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Tuesday, January 12, 2016


In a news report via Saudi Gazette, one of the leading English Newspaper in Saudi Arabia, it says, companies counting weekends (it's not clear if one day weekend which is Friday, or two-day weekend mostly for government employees which is Friday and Saturday) as part of an employee’s annual leave will have to pay a fine of up to SR100,000, news found at Makkah Arabic daily which quoted a Ministry of Labor source. Accordingly, in
the new Saudi Labor Law, the weekends are not supposed to be counted as part of the employees’ annual leave or year-end vacation. So if you have a one month vacation, you can apply for a 26 days vacation excluding 4 Fridays in the counting, or 22 days vacation, if you have 2 days off every weekend.

Here is an excerpt of that report:

“The ministry has recorded several cases where companies and employers exploit the ignorance of employees about their rights. Many companies count the weekends as part of annual vacation which is a clear violation of the Saudi Labor Law,” said the source.

“Weekends are official paid leaves. No company has the right to force its employees to work during the weekend and no company has the right to deduct salary for the weekends,” said the source.

Penalties for violating this regulation are usually monetary but sometimes administrative.The ministry has the right to increase the penalty stated under the law when the violation is repeated.Violators will be given a deadline to pay the fines. If the violator does not pay on time, the penalty and fine will be increased, said the source.

In certain cases, the ministry has the authority to close down the company for 30 days. If the violation is repeated, the ministry has the right to cancel the license of the company, said the source.