KUWAIT: Many workers have lost their jobs since the country went on a coronavirus lockdown. As Kuwait imposed a partial curfew and closed its borders, airports and businesses and suspended schools, many people faced unfair actions. Kuwait Times spoke to Mohammad Al-Jasem, lawyer and Interpol-accredited expert in international law enforcement cooperation, to learn about the legal issues faced by workers.
Many employers have terminated their workers due the current situation. But Jasem said an employer does not have the right to fire his employees according to article 41 of the labor law, where the law affirms that the employer cannot terminate the services of a worker without notice, or else he must offer compensation in recognition of his loss.
“Unless the worker has committed a mistake that resulted in a large loss for the employer or violated the contract, the employer cannot just fire the worker. If it was proven that the employer terminated the worker for no obvious reason, the employee shall be entitled to end-of-service benefits and compensation for the material and moral damages suffered,” he added.
Regarding some cases where some employees were forced to sign a paper giving up their financial rights, Jasem said: “The employer does not have the right to do so and it is legally void. In many labor cases, this has not been taken into account, and the verdict was in favor of the employee despite the existence of such a paper. Likewise, the employer does not have the right to cut or suspend salaries, and is obliged to pay wages in full throughout the period of suspension as long as the employer wishes to continue working with the employee, according to article 61 of the labor law.”