As a female employee, it is essential to have sufficient time off from work as and when needed for maternity reasons. Here, we shall discuss in detail the terms and conditions of the maternity leave policy, as well as general gender policies in Qatar, according to their labor law.
Wages or Salary
A working woman is entitled to receive the same salary or wages as a man if she is performing the same work. The fact that a woman is or might get pregnant in the future should not affect her compensation.
According to the labor law of Qatar, women are not allowed to be employed in dangerous or hazardous work environments that may pose a threat to their morals or health, especially if they are pregnant. This decision, however, may change if the Minister permits.
A female employee who has been employed for at least a full year is entitled to receive a 100% paid maternity leave for 50 days. This time period includes the time before and after delivery under the condition that the maternity leave after birth should be no less than 35 days. This rule applies to foreign female workers as well. Some companies may offer an even longer period of maternity leave. Although there is no leave period for fathers, some companies do offer 3 to 5 paid paternity leave days to men.
Maternity leave is allowed on the basis of an authentic certificate issued by a licensed doctor. The certificate must state the expected date of delivery. If the remaining number of days of paid maternity leave after delivery is less than 30, the employee has the option to opt for a complimentary period from annual leave.
If the medical condition of an employee after childbirth does not deem her fit for work after the expiry of the maternity leave period, the worker is allowed to be on leave for 60 additional days without pay. In addition, a medical certificate is required by a licensed doctor to approve the additional leaves.
After the maternity period has ended, nursing women are entitled to one hour per day in order to nurse their children. The nursing hour can be determined by the female worker according to her convenience. The nursing period will be included in the working hours and may not be deducted from the salary.
The employer has no right to terminate or nullify the working contract of a female worker for using the complete period of maternity leave or due to her marriage. In case termination is required, the employer may not notify the female worker during the time period of the leave and must wait until her return.
The maternity law of Qatar allows its female workers to work independently and freely at the workplace. The maternity leave policy is relatively fair and generous and includes margins for flexibility under unforeseen circumstances.