The Saudi labor system sets many controls and laws that regulate work and the relationship between the employer and the worker, and ensure that the worker obtains all his rights, the most important of which is annual leave, which guarantees the worker comfort and balance between professional and personal life. Therefore, it was necessary to shed light on annual leave in the Saudi labor system . Its duration, and all details related to it.


Annual leave work system


What is the annual leave stipulated in the Saudi Labor Law?


  • It is paid leave in advance for full pay that the worker receives in the year of entitlement.
  • The worker is entitled to an annual leave of 21 days if he continues to work for less than 5 years, and the period of annual leave increases to 30 days if the worker spends 5 years working in the organization.
  • The worker may postpone the annual leave until the following year, and the employer can postpone the annual leave after the end of the year in which it is entitled, depending on the circumstances of the work, provided that the worker obtains it before the end of the year following the year in which the annual leave is entitled.


Article 109 of the Saudi Labor Law


Article 109 of the Saudi Labor Law stipulates that the worker be granted annual leave of no less than 21 days and no more than 30 days when the worker continues to work for the establishment for a period of five continuous years, as Article 109 indicates:


  • The worker must benefit from annual leave every year whose duration ranges between 21-30 days.
  • The possibility of the worker obtaining leave, and the loss of the employer’s authority to prevent the worker from obtaining leave or suspending it for illegal reasons.
  • The worker has the right to postpone annual leave for a period of three months, and it cannot be increased if he completes a full year of work for the employer.


When is an employee entitled to annual leave?


The employee is entitled to annual leave after the end of his first year of work at the establishment, where he can obtain annual leave according to the provisions and laws stipulated in the Saudi Labor System, which clarify the worker’s entitlement to annual leave for a period of 21 days and not to exceed 30 days after the passage of five consecutive years. To serve the worker in the facility, provided that the leave is with pay.

The employer may set the annual leave date in accordance with work requirements, and it may also be set on a rotating basis to ensure continuity of work in the facility, but the employer must notify the worker of the annual leave date sufficiently at least 30 days in advance to inform him of the matter.


Transferring the leave balance to the work system


Can annual leave be carried over or postponed? One of the questions that concern those wishing to know the extent of the legality of this step in the Saudi labour system is whether the Saudi Labor Law allows for the carryover or postponement of annual leave as follows:


  • The worker has the right to carry over the annual leave or days thereof to the year following the year of entitlement, after agreement with the employer.
  • The employer has the right to postpone the worker’s annual leave after the year of entitlement for a period of 90 days at most, if the need at work requires that the leave be transferred, provided that the worker’s written consent is obtained.
  • The employer may continue to postpone leave depending on work conditions, provided that the period of postponement does not exceed the end of the year following the year of entitlement.
  • The employee is entitled to receive pay for accrued vacation days, which he did not receive upon leaving work.
  • In the event of an overlap between the specified annual leave and holiday and event leave, the annual leave will be extended by the days of holiday and event leave.


Annual leave system in the private sector for Saudis


The Labor Law in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia regulates the rights of workers to annual leave in all sectors, as it includes texts and laws that clarify the number of days of annual leave for workers in the government sector and the characteristics of annual leave for workers in the private sector. The Saudi Labor Law regulates the annual leave system for the private sector for Saudis as well. follows:


  • The annual leave system for Saudis in the private sector is consistent with the Saudi Labor Law in Article 109, which stipulates that annual leave shall be paid leave for all workers, whether in the public or private sector.
  • The Labor Council leave system in the private sector gives employees the opportunity to submit a leave application signed by the employer as proof of his approval to take leave.
  • The Saudi Labor Law does not recognize the agreement between the employer and the worker to waive the latter’s right to annual leave, as it is one of the worker’s rights that can be postponed but not cancelled.
  • The Saudi labor law gives the employer the right to deduct the wages of the vacation days that the worker receives if the worker works elsewhere. Then the labor law allows the employer to deduct vacation wages for the remaining days of annual leave.


Penalty of preventing the worker from obtaining annual leave


What are the effects of not allowing the worker to take his leave? The important question that can be answered by clarifying the violations and penalties imposed according to the provisions of the Saudi Labor Law for an employer who does not adhere to the law.

The Minister of Labor and Social Development in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia issued a table of violations and penalties for violating the provisions of the Saudi Labor Law. This table includes the penalty for the employer to pay a fine of 10,000 Saudi riyals, in the event of non-compliance with the vacations prescribed in the labour system for workers. The financial fine is doubled by the increase in the number of workers who They did not get their vacations scheduled for them in the system.


Is the weekly rest included in the annual leave calculation?


The Saudi Labor Law imposes annual leave for workers in the government and the private sector on the basis that the leave is based on calendar days, including weekly vacations. If the worker applies for leave from Thursday to Sunday, the weekly rest days are deducted from it, because the leave includes a weekly rest. However, if the Weekly rest days at the end of the vacation or before it are not counted as vacation days.

The decision issued by the Ministry of Labor and Social Development stipulates that if Friday and Saturday are included in the annual leave, the remaining days are counted as vacation days. However, if the employment contract or labor system regulations stipulate that the weekend days are work days, the scheduled vacation days are not counted as vacation days.


Calculating the annual leave balance upon resignation or retirement


How are the worker’s vacations calculated upon resignation or retirement? The Saudi Labor Law obliges the employer to compensate the worker for the annual leave that he did not take in the year it was due upon resignation or end of service.

The balance of annual leave is calculated by calculating the worker’s daily wage according to the last wage he received from the employer, provided that this wage is multiplied by the number of days of leave due to the worker that he did not obtain during his work for the employer, taking into account the number of scheduled annual leave days. In the work system, which ranges between 21 days – 30 days depending on the years of service.

In conclusion, we would like to point out the importance of annual leave for workers, as it gives them the opportunity to rest and renew their vitality and activity to return again to work with greater energy to perform the tasks and work assigned to them with the highest efficiency. Leave must be managed carefully and accurately to be consistent with the Saudi labor system in a way that ensures that workers obtain their rights. The employer’s implementation of his duties.

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