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UAE Labour Law: Are you entitled to Ramadan hours?

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It’s a topic that comes up year after year – should you get reduced hours during Ramadan? Many people aren’t clear on the rules and whether they are different for fasting and non-fasting employees, so to help make things easy, we asked Aqsa Khan, an employment law specialist and legal consultant in the UAE and UK from James Berry & Associates, to answer some of the most common questions.

What are the working hours during Ramadan?
According to Aqsa, this falls under Article 65 of the UAE Federal Law. “The usual maximum working hours for employees is eight hours per day. During Ramadan, these are to be reduced to six hours per day.”

Can employees choose when to take their reduced hours?
“The Federal Law does not prescribe when an employee should take their reduced hours.  However, most employers will have their own policies regarding this aspect. Therefore, some employers may specifically allow their employees to begin work late and to finish later in the day.”

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