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Qatar Leave Laws & Holidays

Paid Time Off, Vacation, Sick Leave, Maternity Leave, Paternity Leave, Bereavement Leave, Jury Duty Leave, Military Leave, and Voting Leave

Table Of Contents

Last updated on January 3, 2024.

Paid Time Off (PTO) in Qatar

Vacation (Annual Leave) Quota

3 or 4 weeks

Regular employees in Qatar are entitled to at least 3 weeks of paid vacation after 1 year of employment.

However, the exact number of vacation days depends on the number of years of the employee’s service and is as follows:

Total Years of the Employee’s Service Vacation Days
Less than 1 year of service Prorated. The employer determines a certain number of days for vacation.
1 to 5 years of service 3 weeks of vacation
5 or more years of service 4 weeks of vacation

Employees become eligible for a full vacation after 1 full year of continuous work.

This annual leave entitlement puts Qatar in the middle of the list of countries in the world. The United States (no vacation entitlement) and Canada (10 days) are below, but most leave laws in Europe guarantee at least 20 days of vacation, and France and the United Kingdom even more.

A collective bargaining agreement (CBA) may extend the number of vacation days for employees. Employees belonging to Islam have the right to a single unpaid leave of 20 days for a pilgrimage to the holy place of Mecca.

Setting Vacation Dates

The exact dates of vacation are generally agreed upon by an employee and an employer at the start of the new year. An employer schedules the employee’s vacation based on work requirements. With the employee’s agreement, this leave can be split, but not more than two separate periods.

Carry Over

Allowed: up to half of vacation days.

An employee can request, and with mutual consent, carry over up to half of their vacation day to the next year.

Payment of Unused Vacation on Termination

Required by law.

If an employee’s contract ends before taking all their vacation days, he or she must receive compensation equal to their salary for the unused days.

Payout

An employer must provide employees with vacation pay prior to the start of their vacation.

Sick Leave in Qatar

At least 14 days of fully paid leave.

Workers in Qatar are eligible for 14 days (2 weeks) of paid sick leave at 100% of their salary, if they have 3 or more months of service at the company.

A medical certificate from a registered physician must be provided.

If the sick leave is longer than 14 days, employees may take another 4 weeks of half-paid (50% of their salary) absence. Sick leave longer than these 6 weeks is unpaid.

Employers must pay for all medical costs and provide full wage compensation to employees for up to 60 days in cases of occupational (work-related) injuries.

An employee’s service can be terminated after the twelfth week of sick leave, provided a report from a qualified physician confirms the employee’s inability to continue work at that point.

Payout

The employer pays for the sick leave.

The pay-sick rates vary according to the duration of sick leave:

  • The first 2 weeks: 100% of salary
  • The following 4 weeks: 50% of salary
  • More than 6 weeks: Unpaid.

Maternity and Paternity Leave

Maternity Leave in Qatar

50 days

A pregnant employee in Qatar is entitled to 50 days of maternity leave. This period consists of prepartum and postpartum leave, but at least 35 days must be taken after childbirth.

To be eligible for the leave, an employee must have at least one full year of service at the company. Also, a medical certificate from a licensed physician must be presented to the employer.

If a female employee’s medical condition prevents her from returning to work after her maternity leave ends, she will be considered on unpaid leave. This can last for up to 60 days, either continuous or intermittent. However, a licensed physician must provide a medical certificate confirming her condition.

Once the pregnant employee has returned to work, she is entitled to a 1 hour break per day for nursing in the first year after childbirth.

Paternity Leave in Qatar

Paternity leave in Qatar is not required by law. Despite this, most companies allow 5 days of paternity leave after childbirth.

Parental Leave in Qatar

Parental leave in Qatar is not required by law.

Bereavement Leave in Qatar

3 days

An employee is entitled to 3 days of leave in case a close family member dies in the country, for bereavement and funeral attendance. If death happens abroad, they are entitled to 7 days of bereavement leave.

Jury Duty Leave in Qatar

Jury duty leave is not specified by law.

Military Leave in Qatar

Military leave is not specified by law.

Voting Leave in Qatar

Voting leave is not specified by law.

Public Holidays in Qatar for 2024

4 official public holidays recognized by law.

Each year, the local government determines whether holidays that occur on weekends will be observed on a working day instead. Religious holidays, Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, based on the lunar cycle, are only estimated and marked as uncertain. The exact dates are confirmed as the holiday approaches.

Employees are entitled by law to paid leave during the following holidays:

  • Eid EI-Fitr: 3 working days
  • Eid Al-Adha: 3 working days
  • Independence Day: 1 working day
  • National Sports Day
A complete list of holidays celebrated in Qatar in 2024:
Date Holiday
January 1, Moday New Year’s Day
February 13, Tuesday National Sports Day (second Tuesday in February)
April 10 to April 12 Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan)
June 16 to June 19 Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice)
December 18 Qatar National Day (Founder’s Day)
December 31, Tuesday New Year’s Eve 2025

Sources

  1. Labor Law State of Qatar, https://dohape.dfa.gov.ph/images/Logo/forms/LABOUR-LAW-STATE-OF-QATAR.pdf

  2. Local Laws & Regulations, https://www.atlashxm.com/en/countries/qatar

  3. Payroll and Benefits Guide Qatar, https://www.papayaglobal.com/countrypedia/country/qatar

  4. Definitive Guide to Hiring in Qatar, https://www.globalexpansion.com/countrypedia/qatar

Check out our Leave Laws page to learn more about laws in various countries.

All materials have been prepared for general information purposes only to permit you to learn more about this region's leave laws. The information presented is not legal advice, is not to be acted on as such, and may not be current. Please contact your local legal counsel to learn more about the leave laws in your country.

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