Reem Saad / Doha News

Restaurant staff

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With fasting set to begin on Saturday or Sunday, Qatar’s labor ministry is reminding employers to adhere to legally required shortened workdays – or face penalties.

Qatar’s Labor Law states that employees should work a maximum six-hour day during Ramadan, or be paid overtime for longer days.

But while this is a rule is strictly adhered to in Qatar’s public sector (who will be working a five-hour day during the holy month) it’s sometimes ignored by private companies.

Now, however, the government has announced that it is planning to carry out spot checks during Ramadan to ensure firms are following the rules.

Marvin Fernandez

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

The ministry conducts such checks every year. But this is the first time it is publicly putting employers on notice about following the rules.

Legal action could follow if they don’t, the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs (MADSLA) said in a statement.

What the law says

In Qatar, most employees  – whether they are fasting or not – must work a maximum 36-hour week during Ramadan.

Reem Saad / Doha News

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Last year, a lawyer explained that this rule applies to all working people with the exception of supervisors, security guards and cleaning staff.

This week, the ministry said that if employees are required to work longer than 36 hours a week, they must be paid at an overtime rate of at least 25 percent more than their normal salaries.

The law also says that the a regular working day should be no longer than 10 hours.

MADLSA is encouraging workers whose employers are not giving adhering to the rules to let them know. You can do this by phone (40288888) or via Facebook or Twitter.