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New decree mandates domestic workers to be paid online

27 January 2023
The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) announced that employers will have to register their domestic workers in the Wage Protection System (WPS) in order to take advantage of its innovative solutions, and pay their wages easily.

Together with the UAE Central Bank, the Ministry offers employers the option to pay the wages of their domestic workers electronically through banks, exchange houses or financial institutions, accredited to provide the service by the Central Bank

The Assistant Under-Secretary for Domestic Workers at MoHRE, Abduallah Al Nuaimi said “Enabling the employers to pay the wages of their domestic workers through the Wage Protection System comes under the Ministry’s efforts to develop services that meet the aspirations and needs of the employers, including the national and resident families, in a manner that is consistent with the legislation regulating the work of this category.”

The system will help employers to document the payment of wages to the domestic workers, while also protecting the payment process.

Al Nuaimi further highlighted that WPS helps enhance transparency, stability and protection of both parties to the contractual relationship, apart from ensuring that the Ministry remains constantly updated about data pertaining to wages, thereby reducing labour disputes regarding wages.

It would also help in improving UAE’s reputation as the ideal destination to live and work, by providing a safe working environment for domestic workers.

Employers will have to register in the system, and contract with the financial authorities accredited by the UAE Central Bank to provide the service, so that the wages can be paid electronically.

The service will be applicable to 5 out of 19 professions within the category of domestic workers. These professions include private agricultural engineer, housekeeper, personal tutor, and personal trainer. This excludes domestic worker who has pending labour complaint, or is unemployed or against whom notice of absence from work is registered, or those who are yet to complete 30 days since the start of his employment contract.

The 19 domestic workers’ profession as defined by the Ministry include:

• Housemaid
• Sailor/boatman
• Security guard
• Household shepherd
• Household horse groomer
• Household falcon trainer
• Physical labour worker
• Housekeeper
• Cook
• Nanny/babysitter
• Farmer
• Gardener
• Personal driver
• Private agricultural engineer
• Personal assistant
• Personal nurse
• Personal tutor
• Personal trainer

As per the new decree, a set of guidelines have been provided regarding the roles of recruitment agencies, employers and domestic workers in the UAE.
While announcing the new law, the Ministry emphasized on the importance of employers providing suitable environment for domestic workers. A domestic worker in the UAE can be hired only on securing a license from the MoHRE.

Robin Vinod

Writer/blogger who writes on topics such as travel, real estate, employment and everyday life on GCC countries.

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