Rules related to Sick Leave in Saudi Arabia

Sick Leave during illness

Article 117 of Saudi Labor Law allows an ill employee to take sick leave for a period of 4 months in Saudi Arabia. The distribution of 4 months of sick leave will be the following;

sick leave in saudi arabiaJoining annual leave with sick leave

An employee can join his sick leave with annual leave as per Article 82 of Saudi Labor Law.

  • An employer cannot terminate his employee who is on sick leave before completing the 4 months period.
  • If an employee got sick while he was on annual leave, his annual leave will be put on hold and sick leave will start from the date the doctor has warranted sickness. He can continue his annual leave after completing the sick leave.

In case of any conflict between the company policy and the Saudi Labor Law, the law will prevail.

Sick Leave due to workplace Injury

If an employee gets injured or falls sick due to a workplace injury, the employer will bear the entire cost of the treatment as per Article 133 of Saudi Labor Law.

As per Article 137 of Saudi Labor Law, an employee is entitled to the following sick leaves during the work-related injury recovery period.

  • Fully paid sick leave for 2 months.
  • The next 10 months will be paid at 75% of the total salary. 

Compensation for Total Disability

As per Article 137 of Saudi Labor Law, if one year elapses or if it has been medically determined that he is not physically fit to work, the injury shall be classified as total disability as the employment contract will be terminated.

As per Article 138 of Saudi Labor Law, in case of total disability, the employee is entitled to the higher of;

  • 36 months salary.
  • SR 54,000.

The employer cannot recover what he paid to the injured during the first year as per article 137 of Saudi Labor Law.

Sick Leave due to Coronavirus

An employee infected with coronavirus is entitled to 10 days of sick leave in Saudi Arabia.

Medical Certificate for Sick leave

However, in order to avail of the sick leave in Saudi Arabia, the worker will have to bring a certificate from a doctor to warrant his sickness.

Some years ago, it was quite easy to take a fake illness certificate from a hospital or clinic in Saudi Arabia to apply for sick leave. However, this is not the case anymore after the strict actions taken by the government.

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