conditions.
  • Also, the expatriate worker can be granted a residency permit for his parent through approval by the Minister of Interior or whom he may ever delegate when such request is justified.
  • However, the conditions for granting such residency approvals shall be regulated by a decision of the Minister of Interior.

Article 14 – Staying Out of Qatar

Expatriate workers who have residency in the country shall not stay outside the country for more than six months unless they get a permit to return to the country before the passage of one year on their exit, on the condition the expiry date of their residency did not exceed 60 days.

However, the Minister of Interior or his deputy may overlook such designated periods.

Qatar Labour Law

Article 16 – Designated Works Only

Expatriate residents shall only use their residency permits for the designated licensed purpose. The worker cannot quit work at his recruiter or work at another entity without prior authorization.

Article 17 – Responsible Parties for Each Visa

Those responsible for the residency of expatriates are as follows:

  • the employer for the expatriate workers
  • the family head for his family members in the country
  • the host for those on a visit visa
  • the concerned entities in the country for the expatriate coming to the country for other purposes

Article 19 – Notification About Workers Who Quit

The recruiter shall notify the concerned department within 14 days about the expatriate workers who quit working for him or his refusal to leave the country after the expiry or cancellation of his residency permit within the legal period or otherwise the expiry of his visit visa or the purpose for which he entered the country.

  • The recruiter shall bear all the expenses of repatriating the expatriate worker.
  • If the worker was working for other than his recruiter, such entity or person should pay the cost of repatriation.
  • In case of the death of the expatriate worker, the recruiter shall pay all the costs of burying the body at the designated cemetery in the country.
  • Yet, if any of the deceased person’s legal inheritors requested the body’s repatriation, the recruiter shall pay all the costs accordingly.

Article 20 – Transfer of Jobs

Upon the employer’s approval, the concerned department at the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, the expatriate worker may transfer to another employer before the expiry date of his work contract.

The expatriate worker may, upon the approval of the concerned department at the MOI and the MOLSA, transfer to another employer :

Upon the expiration of his work contract (if the contract is for a fixed period)
OR after the passage of five years on his work with the employer (if the contract is open)
OR upon the death of the recruiter
OR upon the end of the company for any reason

Article 22 – Litigation Between Workers and Recruiter

The Minister of Interior or his deputy may approve the temporary transfer of the expatriate worker to another employer in case of litigation between the worker and his recruiter, on the approval of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

Also, the Minister of Interior may grant the expatriate workers to another employer if the recruiter abuses his rights.

Article 26 – Four Year Ban in Case of Punishment

If the worker was fired as a punitive measure and did not appeal before the concerned court or his appeal was ultimately rejected, he shall not be permitted to return to the country before the passage of four years on his departure.

Also, those expatriate workers who were repatriated upon a court verdict cannot come back to the country unless they got approved by a decision of the Minister of Interior.

Article 38 – Penalties for Violations

Regarding the penalties for related violations, article 38 stipulates the recruiters or employers who let those recruited by their work at other employers without the approval of the concerned department shall get a jail sentence of no more than three years and a fine of no more than QR500,000 or any of these penalties.

The same applies to the employers who hire expatriate workers not recruited by them without obtaining prior authorization.

However, in case of reconciliation before the resolution of the legal case, the violator may pay a sum of QR 12,000 subject to the approval of the Minister of Interior or his deputy according to the set regulations.

FAQ on Qatar Labour Law

How many months can an expatriate resident stay out of Qatar?

Expatriate workers who have residency in Qatar shall not stay outside the country for more than six months, or they must get a return permit.

Can I work for someone other than my employer?

Expatriate residents cannot work at another entity without prior authorization.

Can my employer ban me from entering Qatar?

If the worker was fired as a punishment and did not appeal before the concerned court or his appeal was rejected, he shall not be permitted to return for four years.

Can my employer keep custody of my passport?

No, The employer has to hand over the passport to the worker upon finalizing the necessary procedures of issuing his residency permit or its renewal.

What are the conditions to change jobs in Qatar?

An expatriate can change jobs after completing the contract period (for a fixed contract) or five years (for an open contract). Otherwise, he needs NOC from his employer.

Related Articles:

  1. How To Calculate End of Service Gratuity in Qatar
  2. How to Change Job in Qatar Without NOC
  3. Wage Protection System WPS Qatar: Complete Guide
  4. Qatar Freelance Visa: Legal Things To Know

Copyright © – Unauthorized reproduction of this article in any language is prohibited.

Share This With Someone Who Needs It

117 thoughts on “Qatar Labour Law: Important Things To Know (2023)”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Sir it is my bad luck while I left Qatar navy after granting emergency leave due to road accident of my son and during leave I also got sick and not return to Qatar with in six months and now I have no way to whom I told for solving of my problem

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Sher Nawas, Please speak with your employer. If your employer is willing to take you back, then can do it even if you stay out for 6 months.

    I am rommel, i want to ask if can i file resignation in my company during my probation period, my 3months here in qatar is december 13 2022. I want to find another job
    Because my boss is passed away last november 26 2022.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Rommel, You can apply for a change of sponsor (if you get a new job). Note that your old company may ask your new company to share some visa expenses as you are resigning during probation.

  3. Hello, assalamualaikum, I am meriam i would like to ask if i go home to my country after my 2yrs contract here in my private employer , can i apply or come back again here in qatar for another job or company? Hoping you answer my question…

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Ana, If your employer cancels your visa and there are no legal issues (or complaints), you can come back on new visa.

  4. hello i am ann i want to ask if i violate any law here i qatar.i do mistake 1 time i go out at 12 in the night then i come back morning i did not ask permission.can my madam make a complain against me,and when i take my salary my madam cut 460qr she tell after to weeks i go police to make interview.only that i did i not do anything wrong..what can she file against me,do i have the chance to be deported or blocklisted or go to jail?we dont have day off here we dont have any papers like passport or id.and my contract will be finish this febuary

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Antonette, If your employer has any complaint against you she can either file a police case (if it is a serious offence) or cancel your visa and send you back to your home country. She cannot cut your salary just because you went out without permission.

  5. Hi dohaguides,can i resign and transfer to another company even i started to work 6months ago in my new company?thankyou for answering my question.

  6. Hai sir
    Iam worked for 9 months qatar semi govt company. , has contract of 2 years with company, can i resign now? and come back on another visa if company ban me?
    My Nationality india and my first QID is going to expire on 26/1/22, i want to resign the current job because i dont like to work here in this company .. so if i give the resignation letter to him and go back to india, my current employer can ban me for remaining contract period? and can i come to qatar if another company provide me visa.

    please help me

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Sreejith, The Labour Law covers private companies only. As you are working with a semi-govt company, the rules may be different. Please check with a legal expert.

  7. Hi, we are a cleaning company and I would like to ask if we are eligible to impose a salary deduction as we pay their previous sponsor for their NOC.

    Thank you,

  8. George Villaflores Muñoz

    Sir good evening. I would like to ask how my end year benefits or gratuity being computed if I joined my company August 4, 2016 and will end this coming january 31,2023. Will it be multiplied by 21 days or 28 days? If they will base on 21 days, do I have the right to complain? Where can I ask for help. Please give me some advice. Thanks.

    1. Hi George, As per the new rule, it will be 21 days only (unless 28 days is mentioned in your contract). If nothing is mentioned in the contract it is 21 days.

  9. Salvacion A. Daniel

    Have a good day.
    I am work her as a lady driver for 10 months and i ask my employer that i will go to my country only for 10days to attend my college students graduation because she got latin honors and i will buy my own tickets but they dont want me to go. What can i do please. Thank you

    1. Hi Salvacion, As per the law, your employer cannot stop you from leaving. But it is always better to be on good terms with your employer as they can cancel your visa. Seeking the Labour Department’s help would complicate things.

  10. Hello
    If I resigned from my company and they accepted my resignation letter then they let me to book a ticket by my self then I decided to change traveling date but suddenly employer report me as a run away how will my case solve?

    1. Hi Aisha, Show your new ticket to the employer and request him to cancel the absconding report. If he doesn’t agree you need to visit the Labour department and sort this out. Anyways you need to leave the country if your QID is cancelled.

    2. My contract is 2yrs but i have worked for 9months now and because of the several issues, i got a new job offer letter,i submitted resignation letter attached with my offer letter plus the new company card to my current employer but instead of approving it, he cancelled my QID, what should i do?

      1. Hi Kayima, If the employer has reported you for any misconduct, there may be a labour ban. So you need to check with the Labour department if there is any labour ban. If your QID is cancelled without any labour ban, you can leave the country and return on a new visa.

  11. Hello sir
    I can resign my job without uncompleted my contract period. It’s make any problems or I need to pay any money for employer. Almost 10 months past. My contract period 2 years.

    1. Hi Ahamed, This will depend on what basis you are resigning. If you are resigning due to non-payment of salary or any other issue from the employer, it is OK. You may be liable to compensate if you terminate a contract without any valid reason. Please check with a lawyer.

  12. How can I get the latest version of Qatar Labor law or latest amendments from 2018 because the Labor Law PDF is available in ADLSA website issued in 2018

  13. Hello sir
    I hope your okay
    I’m working in McDonald’s my contract period 2 years it’s not done But almost 10 months past can you make me clear?? I want to back my home country for emergency
    I can request to them emergency exit for my country just for 10 days ??

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Ahamed, Your employer cannot stop you from leaving on an emergency. However, they may not pay you the flight tickets or leave salary if you didn’t complete the required period. This will depend on the company policy. Please speak with your HR Dept.

      1. Hello sir
        Hope your okay

        I requested to the hr department but they did not accepted my emergency exit

        Now what can I do sir ?

        1. Hi Ahamed, Sorry to hear that. You can file a complaint with the Labour department. But keep in mind that may put your current job at risk.

      2. my employer terminated me and paid my my air ticket to leave qatar …but i didnt exit my self now he filled a case aganst me for polive search of misdemeanors of entering and staying in the country illegally…my id is still running four months before it expires…..if i pay my air ticket without reporting to police can i exit qatar….in the system my id is runing

        1. Doha Guides Team

          Hi Rhonnie, If there is an absconding case against you, settling the case and cancelling your QID before you leave is better. There are two issues here: (1) You may be stopped at airport immigration before leaving. (2) Even if you are allowed to leave, it may be difficult for you to come back on another visa. Our advice is to speak to your employer.

  14. Hi sir, how many days need to the sattlement in labour case for painding salary.after labour case file in the court employer give painding salary.

  15. good day sir,i came here yr 2000 and go home 2007 coz im pregnant and had to deliver in Manila but due to the reason that my mother died i was not able to comeback so i stay for 2 yrs and 5 mos before i comeback again in Qatar to work to the same company but when they calculate my gratuity they told me that from 2009 to present only they will not include my previous years i have work with them since 2000 to this right or i need to tell them they have to include my previous years working with them?

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Andres, If you are on a new visa, you cannot claim the gratuity for the old one. It should have been settled in 2007.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Dennis, Yes, you can change your profession if your new employer has an approved visa and you meet the educational qualifications.

  16. Frank Takyi Micah

    Hello sir,
    Hope you’re doing well. Sir can I change my company after my probation period? Because they are giving us bad treatment. Examples bad food, taken away our passports, wrong overtime calculated every month, Discrmination from co-workers because we are from Africa, they failed to give us copies of the contract we signed and sexual harassment.

    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Frank, You can change company if you find a new job. Or you can file a labour complaint if you are mistreated. Please search our website for articles on how to change job and how to file labour complaint.

  17. Hi
    I would like to know why companies bring people in on a visitors visa let them work for a month and then send them home as there work visa hasnt been approved and then they let some stay and do a visa run and is allowed to stay and work on a visitors visa


    1. Doha Guides Team

      Hi Schalk, Yes, it is illegal to work on a visitor visa. The employer, as well as the employee, can be penalised if caught.

  18. Respected sir,
    i hope you are doing well its my wish to know about that i joined qatar company in December and after three months approximately required emergency leave approved and also submit my return ticket to my office HR and after that i am going on vocation afterwards when my vocation finish and last day before inform to company that tommorrow is my flight and same day hr send me whats up message that your job are finish that day . at that time i call to my office and also send whats up messages regarding my job termination but they didnot allow me to come on my ticket date of flight and me also lost my ticket loss.
    can you guide me how to apply complaint against my company i have all proofs and all documents

    please guide to me how to claim and complaint against my company i want to take my all benefits

error: Content is protected !!