Kuwait

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Country Snapshot

The GPS Country Snapshot includes 25 sections of information about labor law compliance in Kuwait. See a sample of popular sections below.

Termination of Employment

Per Kuwaiti labor law, an indefinite term employment contract can be terminated by providing advance notice as follows:

  • The notice period is 3 months for employees earning a monthly remuneration.
  • The notice period is 1 month for all other employees.

The notice period can be waived by paying remuneration in lieu of the prescribed notice period.

If the party wishing to terminate the contract does not abide by the notice period, that party shall be obliged to pay compensation for the notice period equal to the employee's remuneration for the same period.

Work Permits

Employers are prohibited from employing expatriate employees unless authorized by the relevant authorities. Foreign nationals who wish to work in Kuwait are required to obtain a work permit. The following documents must be submitted:

  • Signed application
  • Salary certificate from the Labor Inspection Department
  • Copy of educational qualification certificates
  • Copy of the employer's civil card
  • Copy of the employee's passport
  • Copy of the employee's driver's license from their country of origin
  • Copy of any professional license
  • Proof of payment of a fee.

The permit is valid for an initial duration of 5 years and is renewable.

Paid Annual Leave

Kuwaiti labor law provides a paid maternity leave of 70 days to pregnant employees. The employee may take a maximum of 30 days of maternity leave before the date of delivery and 40 days after delivery. The employee is entitled to 100% of their earnings during maternity leave. The employer is responsible for paying these maternity benefits. After the end of maternity leave, the employer may give the working woman, at her request, unpaid leave for a period not exceeding 4 months to care for the baby.

The employer may not terminate a woman's services during this leave or while the employee is absent from work due to a sickness corroborated by a medical certificate explaining that the illness resulted from pregnancy or childbirth.

Working Hours

Kuwait's labor law stipulates that the maximum working hours for private and public sector employees are 48 hours per week and eight hours per day. The maximum working hours are 36 per week during the month of Ramadan. Employees working more than this number of weekly or daily hours are eligible for overtime. Employees in the public sector are not allowed to work for more than two overtime hours per day.

Juveniles shall work for maximum of 6 hours per day, and must not be employed for more than 4 hours straight, followed by a break of not less than 1 hour. 

Maternity Leave

Kuwaiti labor law provides a paid maternity leave of 70 days to pregnant employees. The employee may take a maximum of 30 days of maternity leave before the date of delivery and 40 days after delivery. The employee is entitled to 100% of their earnings during maternity leave. The employer is responsible for paying these maternity benefits. After the end of maternity leave, the employer may give the working woman, at her request, unpaid leave for a period not exceeding 4 months to care for the baby.

The employer may not terminate a woman's services during this leave or while the employee is absent from work due to a sickness corroborated by a medical certificate explaining that the illness resulted from pregnancy or childbirth.

Minimum Wage

Per Kuwait's labor law, all employees must receive at least the minimum wage. This wage is set by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs at least once every five years. It was last set to KWD 75 (Kuwaiti dinars) per month in 2017.

Country Profile

The GPS Country Profile contains detailed information on over 60 topics related to labor law compliance within Kuwait.
  • Type of Employment Relationship
  • Permanent Employment
  • Fixed-Term or Specific-Purpose Contracts
  • Temporary Employment Contracts
  • Part-time Employment
  • Young Worker Employment
  • Vendors and Independent Contractors
  • Types of Contracts
  • Probationary Period
  • Termination of the Contract of Employment
  • Grounds for Termination
  • Notice of Dismissal
  • Fair Dismissal
  • Redundancy
  • Unfair Dismissal
  • Suspension of Contract of Employment
  • Severance Benefits
  • Hours of Work
  • Work Week and Timekeeping
  • Night Work and Shift Work
  • Overtime
  • Remote Work
  • Required Time Off
  • Public Holidays
  • Annual Leave
  • Sick Leave
  • Maternity
  • Other Forms of Leave
  • Social Insurance and Retirement
  • Social Security Contribution
  • National Retirement Scheme
  • Dependents’/Survivors Benefit
  • Life and Disability Insurance/Benefit
  • Statutory Allowances
  • Compensation and Benefits
  • Minimum Wage (Basic Wage)
  • Bonuses, Profit Sharing and Other Compensation
  • Medical Insurance
  • Work Environment
  • Workplace Safety and Health
  • Prohibition of Discrimination
  • Prohibition of Harassment
  • Data Protection and Privacy
  • Whistleblowers and Retaliation
  • Workers’ representation in the organization
  • Freedom of Association
  • Registration and Recognition of Unions
  • Trade Union Personality
  • Collective Bargaining and Agreements
  • Disputes and Settlements
  • Strikes and Lockouts
  • Unfair Labor Practices
  • Taxation of Compensation and Benefits
  • Income Tax
  • Taxation of Employee Benefits
  • Tax Filing and Payment Procedures
  • Double Tax Relief and Tax Treaties
  • Visas and Work Permits
  • Visas
  • Work Permits and Residence Permits

 Country Snapshot

Get the full Country Snapshot with 25 sections of information about labor law in Kuwait.