Lying on your resume may leave you out of luck if you later want to sue your employer for wrongful termination or discrimination.
Many jobseekers inflate their resumes by exaggerating their experience or credentials.
Employers may be able to use this misinformation to defend against lawsuits for wrongful termination or discrimination.
The emerging tactic even has a name: the After-Acquired Evidence Theory. Conduct that might be held sufficiently serious to be admitted as after-acquired evidence includes:
If you did lie on your job application or resume, however, you may not be completely out of luck. Your employer can use the misinformation as a defense only if it was truly related to your job duties or performance.
The contract should always:
It is critical that the primary employment contract document refers to specific entitlements including:
Strong consideration should be given to the inclusion of clauses in the contract covering issues such as:
Employees’ minimum entitlements have been set by the UAE Labor Law. In fact, pursuant to Article (7) of the UAE Labor Law, any stipulations contrary to the provisions of the Labor Law in respect of such minimum entitlements, even if made prior to enactment of the Law, shall be null and void unless they are more advantageous to the employee.
A statement of duties should be attached. For this attachment to itself become part of the terms of the contract, it must be expressly incorporated into the contract by a statement which makes it part of the contract in the body of the contract itself.
Parties and duration of contract
The beginning of any contract should stipulate the parties to the contract, that is the name of the organization as the employer and the name of the person who is the employee. The employer must be a body with legal standing such as a company, partnership, or authority (eg a local government body or registered company/trading name). The parties bound clause should indicate the title of the position which is being filled by the employee, and the commencement date of the contract. It should also state the duration of the contract, if it is for a fixed term.
Remuneration is normally seen as including the salary for the position, the payment of performance bonus or merit payments, along with a range of fringe benefits may be used as part of the remuneration package.
The remuneration clause should specify the pay period interval and method of payment.
The clause should also contain details of the basis upon which any adjustment to the base salary and/or total remuneration will be made, including the timetable for the annual review of the salary and the date of effect of such adjustment.
It is recommended that consideration be given to specifying in the employment contract the actual basis of the adjustment of salary.
Hours of work
The contract of employment should indicate the hours of work which are required to be observed by the employee. Where managerial and professional women workers may work longer hours than those which have been specified by law and are not paid formal overtime, it is expected that the remuneration package is enhanced accordingly.
The contract should also specify the basis upon which the hours of work are expected to be worked.
The minimum entitlement to annual leave in the UAE is 2 days per month where the worker's period of service is more than six months but less than one year, and 30 days per year where the worker's period of service is more than one year.
Public holidays, Sick Leave and Maternity Leave
It is good practice for the contract to include a clause listing all of the public holidays to be observed as paid holidays, as well as provisions regarding sick leave and maternity leave.
It is normal practice for employees to be reimbursed all expenses incurred while carrying out the business of the employer. This includes traveling expenses e.g. fares, accommodation, meals, entertainment and out of pocket expenses.
It is important that you ascertain what expenses you are likely to incur in your employment and ensure that your contract covers the reimbursement of those expenses.
It is normal that an understanding be reached between the employer and the woman worker on the need for her to maintain and improve professional knowledge and ability. It is not uncommon for the employee to be authorized to attend conferences, seminars, short courses, etc. and that the employer meets all associated costs and shall continue the payment of full salary benefits to the employee.
Termination of employment
All contracts should contain a clause outlining how the termination of employment can be made.
Provision should be made in the contract for termination prior to its expiry (if applicable).
The employer may wish to include a clause that seeks to restrict where or with whom a departing employee may work. Such non-competition clauses usually proscribe, for a set period, clients of the company, business rivals or geographical areas as subsequent employment fields for the departing employee. The inserted clause should clearly identify the restrictions and time frame.
The courts have long held that such a clause will only be enforceable against the employee if the restraint is reasonable. In fact, under the provisions of Article (127) of the UAE Labour Law and Article (909) of the UAE Civil Transactions Law, non-competition clauses and agreements are lawful and binding between the employer and his employee, provided that such clauses or agreements are limited in time, place and nature of the business, to the extent necessary to protect the employer’s lawful interests, and that the employer does not terminate the employment contract without justifiable reason or commit any act which justifies the employee’s resignation. What is reasonable or necessary to protect the employer’s lawful interests, will depend upon the circumstances, but since the courts consider clauses in restraint of trade to be in general against public policy the interpretation of what is reasonable is quite narrow.
when initially faced with signing a non-compete agreement, your first best step may be to negotiate some of the finer print with your employer. There are a few pointers for crafting your arguments.
The more relevant and reasonable restraint an employer may impose upon an employee relates to a restraint against dissemination of information gathered by the employee in the course of his employment. An employer may not restrain an employee from disseminating knowledge gained by him or her in the course of his or her employment where that knowledge is within the public domain. However, where an employer obtains confidential information about, for example, the particular requirements of a customer which are peculiar to that customer, a clause in the contract of employment restraining the employee from making use of that information is unlikely to be considered unreasonable.
Ownership of intellectual property
Frequently an argument about dissemination of information will revolve around ownership of the information. Engineers and scientists are by their nature inventive. An employer may wish to include within the employment contract a clause which will grant ownership to the employer of all inventions made by the employee during her employment whether or not those inventions touch upon the employment itself.
However, although it is reasonable for an employer to own an invention it paid to develop, it is not reasonable for him to own an invention which came about by reason of the employee's ingenuity and imagination in areas outside the scope of his employment.
Specific care should be taken by employees to ensure that contracts do not include clauses which transfer to the employer ownership of the fruits of their inventiveness.
Finally, you should at all times keep in mind that any stipulations in the employment contract contrary to the provisions of the UAE Labor Law, particularly in respect of women workers' minimal rights at work, shall be null and void unless they are more advantageous to the worker.