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Updated January 2023 

Overseas Filipino Workers, commonly referred to as OFWs, are Filipino nationals who are currently working abroad. The term OFW encompasses individuals working as domestic workers, construction workers, nurses, engineers, and others.

Here is everything you need to know about OFWs in the UAE.

OFW UAE latest news 2023

The MWO (Migrant Worker Office) has recently just updated the requirements for the Individual Contract Verification for OFW’s in Dubai and Northern Emirates that will come to effect on 01 February 2023. Below are the details:

Individual Contract Verification requirements for domestic workers:

  • Valid Employment Contract (with minimum of wage AED 1,500. For those people whose wage falls below the AED 1,500 please contact your employer to have the contract amended at any Tadbeer center.)
  • Addendum to the employment contract.
  • Worker’s valid passport.
  • Worker’s valid visa stamp (if issued prior to 11 April 2022) or Emirates ID (if issued from 11 April 2022 onwards).

Additional requirements

For OFWs without previous record with the POEA and for registered BM with change of employer:

  • Emirates ID of the employer

For Abu Dhabi and Al Ain visa holders who are working in Dubai or the Northern Emirates:

  • Proof of work address (e.g., employer’s billing statement, tenancy agreement, etc.)

Individual Contract Verification requirements for skilled workers:

  • Valid employment contract.
    • In case of discrepancy in job title: A company letter or any acceptable documentary proof explaining the difference.
    • In case of discrepancy in company name: A proof of relationship or any acceptable document showing the relationship between the company names (e.g., Old and New Trade Licenses, or Company/Employer Certification).
    • In case the basic wage is below 1,500dhs, with the total wage being at least AED 1,500: Salary Certificate or last 3 months’ Pay Slips, duly stamped and signed by the employer, or Bank Statement showing receipt of salary; and a Salary Undertaking of the worker affirming that he/she is fully aware of the basic salary indicated in the contract which shall be the basis for his/her gratuity pay, and that he/she shall negotiate for the increase in basic wage upon contract renewal
  • Worker’s valid passport
  • Worker’s valid visa stamp (if issued prior to 11 April 2022) or Emirates ID (if issued from 11 April 2022 onwards).

Additional requirements

For OFWs without previous record with the POEA and for registered BM with change of employer:

  • Company business/trade license
  • Wage protection system record (if under MOHRE), or bank statement showing salary receipt
  • Academic credentials

For Abu Dhabi and Al Ain visa holders who are working in Dubai or the Northern Emirates:

  • Company certification or work address

All documentary requirements must be submitted in two sets, along with a verification fee of AED 40.00. Please arrange the documents according to their order in the list. For representatives, appropriate authorization letter and EID copy will be required. For holders of Investor, Partner, or Husband/Wife/Dependent Visa, contract verification is not necessary

OFW UAE working hours

The working hours for OFWs in the UAE are in accordance with the UAE labour law. Details are as follows:

  • maximum of 8 hours a day for a 48-hour work week (can be increased to 9 hours a day in commercial establishments)
  • reduced working hours during Ramadan
  • no employee shall work for 5 consecutive hours without breaks for rest and meals of at least 1 hour

There are additional laws and regulations concerning overtime and other issues. Please consult the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation website for more info.

Do note that it is crucial for OFWs planning to work or return to the UAE as an OFW to obtain an Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) before leaving the Philippines. The Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) is a requirement for OFWs leaving the Philippines and serves as proof of being legally recruited for work overseas.

If you’re an OFW based in Dubai, you can learn more about obtaining an OEC in Dubai as well as determine whether you’re eligible for an exemption by consulting our dedicated article below.

OEC 2023: Everything You Need to Know About the Philippines’ Exit Clearance for OFWs

OFW UAE salary

According to POEA online page, the range salary of OFWs in UAE is from AED 2,000 to 5,000 based on the type of job.

Salary and salary-related benefits in the UAE

  • there is no minimum wage in the UAE
  • overtime pay: 25% of basic salary
  • overtime pay (9 PM to 4 AM): 50% of basic salary
  • overtime shall not exceed 2 hours, except in emergency cases
  • work on rest day/holiday: substitute rest day + 50% basic salary or regular day’s pay + 50%
  • annual Leave Pay: Basic salary +housing allowance only (other allowances are not paid)
  • end of service gratuity
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Payment of salary

The OFWs will be paid based on the following conditions.

  • paid in Dirhams, at the place of work (or through bank transfer)
  • paid at least once a month (salaries are considered delayed if not paid within 15 days from the wage cut-off date) except daily wage earners (paid once every 3 weeks)
  • employee shall not be required to purchase food or other commodities from a particular shop

 

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