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  • Legal system, currency, language

    Constitutional. The official currency is the Kwanza (AOA). The official language is Portuguese.

  • Corporate presence requirements & payroll set-up

    A foreign entity may engage employees in Angola with proper payroll registrations, subject to business, corporate and tax considerations. The employer is responsible for withholding from an employee's pay, and delivering to the tax authority, income tax and contributions to Angolan social security. The level of income tax is defined by the government and varies in line with the employee's salary.

  • Pre-hire checks

    Required

    Immigration compliance and pre-hire medical examinations.

    Permissible

    Reference and education checks are permissible.

  • Immigration

    Criminal and medical checks must be issued by competent authorities, a criminal record must be issued by the home country and a medical certificate must be issued by a doctor in the employee’s home country.

    The visa/work permit requirements for overseas nationals to work in Angola are having a recognized travel document valid for the Angolan territory for at least 6 months, being of legal age, not being included in the national list of undesirable persons prohibited from entering into the national territory, not constituting a danger to public order or to social security interests, complying with all health regulations established by the Ministry of Health for entry into the national territory, having an employment contract or promissory employment contract, having a certificate of professional and educational qualifications and curriculum vitae, and obtaining a positive opinion of the competent Ministry.

  • Hiring options

    Employee

    Indefinite-term contract (which is the rule), fixed-term or open-term (ie, a term contract whose termination date has not yet been defined, but that will be terminated as soon as the underlying need for contracting is no longer verified – for example, as a contract to cover absence), part-time contract, telework contract and contract under service commission regime – a particular type of contract for high-level employees which provides flexibility for termination and is not common. The parties may execute an employment contract for a fixed term or open term, which must be done in writing.  Part-time, fixed-term and open-term employees may not be discriminated against due to their status.

    Independent contractor

    Independent contractors may be engaged directly by the company or via a personal services company. Engagement may be subject to misclassification exposure. The factors that tend to indicate an individual is an employee (rather than, for example, a self-employed independent contractor) are the existence of a work schedule, the scheduling of vacation, the worker’s legal subordination to the company, the company’s authority, direction and disciplinary powers, control of punctuality and attendance over the individual, integration into the structure of the company and use of work tools belonging to the company, among others.

    In the event of misclassification, the relationship may be converted into an employment relationship on a permanent basis, and the employer may be liable to pay a fine for non-compliance.

    Agency worker

    Agency workers may only be engaged to fulfill a temporary need for work. The agency work contract duration depends on the underlying reason for hiring and does not typically exceed 12 months. Agency workers have the right to equal treatment to employees in relation to pay and other regular benefits.

  • Employment contracts & policies

    Employment contracts

    Written employment contracts are common but not mandatory, except for fixed-term, part-time, telework and service commission regime contracts as well as contracts with foreign employees and underage employees. Employment contracts cannot contain conditions that are less favorable to employees than mandatory employment legislation.

    Probationary periods

    Permissible.

    Employment contracts for an unlimited period of time may be subject to a probation period corresponding to the first 60 days of performance of work; the parties may, by written agreement, reduce or waive this period.

    The parties may extend the probation period, in writing, to up to 4 months in case of employees who perform highly technical, complex work that is difficult to evaluate, and to up to 6 months in case of employees who perform management duties.

    In an employment contract for a limited period of time, the parties may set forth a probation period in writing, and its duration cannot exceed 15 days in case of non-qualified employees, or 30 days in case of qualified employees. Angolan law does not define qualified and non-qualified, but the common practice is that qualified employees correspond to positions that involve technical complexity, a high degree of responsibility or special qualifications as well as those carrying out functions of trust.

    Policies

    Employers with more than 50 employees must, in order to organize the work and labor discipline, draft and approve employee handbooks, guidelines, instructions, service orders and work rules defining rules for the technical organization of work, performance of work and work discipline, delegation of powers, employee job descriptions, safety, hygiene and health protection of work, performance indicators, a remuneration system, working hours for the several sections of the company or work center, control of entrances and exits and circulation within the premises of the company, and surveillance and control of production.

    Employers with 50 or fewer employees may, but are not required to, implement employee handbooks on the matters described above.

    Third-party approval

    Whenever the employee’s handbook or any other rules and regulations establish rules on performance and discipline, remuneration systems, work performance or safety, hygiene and health protection at work, the employer must forward such regulations for information and registration purposes to the General Labor Inspectorate.

  • Language requirements

    Portuguese. Nevertheless, employment contracts and other documents may be drafted in a bilingual template.

  • Minimum employment rights

    Employees entitled to minimum employment rights

    All employees are entitled to minimum employment rights.

    Working hours

    Maximum daily and weekly working hours are 8 hours per day and 44 hours per week. Overtime pay is required for hours worked in excess of these limits. These limits are inapplicable to employees who perform direction and leadership duties, duties of inspection, or provide direct support to the employer. In case the employee usually performs their work outside the company's premises, an exemption regime may also be agreed upon by the parties, in which case those limits shall not apply. Typically, employees under the exemption regime are entitled to an exemption bonus.

    Overtime

    Overtime may occur with an extraordinary increase in workload, to prevent serious damage or if due to majeure force. It is subject to the following maximum limits: (a) 2 hours per day, (b) 40 hours per month and (c) 200 hours per year.

    Overtime must be compensated with additional payment (ie, an increase of hourly rates) up to 30 hours per month: 50 percent. 30 percent, 20 percent and 10 percent depending on whether it is a large, medium, small or micro company dependent on number of employees and turnover. A company which is a subsidiary or branch of a company with headquarters abroad always qualifies as a large company. Overtime that exceeds that limit is paid for each hour at an additional 75 percent, 45 percent, 20 percent and 10 percent depending on whether it is a large, medium, small or micro company.

    Wages

    The minimum wage is established by Presidential Decree. It is set out as a general minimum wage, but there is also a minimum wage for trade and extractive industry groups, transport services and manufacturing groups and agriculture groups. Under the Decree currently in force, the general minimum wage is AOA21,454.10. The following sector-specific minimum wages also apply:

    • Trade and extractive industry groups: AOA32,181.15
    • Transport services and manufacturing groups: AOA26,817.63 and
    • Agriculture groups: AOA21,454.10.

    Vacation

    Minimum 22 working days per year, plus 12 public national holidays.

    Sick leave & pay

    Employees are entitled to take off as much time as they need for sick leave. For large and medium companies: In case of incapacity to work due to illness or common accident, pay is required in the amount corresponding to 100 percent of the base salary for a period of 2 months. For as long as the employee is not entitled to protection in case of illness or common accident from the social security authorities, the employer must pay to the employee 50 percent of salary from the 3rd to the 12th month.

    In case of small and micro companies: The employee is paid, in case of illness or common accident, the amount of 50 percent of the base salary within 90 days, after which the contract is terminated by expiration if the condition of illness remains.

    Maternity/parental leave & pay

    A pregnant employee is entitled to a paid maternity leave of 3 months. The amount of the maternity allowance is equal to the average of the 2 best monthly salaries from the 6 months preceding the commencement of the maternity leave. The maternity allowance is paid directly by the employer to the employee and, subsequently, the Social Security services reimburse the employer in full. Fathers are not entitled to any leave on the birth of a child; it is only considered as a justifiable reason for absence from work for 1 day.

  • Discrimination

    Discrimination based on the following protected characteristics is prohibited: race, color, gender, ethnic origin, marital status, origin or social rank, religious beliefs, political opinion, union affiliation and language.

  • Benefits & pensions

    Both employer and employee must pay contributions to social security in Angola to cover various employee benefits (eg, maternity leave payment and retirement pension). The employer must withhold the contribution due by the employee and deliver both contributions (ie, employer and employee) to social security every month.

    Current general rates are 3 percent of the gross wage for the employee and 8 percent for the employer.

    Employees with a minimum contributory period (ie, 35 years) qualify for a retirement pension at age 60 or in cases of total incapacity.

    Employers have no legal obligation to provide complementary or supplementary social benefits in addition to the social coverage provided for by the social public scheme. However, some companies – mostly large companies or multinational companies who have their own schemes worldwide – set up and provide private complementary health and pension schemes to their employees.

  • Data privacy

    The Data Privacy Law No. 22/11, June 17 governs Angolan data privacy and determines, in general terms, how to collect, use, disclose, store and give access to "personal information."

    There is no specific regulation on employee data privacy.

  • Rules in transactions/business transfers

    Provided that the same business activity is maintained, the new employer takes the position of the former employer in the employment contracts and takes their position in respect of the rights and obligations arising from the employment relationships. This is the case even if the employment contract is terminated before the transfer. The new employer takes their position as the employer of such former employees in respect of due and non-paid credits. All credits, rights and obligations of the employer arising from the execution and implementation of the employment contract, its violation or termination are subject to a statute of limitations of 1 year starting on the day following the day of termination of the contract. Employees keep the same seniority and acquired rights which they had in the service of their former employer.

    The new employer undertakes the obligations of the former employer limited to those incurred during the 12 months prior to the modification, provided that, up to 22 business days prior to the modification, the new mployer gives notice to the employees that they must claim their credits up to the 2nd business day prior to the date scheduled for such modification. Within 22 business days following the modification of employer, the employees have the right to terminate the employment contract with prior notice, but this does not confer any right to compensation.

  • Employee representation

    Employee representative bodies are permissible but not mandatory.

    Trade unions are not common in Angola.

    In order to carry out their duties, trade union representatives are entitled to 4 paid hours a month but must notify the employer in advance of the date and number of days they require for the exercise of trade union functions. Employers are obliged to provide a suitable place for workers' meetings whenever this is requested by the union representatives. Special protections against dismissal are granted to employees who perform, or have performed, duties as union representatives, either as leaders or delegates, or members of the employees’ representative body performing union-related activities.

  • Termination

    Grounds

    Unilateral termination by the employer: dismissal based on objective grounds (ie, redundancy reasons); disciplinary dismissal with just cause (ie, based on serious breach of the employee's duties).

    Termination without cause (with notice): only for employees hired under an employment contract of service commission regime (a particular type of contract for high-level employees which provides flexibility for termination but is not common).

    Other termination causes: mutual agreement, termination by the employee (ie, termination with notice or constructive dismissal with just cause), expiration (ie, fixed-term and open-term contracts or retirement).

    Employees subject to termination laws

    All employees.

    Restricted or prohibited terminations

    Special protection against dismissal is granted to employees who perform, or have performed, duties as union representatives, either as leaders or delegates, or members of the employees’ representative body performing activities; women covered by the regime of maternity protection; war veterans as per the definition provided by the applicable law; employees under the legal age; employees with a reduced work capacity or with a disability degree equal or higher than 20 percent.

    As a general rule, a copy of the notice served on the employee must be forwarded to General Labor Inspectorate.

    Third-party approval for termination/termination documents

    Except in respect of protected employees, third-party approval is not required to terminate an employment.

    Mass layoff rules

    If economic, technological or structural circumstances occur, which may be clearly demonstrated and which involve an internal reorganization or conversion, or the reduction or the shutting down of activities, which makes it necessary to eliminate or significantly change job positions, the employer may terminate the employment contracts of the employees who perform such job positions.

    Collective dismissal rules are triggered if the dismissal involves at least 20 employees.

    Information to the General Labour Inspectorate is required. However, there is no need to obtain approval for termination.

    The General Labor Inspectorate may undertake the diligence deemed necessary for clarification of the situation and, in case of a collective dismissal, during the period in which the evaluation of the General Labor Inspectorate occurs, the employer may promote a meeting with the representative body or with the committee appointed for the purpose of exchange of information and clarification and may forward the conclusions of the meetings to the General Labor Inspectorate.

    Notice

    For individual dismissals based on objective grounds (up to 20 employees): the employer must forward, at least 30 days in advance, prior notice of dismissal to the employee or employees who occupy the job positions to be extinguished or transformed.

    For collective dismissal: the prior notice is 60 days.

    Notice periods in case of term contract: 15 business days if its duration is equal to or higher than 3 months.

    Statutory right to pay in lieu of notice or garden leave

    Payment in lieu of notice is permitted (and required if the notice period is not honored).

    Garden leave is allowed during the notice period.

    Severance

    Fair dismissal based on objective grounds (redundancy/collective dismissal):

    • Large companies: compensation corresponds to 1 base salary for each year of effective service up to the limit of 5 and an additional 50 percent of the base salary multiplied by the number of years of service that exceed such limit
    • Medium companies: compensation corresponds to 1 base salary for each year of effective service up to the limit of 3 and an additional 40 percent of the base salary multiplied by the number of years of service which exceed such limit
    • Small companies: compensation corresponds to 2 base salary and an additional 30 percent of the base salary multiplied by the number of years of service which exceed the limit of 2 years
    • Micro companies: compensation corresponds to 2 base salary and an additional 20 percent of the base salary multiplied by the number of years of service which exceed the limit of 2 years

       

      Fair disciplinary dismissal: no severance.

      Higher severance payments may be agreed and are usual as a way to avoid litigation.

  • Post-termination restraints

    A clause of the employment contract which restricts the activity of the employee for a period of time, which may not exceed 3 years from the termination of the contract, is lawful if the following conditions are met: (a) such clause is included, in writing, in the employment contract, or in its addendum; (b) the activity performed may cause real damage to the employer and may be considered as unfair competition; (c) the employee is paid a salary during the period of restriction of work: the corresponding amount will be included in the contract or its addendum, and it must be taken into account, in its calculation, the fact that the employer may have incurred in significant expenses in the professional training of the employee.

    A clause which requires an employee who benefits from professional improvement or higher level education at the expense of the employer to remain at the service of the same employer for a certain period of time, provided that such period does not exceed 1 year, in case of training of professional improvement and up to 3 years in case of courses of high level education, is also lawful if established in writing. In this case, the employee may release themselves from remaining at the employer’s service by repaying to the employer the amount of the expenses incurred by the employer, in proportion to the remaining time until the term of the agreed period. The employer that hires the employee within the period of restriction of activity in the company is jointly liable for the damages caused by the employee or for the amount not returned by the employee.

  • Waivers

    In principle, statutory rights cannot be waived and any waiver of such rights will be null and void.

  • Remedies

    Discrimination

    Fine corresponding to 5 to 10 times the average salary paid by the company.

    Unfair Dismissal

    The employee may challenge the validity of the dismissal before the labor courts.

    If the relevant court declares the dismissal to be unlawful, by final judgment, the employer must immediately re-instate the employee in the same job position and benefiting from the same previous conditions, or, alternatively, shall indemnify the employee (compensation is different depending on whether it is a large, medium, small or micro company and the cause of dismissal).

    In addition to re-instatement or the compensation, the employee is entitled to the base salaries they would have received if they had continued to perform work, until the date on which the employee finds a new job or up to the date of final judgment, whichever comes first, with a maximum limit of 6 months of base salary for large companies, 4 months to medium companies and 2 months for small and micro companies.

    Failure to inform and consult

    Not applicable.

  • Criminal sanctions

    Typically, non-compliance with employment laws leads to administrative proceedings which may lead to the payment of fines. If such non-compliance is based on violation of rights that deserve protection under criminal law, it may also lead to this type of judicial proceedings.

  • Key contacts

Language requirements

Angola

Portuguese. Nevertheless, employment contracts and other documents may be drafted in a bilingual template.

Argentina

There are no statutory requirements to translate employment contracts, policies or other documents. However, books and accounting records must be kept in the Spanish language. Further, every document filed with an Argentine court must be in Spanish, or a certified translation executed by an Argentine sworn translator must be provided.

Australia

No statutory requirements.

Austria

No statutory requirements as long as the employee understands the agreement. 

Bahrain

Pursuant to the Labor Law, all employment contracts and records must be in Arabic. Where a contract has been drafted in a foreign language, an Arabic-translated version may be attached to fulfill this requirement. If a document is registered in a dual language format and a dispute arises, then the Arabic version of the document will prevail.

Belgium

Either Dutch, French or German is mandatory, depending on the employee's place of work or the location of the registered office of the business for which the employee is working. The place of work or location of the registered office of the employer is determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on the factual circumstances.

Brazil

Although not required by statute, all employment documents should be in Portuguese. 

Canada

Canada has 2 official languages: English and French. Individuals are entitled to receive certain government services in either official language. In Quebec, language laws require that all written communications to employees, including offers of employment and promotion, must be prepared in French. In some instances, this may not be necessary if the employee consents to receiving the documentation in English. In some jurisdictions, posting of basic workplace rights must be done in English and the majority language of the workplace.

In Quebec, employers are prohibited from requiring a candidate to be proficient in a language other than French in order to be qualified for a role, unless the nature of the duties requires such knowledge.

In addition to an employer's statutory obligations, it is recommended that essential employment documents (eg, health and safety materials) are translated into other languages if an employee or group of employees is unable to understand the contents of the document as published in English or French.

Chile

Documents may be drafted in any language, but pursuant to opinions of the Labor Directorate, the employee should always receive a copy translated into Spanish. A bilingual version of each document is recommended.

China

Some cities may require a Chinese employment contract (ie, in Shanghai, an employment contract must be written in Chinese), and, if the content of the employment contract written in both Chinese and a foreign language is inconsistent, the Chinese employment contract will prevail.

If the employment contracts, policies or other documents must be submitted to the labor arbitration commission or court in China, they must be in Chinese.

Colombia

No statutory requirements. However, Spanish is recommended as the Colombian authorities require any employment document to be in Spanish or translated into Spanish.

Czech Republic

No statutory language requirement, except for posted workers for whom it is required to maintain a copy of an employment contract translated into either the Czech or Slovak languages at the workplace for both the posting employer and the employer to whom the employee has been posted.

However, all documents must be comprehensible to the employee to whom they are addressed (ie, language may be determined on a case-by-case basis). Works council, trade unions or other similar employees' representatives usually require all communication to be in Czech.

Denmark

In general, there are no statutory language requirements, and employment contracts may be provided in any relevant language provided that the individual employee understands the language of the contract. However, special rules do apply with regard to stock options. In this case, legislation requires that the central terms of a stock option scheme be provided to employees in Danish.

Finland

Finland's official languages are Finnish and Swedish. However, employment contracts may be in another language understood by the employee.

France

All employment documents must be drafted in French in order to be binding.

Germany

No statutory requirements. Employees are often open to English agreements or policies. In case of litigation, the courts will request official translations.

Hong Kong, SAR

No statutory requirements.

Hungary

The employment contract is only valid if the contracting parties understand the language in which it is written.

India

The contract must be in a language understood by both contracting parties. Contracts are generally in English, provided both parties understand it.

Indonesia

Written agreements must be in the Indonesian language, using the Latin alphabet, as Article 28 (1) of Presidential Regulation No. 63 of 2019 on the Use of the Indonesian Language requires such language to be used in official communications in the workplaces of government offices and private entities. The regulation is silent on any sanction for failing to comply. However, the Indonesian language will prevent employees from claiming that they do not fully understand the information or that they were not informed by the company properly. Dual-language contracts may be prepared, but the Indonesian language provisions will prevail.

Ireland

No statutory requirement. Usually provided in English. Should be in a language the employee can understand.

Israel

In a language understood by the employee. As a common best practice, it is recommended that all documents will be in English, provided that employee positions require a working knowledge and use of English.

Italy

No statutory requirements, but all documents should be in Italian.

Japan

The employment agreement and work rules should be provided in the language that is understandable to the employees. If work rules are in a foreign language, a Japanese translation must be filed with the bureau.

Kenya

No statutory requirements. It is common practice for all official documents to be in English. Statute, however, requires illiterate employees to have the provisions of their employment contracts explained to them in a language they understand.

Kuwait

Pursuant to the Labor Law, all employment contracts and records must be in Arabic. Where a foreign language is used in addition to Arabic, the Arabic version shall prevail in case of a dispute.

Luxembourg

There is no specific requirement as far as the language is concerned, but the contract must be in a language understood by all the parties. English is commonly used and generally accepted by the courts.

Malaysia

No statutory requirements other than the requirement for the data privacy consent/notice document pursuant to the Personal Data Protection Act to be in both English and Bahasa Malaysia. It is standard market practice for employment agreements or policies and other employee communications to be in English.

Mexico

No statutory requirements. However, Spanish is recommended as Mexican authorities require all employment documents to be in Spanish or translated into Spanish.

Morocco

No statutory language requirement in Morocco, but the official language is Arabic. French is also acceptable as a language for an employment agreement, provided that the employee speaks French. English is rarely used but may be tolerated in certain circumstances.

Mozambique

Although not required by law, all employment contracts should be in Portuguese, especially because of labor inspections. It is common to use bilingual employment contracts (eg, Portuguese and English).

Myanmar

Although not specified, an employment contract needs to be in a language understood by both parties, so dual language is advisable (English and Burmese).

Netherlands

No statutory requirements, although the employer must make sure that the employee understands the relevant provisions.

New Zealand

No statutory requirements, but all documents should be in English.

Nigeria

No statutory language requirement in Nigeria, but the official language is English.

Norway

No statutory requirements. Documents may be in English, provided that the employees have sufficient understanding of English.

Oman

Pursuant to the Labor Law, all employment contracts and records must be in Arabic. Where a foreign language is used in addition to Arabic, the Arabic version will prevail.

Peru

The official language is Spanish. Any employment-related document (eg, employment agreement or contract) must be in Spanish to be valid. If the employment-related document is in a foreign language, in case of a dispute, such document must be translated by an official accredited translator.

Philippines

No statutory requirements. English is acceptable.

Poland

Statutory requirement to draft employment-related documents in Polish in order for them to be binding. Possibility to prepare these documents in a bilingual (eg, Polish-English) version; however, in the case of any discrepancies, the Polish version will prevail.

Portugal

No statutory requirements, and employees are often open to English agreements or policies. However, it is advisable to draft the employment contract in Portuguese or adopt a bilingual template as, in case of litigation, the courts will require a Portuguese version or official translation.

Qatar

Pursuant to the Labor Law, all employment contracts and records must be in Arabic. Where a foreign language is used in addition to Arabic, the Arabic version shall prevail.

Romania

There is a statutory requirement to execute individual employment agreements in Romanian; a bilingual format, including a Romanian language version, is also possible. It is not a statutory requirement for internal regulations or policies to be in Romanian, but this is strongly recommended.

Russia

No statutory requirements, but all documents should be in Russian or bilingual so that they may be presented to the Russian authorities without translation if necessary.

Saudi Arabia

Arabic is the prevailing language in KSA, though a contract may be established using another language. It is common practice in the KSA to produce a bilingual contract with the Arabic and English texts written in 1 document. In case of a labor dispute, all proceedings will be conducted in Arabic, and all documents, including the employment contract, must be submitted in Arabic. Even if the parties specify otherwise, the Arabic text will always prevail. English may be used for interpretation purposes where ambiguity in Arabic exists, though an administrative official or judge is not obligated to do so.

Singapore

No specific requirements to be complied with, though contracts are generally in English.

Slovak Republic

Written legal documents relevant to employment relations must be in the Slovak language. Text in another language with identical content may be provided alongside the text in the Slovak language.

South Africa

When rights of employees are affected, employers are required to ensure that the employees understand the action taken, or information imparted. This may require that information be supplied in a language that the employees can understand. Disciplinary proceedings may be considered unfair if conducted in a language with which the employee is insufficiently familiar to enable effective participation in the proceedings. Translators must then be supplied.

South Korea

No language requirements.

Spain

The basic copy of the employment agreement (copia basica) must be in Spanish. The official template employment contract is provided by the Employment Office in Spanish only. If companies issue additional employment agreements, they may technically be in any language, but a Spanish version is highly recommended as, in case of conflict, the judge will make a decision based on the Spanish translation.

Sweden

No statutory requirements, but it would be advisable to ensure that all employees understand the language of the documents provided.

Switzerland

No statutory requirements.

Taiwan, Republic of China

No statutory requirements, but any supporting documents must be presented to the courts in Chinese in the case of any disputes.

Thailand

No statutory requirement except for work rules which must be in Thai and in compliance with the LPA.

Tunisia

Contracts can be written in the desired language however, only Arabic and French are accepted by the public authorities (Arabic being the official language).

Turkey

Employment contracts must be in Turkish if they are executed by and between employees who are Turkish citizens and businesses incorporated under Turkish law. However, employment contracts may be drafted in a dual-column format in Turkish and any other language, but the Turkish version is the prevailing language.

Uganda

No statutory requirements. It is common for agreements to be in English. Where the employee does not understand the language in which the agreement is drafted, the agreement must be attested to. A magistrate or labor officer draws up a written document ascertaining that the employee has freely consented to the contract and that their consent has not been obtained by coercion, undue influence, misrepresentation or mistake; that the contract complies with the Employment Act; and that the labor officer is satisfied that the employee has duly understood the terms of the contract before giving their final agreement to it.

Ukraine

All employment documents and internal regulations must be in Ukrainian or bilingual, if needed.

United Arab Emirates

Pursuant to the Labor Law, all employment contracts and records must be in Arabic. In practice, however, English documentation is used in many businesses onshore. The MOHRE standard contract is now issued in dual English and Arabic and dual with other popular largely South Asian languages. Where a foreign language is used in addition to Arabic, the Arabic version will prevail.

In free zones, the Arabic language requirement is not always enforced, although employment documentation must be in a language that the employee can understand.

In the event of a dispute, any document used in the courts must be translated into Arabic and, again, the official translation in Arabic will prevail.

United Kingdom

No statutory requirements, but all documents should be in English.

United States

Certain documents and notices are required to be posted or provided in the language known to be the primary language of a certain percentage of the workforce or of specific employees, if other than English. "English-only" policies in the workplace may be subject to legal challenge as discriminatory, unless there is legitimate business purpose for the rule.

Venezuela

Employment contracts and all other work-related manuals, policies, guidelines and regulations must be in Spanish. In exceptional cases as required, these documents may be drafted in local native languages which are acknowledged as official languages under the labor law.

Vietnam

No statutory language requirements exist. However, in the event of dispute, the labor courts review documents in Vietnamese only.