Corporate criminal liability Criminal liability Wage manipulation, non-payment or withholding of wages
Article 66 provides that the wages of workers appointed on the basis of an annual or monthly remuneration must be paid, at least, once a month, and the wages of all other workers must be paid, at least, once every two weeks. Importantly, the employer must pay the wages to the employee by bank transfer to an account in a financial institution in Qatar. Any person who violates any of the provisions of Article 66 shall be punished by imprisonment for a period not exceeding one month, and a fine of not less than 2,000 Qatari Riyals and not exceeding 6,000 Qatari Riyals.
This provision was introduced in the Labour Code by Act No. 1 of 2015. The purpose of this mechanism is to make it easier for migrant workers and for the government to scrutinize and document any late or non-existing payments. Under this provision companies will be required to pay their employees through direct bank transfers. Under Art. 145 of the Labour Code, employers in violation of the amendment could face jail time of up to one month and fines of 2,000 to 6,000 Qatari Riyals. While the ‘Wage Protection System’ introduced in this provision was meant to come into force in August 2015, the Qatari government has delayed the implementation date until November 2015, to allow companies more time to prepare.
Article 66. [Unofficial translation] The wages and the other amounts due to the Worker shall be paid in the Qatari Riyals. Workers who are appointed on annual or monthly wages shall be paid wages at least once a month. The wages of all other workers shall be paid, at least, once every two weeks. An employer shall transfer the wage to a worker’s ccount at one of the financial institutions in the Statein order to ensure its payment at the specified deadline in accordance with the two previous paragraphs. An employer would be considered to have paid a orker’s wage only after having fulfilled the above. The necessary rules governing the protection of workers’ wages hall be promulgated by virtue of Ministerial Order.
Law /Qatar / Labour Law No. 14 of 2004
Qatar Labour Law 2004 governs the terms of employment of the majority of workers working in Qatar. The Labour Law sets out the minimum entitlements of workers employed in Qatar, and as such, it contains a number of important protections for workers, prohibits child labour, prohibits recruiting foreign workers by or through unlicensed recruiters or agencies,bans recruitment agencies from charging recruitment fees, and provides for mechanisms to enforce its provisions.
Any stipulations contrary to the provisions of the Labour Law are void unless more advantageous to the employee.