The principle aim of the new law is to amend Article 66 of the Labour Law concerning the manner of paying employee salaries. The amending provision requires employers to transfer salaries to Qatar bank accounts of employees to ensure proper and timely payment. In the absence of a salary transfer, an employer is deemed to have not paid the employee.
The new law also adds a provision imposing penalties of imprisonment of not more than one month and a fine between QAR 2,000 and QAR 6,000 for violations of the new Article 66.
Currently, the new law does not address any exceptions or exemptions for employees whose salaries are paid through offshore bank accounts.
Employers are required to comply with the new provision by 2 November 2015 (which is within six months of its effective date, 2 May 2015). This compliance deadline may be extended for another six months or more upon a decision of the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs.
If you or your company wish to receive legal advice concerning these changes to the Qatar Labour Law, please contact the Doha office of Squire Patton Boggs.