Are you considering hiring a maid, nanny or domestic worker on a non-full time, short term basis? Here's what the UAE law says.
1 August 2023| Last updated on 21 November 2023
Employ a maid or nanny legally in the UAE with our guide.
For many expat families in the UAE, busy parents may find it difficult to juggle house upkeep, work, family life, and having time for personal hobbies.
Hiring a maid in the UAE can provide busy working parents with invaluable support, freeing up time for more family moments and reducing stress. A domestic worker is a trusted helping hand in managing household tasks, chores, taking care of the kids, and ensuring a smoother routine at home.
There are two types of house help you can hire: full time and part time.
Here is what you need to know if you are considering hiring a part time maid in the UAE.
Are part time domestic helpers legal in the UAE?
As per the UAE labour law, it is illegal to hire an independent domestic helper on a part time basis, which includes maids, nannies, etc.
If a family is interested in employing a house helper in the UAE, the sponsor must only hire her on a full time basis.
Can I hire a domestic worker in the UAE who claims to have her "own visa"?
Hiring independent house help who says she has her "own visa" is illegal in the UAE. As mentioned, only a full time contract is allowed.
What about cleaning companies?
Residents are allowed to hire temporary cleaning help who are contracted under cleaning companies and services in the UAE. They are usually hired on a part time hourly basis through an appointment or request made directly through the cleaning company.
For your safety, please avoid hiring an independent cleaner who is 1.) Operating as a part time cleaner but is not employed by a cleaning company, and 2.) Claims to have his or her "own visa".
Can you hire from a maid agency in the UAE?
Maid agencies have been illegal in the UAE for some time now. Instead, Tadbeer centres, which are regulated by the UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE), operate as the only licensed centre that helps recruit domestic helpers.
As per the new law on household workers that came into effect on 15th December 2021, employers are prohibited from directly hiring domestic helpers. They are only allowed if they are licensed to do so from the ministry.
"The new law stipulates that the recruitment or temporary employment of domestic helpers shall not be allowed unless after obtaining a licence from the ministry," stated MoHRE officials.
It's important to note that these rules and changes were made to protect the rights and safety of domestic helpers in the UAE as well as employers.