Expats working in Bahrain, it is very important that you understand your rights, terms and conditions in you labour employment contract. The Labour Contract is an agreement between the employer and employee, where the latter performs specific tasks in return for a wage, and for a definite period of time.
Recently, the Kingdom Bahrain was hailed as the most popular destination for expats in a global survey. People from all over the world decide to come here because it offers plenty of job opportunities, advanced health care, amazing attractions, and a comfortable lifestyle.
As a foreigner working in this country, it is wise to get acquainted with your work contract so you know your rights as well as your limitations. Knowing the law will help you when making decisions. This also helps you avoid getting threatened by your employer (in bad situations) wherein they might take advantage of your lack of knowledge. So here’s a guide to help you and give you some insights about the contract as per Bahrain Labour Law.
What You Should Know about your Employment Contract
The Labour Contract is an essential part of living and working in Bahrain. You need it when applying for a work visa, residence permit, and other important documents. Labour contracts are governed under the new Bahrain Labour Law, which was issued by the King in 2012.
Before signing any contract, it is important to know what the Individual Labour Contract is all about. To understand it better, here are some things that every aspiring worker should know, as specified under the Labour Law of Bahrain:
Language and Format (Article 19)
- The Labour Contract should be written in Arabic, in two copies (one copy for each party).
- If the contract is written in another language, a translated version (Arabic) should be attached.
- If the contract contains references to by-laws, these by-laws should be attached and signed by both parties.
Information Needed (Article 20)
The Labour Contract should contain the following information:
- Employer’s name, company address, and trade register number
- Worker’s name, birth date, nationality, occupation, qualifications, residential address, and personal identification documents
- Nature, type, and duration of the job contract
- Wage, mode and time of payment, and benefits
- Other information deemed relevant to the contract
Probationary Period (Article 21)
- If specified in the labour contract, the worker may be employed under a probationary period of up to three months. This period may be increased up to six months, if determined by the Ministry of Labour. The probationary condition may only be retained if specified in the contract.
- The employer or employee may decide to terminate a labour contract during the probationary period. In either case, the concerned party should notify the other party at least one day before the date of termination.
- The same employer should not employ a worker under probation more than once.
Work Conditions (Article 22)
- The employer should not deviate from the conditions agreed upon in the labour contract.
- The employer should not entrust the employee with work that is not agreed upon unless necessary — as in the case of a force majeure or to prevent the occurrence of any accidents.
- The employer may entrust the employee with work that is not agreed upon, as long as this is not essentially different from the latter’s original work, and his rights are not prejudiced.
- The employer may train the employee to perform work that is different from the one agreed upon, as long as it is in line with the company’s technological development — and the concerned Ministry and trade union are notified.
DISCLAIMER: The topics presented in this article are for information-sharing purposes only. These should not be used as basis for actual labour concerns or legal proceedings. To learn more about the Bahrain Labour Law, visit the official website of the Labour Market Regulatory Authority. Moreover, check out this guide on what to do upon arrival in Bahrain.