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Holidays cut

I am a regular reader of your Legal Clinic column articles. Now I have an issue for which I need advice.

I joined a company and completed my probation period ... after that I requested a day off without pay before Eid. The last working day was on the Sunday before Eid.

This was because I wanted to travel to my home country to participate in a marriage over the Eid holidays. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday were the official holidays — one day for the Standing at Arafat and the other three days for Eid Al Adha.

Now my HR department has told me that they will deduct 5 days salary starting from Sunday to Thursday, because — according to them — the Kuwait Labour Law says that if any employee travels before completion of nine months (9 months) service their salary will deducted for the duration the employees are not on duty. If this is true, please guide me with the relevant Kuwait Labor Law on the issue.

Name withheld
Answer
:We answered this question a couple of times already, the last time being nearly a month ago, but in case you did not read the paper that day, here is the answer again. This company is clearly trying to cheat you out of four days salary because there is no such clause in the Kuwait Labor Law which allows the firm to make the deduction as it is trying to do.

Secondly, the four days official holidays are your own to use as you deem fit and no company has the right to cut the salary for the duration of these holidays. The company can only deduct one day’s salary, for the one-day unpaid leave, and not for the total number of days that you were away.

You were not absent from duty and only left the country over the Eid holidays which were granted to all the employees. The only way you can be declared absent for the duration of the official holidays is if the company had asked you or the other employees not to take off on the Eid holidays and report to work. If this is not the case and the company insists on deducting five days salary, you can file a complaint with the Labor Office in your area.

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