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No Objection Rule in Qatar!

Discussion in 'Teaching overseas' started by Mr.Chips, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. Can someone confirm what the 2 year exit rule is if a No Objection isn't received from your current/past employer when starting work elsewhere in Qatar please? I recently heard that they're thinking of scrapping it altogether to give workers freedom to move jobs and make the labour market more user friendly. Then again it took ceturies for slavery where a similar master servant contract persisted, to be eradicated. This may take some time too.
     
  2. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Yes, ladybump, I would agree that Doha has more than its fair share of dodgy schools. Discovering that your school does not give NOCs is just one of the little surprises in store for many young teachers. On the other hand, it is important to remember that there are plenty of positive things about working in Qatar, even if you are at a bad school. Loads of teachers in the UK are unemployed or else they are working in schools that require mountains of paperwork. Some of the posts on the "Unemployed Teachers" forum are very sad and depressing, while a lot of the ones on the NQT forum are not exactly cheerful. Therefore I would say that being a teacher in a naff school in Doha may actually not be quite so bad. Last but not least, it is good to remember that here in Doha petrol is about 20p a litre and there are no blooming Olympics and no Council Tax.
    The NOC thing can be a pain, admittedly, but I would say that most teachers who decide to leave their school in Qatar will not have this problem because they will want to leave Qatar completely and go to Thailand or Chile or somewhere completely different.
     
  3. serverservant

    serverservant New commenter

    This is my understanding of the NOC situation, in Q & A form:
    You must work for 2 years before being able to get an NOC? - True, two years is the standard minimum service required before you can consider changing jobs.
    So that means you'll get one after two years?- NO. It means you can ask/try and get one, but the schools can (and many do) refuse.
    But Ill know where I stand from my contract? MAYBE. Some schools make it black and white. Others leave it as you MAY get an NOC at the DISCRETION of the school management.
    If I dont get the NOC what can I do?- Legally, nothing. You leave Qatar and come back after a period of at least 2 Years.
    But what about if I have finance and the school moves me on? Surely then I can get an NOC? Possibly. Depends on the school policy. Dont count on it though.
    What happens if Im laid off, owe 30,000 Riyal on a car, cant sell it and dont have the chance to work to pay it off? Youll need a lawyer and alot of persuasion to allow you to work again.
    Qatari Law is like slave labour - No not really. Every school will give exit permits at holidays when you request them. Some may pay you upon return, but all will release you. The Exit Permit is a system designed to stop westerners bailing out of Qatar owing thousands a la Dubai not so long ago. Personally, I understand the logic of it.
    ANY ADVICE?
    Yes, plenty.
    1. Assume in your planning an NOC wont be possible. That way, it becomes less of a pain if it isnt.
    2. Never get credit beyond the balance of your bank account, in case you need to leave. Its called financial prudency.
    3. Enjoy your time in Qatar. Life is what you make it.
     
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    A masterful summary, serverservant. Excellent!
     
  5. At one time I know certain folk used to return with renewed passports thereby averting their original Passport ID records. Fingerprinting and other checks prevent that nowadays. So serverservant is absolutely spot on with his comments.
     
  6. I left for 4 years and returned to a different employer CHANGED my name to my married name and as my residency was taking longer than other peoples I was told it was because they had discovered my previous visa and were checking it - on recieving my new visa it had my previous photo on it - so not sure that these days the new passport thing would work (mine was new passport). My previous school also used to give Letters Of No Objection until one day it was loosing too many staff to other school and they started saying no. I would say expect to go somewhere else overseas after - the year you decide to leave sell your car early and rent.
     
  7. Does No Objection rule stop you returning to UK if you want?
    Suppose you needed early release from a contract to return to your home country, can they stop you?
     
  8. Horses for courses as I understand. The No Objection Rule has its basis for the very reason that companies would spend a fortune getting employees out only to find certain individuals would disappear and not complete the very agreements they signed for. I think unless you have a genuine enough and sound reason and that equally is at the discretion of the company's bosses its a debateable situation and no real answer as to whether you;d get the certificate. To return anywhere one needs a No Objection letter from the previous company if employment is taken up elsewhere within 2 years of leaving as I understand.
     
  9. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    I think there's some misunderstanding here.
    The No Objection letter is a letter that your employer gives (or doesn't give) when you are done working for them. This could be at the planned end of your contract, or earlier if you have to leave earlier. The letter gives permission for you to work for another employer in Qatar. Without the letter, you cannot work in Qatar for a period of 2 years.
    The letter has nothing to do with returning to your home country. And that's where things get a little murky. A naughty employer may try to prevent you from leaving Qatar, either during or after your contract, but in the end they won't be able to do so for long, particularly if you have finished your contract. As a Westener, your embassy would help you. And realistically, as a Westener, cases like this are rare. It is more common for employers to pull this nonsense with other nationalities, as their embassies have less pull and the employees have fewer resources and less power.
    The better employers are generally very reasonable about your need to go home, whether for a quick visit or in case you need to terminate a contract early. They have the power to make it difficult for you, but most wouldn't, and in the end it wouldn't be impossible.
    Unless of course, you get in trouble with the law, and then you can't leave until your case is resolved.
     
  10. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    I know of one gentleman whose legal case has now been dragging on for three years.
     
  11. After speaking with quiet a few folk most still seem to be of the opinion that if one honours ones contract then the school would have a very weak case not to issue an NOC if pressed.
     
  12. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    And now I think we have a misunderstanding of 'basic rights'. Check out the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
    http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml
    You have the right not to be enslaved. As in, the right not to be forced to work, nor to work for free, etc.
    Leaving a job is a right, by extension, though it is limited by contract and local laws. (As the right to free speech is limited by not being allowed to yell fire in a movie theater.)
    Leaving a job and being allowed to take another one in the same country is not a right. It is a privilege. As is working and living in a country in which you do not hold citizenship. We are guests who chose to come. We do not make the decisions about how the country should be run. We just decide whether to come or not.
    Needing an NOC is, for you, a Western, presumably white, college educated professional, a First World Problem.
    For many of the workers here, facing the racism that does exist, and not having the ability to get a better position, nor the resources to fight very difficult situations... for them it is a much bigger deal.
    So yes, it does irk me to hear someone with our privileges whining about this on a personal level. If you don't like the NOC rule, avoid it. Work elsewhere where it doesn't apply. You have the power, the resources, the ability. Or decide that it is part of the deal of coming here, and deal with it.
    And spend some time fighting for the rights of people who are truly being denied their rights. Instead of inventing new rights for yourself and complaining they're being violated.
    Rant over. I'll probably regret this later, so apologies in advance.

     

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