In this overview, we will discuss the main provisions of the Labor Law in Egypt and will focus on the following topics:
The Applicable Labor law in Egypt
Leaves as per the Egyptian Labor law
General notes on the Employee's leaves
Working hours & Overtime as per the Egyptian labor law
General note on Disciplinary Sanctions
The legitimate reasons for terminating the Employment agreement
General notes on the termination of the Employment agreement
The Applicable Law
Labor law no. 12 of 2003 is the applicable law in Egypt.
Leaves as per the Egyptian Law
In this section, we will mention all leaves granted to the Employees as per the Egyptian law
- The Employer shall grant the Employee an annual leave of 21 days after working 6 months with The Employer. (Please see Article 47 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant the Employee an annual leave of 30 days after working 10 years (Please see Article 47 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant the Employee aged 50 years an annual leave of 30 days. (Please see Article 47 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- THE Employer shall grant the Employee a leave of 30 days for Haj or visiting the Holy Home, to be given for only one time in a lifetime, after working 5 years with The Employer. (Please see Article 53 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant the female Employee, after working at The Employer for 10 months, a maternity leave of 90 days twice during the working relationship. (Please see Article 91 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant the female Employee a daily hour break for nursing their child till the age of 24 months. (Please see Article 93 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant a weekly paid leave of 24 hours per week as a minimum (Please see Article 83 of the Egyptian Labour law) except if the nature of the work requires that the Employee shall take combined leave, so in this case, the maximum days of work shall not exceed two months (Please see Article 84 of the Egyptian Labour law).
- The Employer shall grant the Employee leaves in the Egyptian Official National days with a maximum of 13 days (Please see Article 52 of the Egyptian Labour law).
General Notes on the Employee's Leaves
The Employee shall secure the prior approval of the Employer before obtaining any leave, however, the Employer shall make sure to grant his approval for 15 days of leaves for the Employees as a minimum per year (including six consecutive days, however, for accidental causes, the Employee can interrupt from work for 6 days (2 days as a maximum per each time of interruption) without securing the prior approval of the Employer, taking into consideration that the days of interruption for accidental reasons shall be deducted from the annual leave of the Employees. (Please see article no. 48).
The Employer shall organize the annual leave of the Employee and if the latter refuses in writing to obtain his leave, then, the Employee will not be entitled to obtain a consideration for this leave that he refused to obtain. (Please see article no. 48 of the Egyptian law).
The Employer shall settle the leaves balance for Employees every 3 years as a maximum. (Please see article no. 48 of the Egyptian law)
If the employment period of the Employee is less than one year, then the Employee shall be entitled to obtain leave in proportion to the period he has spent in work, providing he has spent six months in the service of the Employer. i.e. the Employee is not entitled to obtain leave for the first 6 months of his work. (Please see article no. 47)
Working Hours & Overtime as per the Egyptian Labor Law
The working hours shall not exceed 8 hours per day or 48 hours per week (please see article no. 80 of the Egyptian Labor Law).
The Employee is entitled to enjoy one hour as a minimum for taking a break and meal and it is ok to be scheduled throughout the day provided that the worker shall start his break after spending 5 working hours as a maximum. (please see article no. 81 of the Egyptian Labor Law)
The Minors working hours shall not exceed 6 hours per day.
Minors (from 14 years to 18 years) and women cannot be scheduled after 7 PM to 7 AM as per the provisions of Articles nos. 101 and 89 of the Egyptian Labour law.
The Employee may work additional working hours. In this case, the Employee shall receive an additional wage, in addition to his normal wage, for the overtime hours as agreed upon in the employment contract, providing that such wage shall not be less than the wage the Employee is entitled to plus (35%) for the daytime working hours, and (70%) for the night working hours. (Pursuant to Article 85 of the Egyptian Labour law).
The Employer may impose one of the following sanctions based on the gravity of the Employee's action:
2-Deduction from the Salary;
3- Deferring the due date of the annual increment (annual increase) for a period not exceeding three months;
4-Depriving from part of the annual increment not exceeding its half;
5-Postponing the promotion on its accrual for a period not exceeding one year;
6-Reducing the wage by at most the amount of one increment;
7-Demoting to a position in the lower grade directly, without prejudice to his wage.
8-Firing from the service according to the provisions of the present law.
(Please see Article 60 of the Egyptian Labour law)
General Notes on Disciplinary Sanctions
The Employer shall have labour regulations (Please see article no. 58)
For any violation, the Employer shall not deduct from the salary an amount exceeding 5 days' wages. (Please see article no. 61)
For each violation, the Employer is entitled to impose one sanction from the sanctions listed above. (Please see article no. 62)
No sanction shall be imposed without conducting an investigation with the Employee in writing except for the sanction of warning and deducting from salary if the deduction is only one day. (Please see article no. 64)
The investigation shall be made for 7 days starting from the date of discovering the violation. (Please see article no. 64)
The sanction shall be imposed on the Employee within 30 days starting from the date of finishing the investigation. (Please see article no. 59)
The Employer or the legal counsel of the Employer shall conduct the investigation. (Please see article no. 65).
The Employer may suspend the Employee for 60 days as a maximum if it is necessary for conducting investigations to suspend him, however, the Employer shall pay the salary of the Employee during suspension. (Please see article no. 65).
The Legitimate Reasons for Terminating the Employment Agreement:
The Employer is entitled to terminate the contract at any time, without paying any compensation to the Employee, in the following cases:
- If the Employee is impersonated by an incorrect person or presented false documents.
- If the Employee is found guilty of an error that caused serious damage to the Employer provided that the Employer informs the competent authorities of the incident within 24 hours from the time of his knowledge of the occurrence thereof.
- If the Employee fails to observe the instructions necessary to follow the safety of the Employees
- If the Employee is absent for 20 intermittent days during a year without legitimate justification or without securing the prior approval of the Employer, provided that the Employer should send a registered notice to the Employee after 10 days from the absence.
- If the Employee is absent for 10 consecutive days during a year without legitimate justification or without securing the prior approval of the Employer, provided that the Employer should send a registered notice to the Employee after 5 days from the consecutive absence.
- If it is proved that the Employee has disclosed the secrets of the Employer and led to serious damage to the company.
- If the Employee competes with the Employer in the same activity.
- If the Employee is found during the working hours drunk or affected by the drug use.
- If the Employee has assaulted the Employer or one of his superiors during or because of the work.
- If the Employee participated in a strike against the Employer without observing the provisions of this law.
(Please see Article 69 of the Egyptian Labour law)
General Notes on the Termination of the Employment Agreement
The new Employee shall be subject to a probation period of 3 months. During this period the Employer will be entitled to terminate the contract made between the Employer and the Employee without paying any compensation, so we can terminate the agreement without any reasons during this period. (Please see Article no. 33 of the Egyptian Labor law no. 12 of 2003)
The Limited period agreement shall be terminated by its expiration.
In the limited period agreement, if the period of the agreement exceeds 5 years, then the Employee is entitled to terminate the agreement after the expiration of the 5 years provided that the Employee shall serve legal notice of three months before the termination. (Please see article no. 104)
In the unlimited period agreement, the Employer can only terminate the agreement for the reasons mentioned in the article 69 of the Egyptian labor law while the Employee can terminate the agreement with prior notification of two months if the period is less than 10 years and 3 months notification if the work period exceeds 10 years. (Please see article no. 111)
Firing of the Employee shall be imposed by the labour court (Please see article no. 68)
In practice, the Employer can terminate the agreement before its expiration if one of the above-mentioned cases happened, however, if the Employee filed a lawsuit before the court for unfair termination, then the Employer shall have strong evidence to prove the violation.
If the Employer decides to terminate one of his Employees without having legitimate reasons as prescribed in article no. 69, then the Employee will be entitled to claim for a minimum 2 months' salary per each year of work as compensation for unfair termination.
Don't terminate the agreement of any Employee without conducting an investigation by the legal counsel of the company. (Please see article no. 122).
Normally, the courts sympathize with the Employee.
Don't sign an unlimited period Employment agreement with the Employees.
Make sure to sign a limited period Employment agreement with the Employees for one year only.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.