Attn Saudi Expat Workers: MHRSD defines eligibility for job transfer

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Saudi Arabia
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Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development has elaborated on the conditions which make an expatriate worker qualified to utilize the “job mobility” (transfer of jobs) benefits offered by the Kingdom in its latest labor reforms declared earlier this week.

Conditions to Qualify for Job Mobility 

  1. The subject should be an expatriate professional who is subject to Saudi Arabian laws.
  2. The individual should have completed a minimum of one year with the current employer after his initial arrival in the country.
  3. The subject should have a valid documented work contract for his engagement with the current employer.

Clarity on transfer fees & Status of Visa

The Ministry emphasized that there are no additional fees to be paid other than what is in place currently.

The authority clarified that the shift from one job to another will not affect the status of issued visas, which will be in accordance with the mechanism that is currently in force.

Transfer Process 

The new prospective employer will have to submit a job offer through the ministry’s Qiwa online platform which will be subsequently sent to the current employer for the transfer of service request with a notification on the notice period.

Employers eligible for requesting a transfer 

The prospective employer should be capable to obtain visas according to the rules and regulations in compliance with the wage protection program, as well as the regulations of the contract documentation, digitization program, and self-evaluation.

When can an employee move to a new job without the permission of the current employer?

  1. Absence of a valid documented work contract even after 3 months since the employee entered into the Kingdom.
  2. The failure of the employer to pay the worker’s wages for three consecutive months.
  3. The absence of the employer because of travel, imprisonment, death or any other reasons.
  4. In the event of the expiry of an expatriate worker’s job permit or residency permit (iqama).

Extraordinary conditions for the transfer of job 

  1. When the worker’s lodges a complaint about the involvement of the current employer in the illegal business ventures (tasattur) provided that the worker is not involved in the violation of laws.
  2. If the worker has proof that the current employer is involved in trafficking in persons.
  3. The current employer or his representative fails to attend two sessions of labor dispute legal litigation despite being notified of the hearing dates.
  4. The current employer or his representative fails to attend two sessions for amicable settlement of labor disputes.