Can an employer send me on unpaid leave?

After the coronavirus outbreak in Saudi Arabia, the country has taken many right but difficult step to stop the epidemic from spreading.

Government measures to control coronavirus

Taking into account the increasing number of coronavirus cases in Saudi Arabia, the country has taken many precautionary steps such as;

Saudi Arabia issued instructions to close down all shopping malls in the country so that people can stay home.

The next day, the government announced to close down all banks and government offices.

Since the virus is so contagious, the government finally issued instructions to give 2 weeks' leave to private-sector employees as well.

Unpaid medical leave

Following the instructions of the government, many private companies have started sending their employees on unpaid medical leave for a period of 2 weeks.

Some other companies are deducting this leave from their annual leave balance.

Can an employer send me on unpaid leave?

The Ministry of Labor has clarified that no worker can be sent out on unpaid leave without their consent. Such an act is against the labor laws of the Kingdom.

Employee and employer are to follow the labor laws regulations, these circumstances cannot amend them.

In case, private firms continue doing so, complaints can be lodged through the ministry’s App “Ma3an lil Rasd” on smartphones or calling on the number 19911.

Source: Saudi Gazette

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.