I have been working with a local supermarket as a cashier from Nov 23, 2013. My current residency renewed for 2 years from Dec 2, 2015 to Nov 28, 2017.
My salary was KD 112 and KD 124 from April 2016. I would like to resign due to family reasons with a 3-month notice period.
As per resignation, my last work date will be July 10, 2016.
During my discussion with the HR Department, they informed me about the following. I want to clarify these points.
1. I have to pay back the cost of 2 years residency renewal KD 134.000 as compensation. Is this required and do I have to pay back this amount as per Kuwait law?
2. The supermarket only provides vacation after 2 years. I was on vacation for 60 days after 2 years from 16th December 2015 to 16th February 2016. But I got only 1 months vacation salary. They informed that I am eligible for 1 month only. Is this correct? Am I entitled to 2 months vacation salary?
3. Am I entitled to the balance of annual leave ?
4. In case of any issues, whom do I have to contact in Shoon (Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor) and what do I have to do?
Answer: You have not told us whether you were hired from abroad or whether you transferred to this company locally from another company. These points have a lot of bearing on our answer. We say this because the compensation issue only comes into play if you were hired from abroad and had a fixed-period contract. We will, however, try to answer your questions from all angles so that all your doubts are cleared.
Judging from the fact that the company is only asking you to pay back the fees involved in the renewal of residence and not asking for any other compensation, it is evident that you don’t have a fixed-period contract with your company which makes things very easy for you and also helps us give you a much clearer answer.
The company is responsible to pay for the renewal of residence and nowhere does the Kuwait Labor Law even remotely suggest that the fees for this purpose have to be paid back — by the worker — to the employer if he resigns from his job.
Yes, the company can refuse to give the employee a release if he was hired from abroad but can’t make him pay (the residence fees) the money spent just because he resigned. Now, talking about your second question, on the issue of paid annual leave and the payment in this regard we need to have a look at Articles Article 70 to 73 of the Kuwait Labor Law enacted on Feb 20, 2010.
Article 70 says “The worker shall be entitled to a 30-day paid annual leave. However, the worker shall not be entitled to a leave for the first year of service except after 9 months of service for the employer. “Official holidays and sick leaves during the year shall not be counted as annual leave. The worker shall be entitled to a leave for the fractions of the year in proportion with the period he spent in actual service, even the first year of service.”
Article 71 stresses “The worker shall be paid for his annual leave before he proceeds on this leave.” Article 72 lays out that “The employer shall have the right to determine the date of the annual leave and divide such leave after the first 14 days thereof, with the consent of the worker. “The worker shall have the right to accumulate his leave entitlements provided these do not exceed two years and he shall be entitled to take his accumulated leave all at once subject to the approval of the employer.
“The annual leave can be accumulated for more than two years with the consent of both the parties.” And lastly, Article 73 states that “Without prejudice to the provisions of Articles 70 and 71, the worker shall be entitled to a cash consideration for all his accumulated leaves on the expiry of his contract.” If you and your company take a close look at the above articles you will find them self-explanatory.
In spite of this fact we will try to make things very clear for you.
First of all you are entitled to 30 days paid leave every year. This are 30 working days, not including the weekly off days or official holidays that fall within these days. It means that you also get paid, for this leave, for 30 working days and not just one month’s salary.
For example, if your monthly salary is KD 300 per month, these KD 300 must be divided by 26 and multiplied by 30. As a result you would be entitled to KD 346 for the annual leave.
All our readers can work out their annual leave payment in this way.
Now on the question of you getting 30 days leave after two years. The company is totally wrong in this regard. First of all the company can only accumulate two years leave “with your consent” and after two years it has to give you 60 days leave.
Even in this case your salary has to be divided by 26 and multiplied by 60. So, again if you have a salary of KD 300, your total entitlement for the 60 days would work out to be KD 692 and not KD 600. This is a general working for all employees in the private sector.
Now coming specifically to your case, as you will be leaving the company after 2 years and 7-1/2 months service you are not entitled to any indemnity as you are resigning with a service of less than three years but the total leave for the period should be 78.75 days (paid days, not including weekly offs or holidays falling within this period).
So, in this case your actual salary is KD 124 (the last salary is counted for calculation of the balance of leave), this should be divided by 26 and multiplied by 78.75 days = KD 375.500.
Now if you received only one month’s salary when you last went on leave, minus KD 112 from this amount and so you should receive KD 263.500 as payment for the balance of your annual leave but if you were paid KD 129 then you stand to receive KD 246.500.
So, if the company doesn’t pay you your actual leave salary or demands that you pay the residence fees, just walk into the Labor Office in your area (yours is on the 9th floor of the Behbehani Complex in Sharq) and file a complaint against your firm. The Labor Office will do the rest.