Injured staff can't be fired during treatment

Court was hearing a case where an employee suffered 8% disability after suffering injury at work. (Ashok Verma)

In a new legal principle, the Dubai Court of Cassation said employees who are injured at work will continue to be on the rolls of the company during the period of treatment.

The treatment duration and employees’ abilities to perform their duties will be decided by physicians, the court added.

The court was issuing its verdict in a case where an employee demanded Dh571,000 compensation from his company for terminating his service while he was undergoing treatment for an injury he suffered at work.

The employee had filed a case with the Dubai Labour Court of First Instance seeking Dh571,000 compensation from the company.

According to the Prosecution, the man had joined the company as an engineer for a salary of Dh15,000 under a specific contract for a year-and-a-half. However, after eight months, he suffered an injury at work and had to undergo surgery in his hometown in Egypt. The treatment lasted six months.

When he returned to Dubai, he was admitted to Rashid Hospital, which issued a medical report stating he suffered from eight per cent disability.

Meanwhile, the company had terminated his services and he claimed that it refused to pay him his dues, too.

The Court of First Instance issued a verdict in favour of the employee and asked the company to pay him Dh186,000 and rejected other requests.

Both parties appealed the judgment before the Court of Appeal, which reduced the compensation amount to Dh181,000.

The company challenged the judgment before the Supreme Court, which refused to accept the company’s appeal.

The Court based its ruling on Articles 145, 146 and 147 of Labour Code.

The Court explained that medical report issued by Rashid Hospital had only mentioned that the employee suffers from eight per cent disability but does not mention that the employee is incapable of performing his duties.

Therefore, the court ruled, the employee’s service with the company should continue at least until the date of issuance of the report.

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