Monday, November 28, 2011

Little Diddy on the FAR and Kuwait Labor Law: Overtime Charging

A little note on contracting.  I thought I would throw it out there for companies who have proposed and won contracts - and must abide by both the FAR and Kuwait Labor Law. 

Note that the stipulation of a work week in Kuwait is 48 hours in Kuwait.  Anything over 48 hours is subject to overtime.  The Kuwait Labor Law is very specific about how many hours of overtime an employee can work - and the reporting procedures that an employer must follow.  Employees can not be forced to work overtime and they must be compensated.

Many seemingly innocent USG contractors working in Kuwait should be aware of this....  Many contractors have also written yearly salary increases (or COLA)  into their contracts and perhapsee the employees aren't receiving them.  Wouldn't that be fraud?  Gee, I would think so if it was written into a contract and then the employees didn't receive it; instead the difference was being pocketed.... hmmmmm

I am guessing this is how several large defense contractors assumed they could get away with being the lowest bidder.

Now, if I were on a task force or audit team, I would first randomly (and without prior notification) ask contractor's employees how many hours they work and if they receive annual increases (perhaps saying something like lying is against the law... yada.)   Then, I would ask to see a company's overtime and time & attendance logs. A random sampling should give you an indication of if the company is on the up and up or not.

Here we go, kids....


Subpart 22.1—Basic Labor Policies

22.103  Overtime.

22.103-1  Definition.
“Normal workweek,” as used in this subpart, means, generally, a workweek of 40 hours. Outside the United States and its outlying areas, a workweek longer than 40 hours is considered normal if—

(1) The workweek does not exceed the norm for the area, as determined by local custom, tradition, or law; and

(2) The hours worked in excess of 40 in the workweek are not compensated at a premium rate of pay. "

"Kuwait Labor Law

Section  Two
Working hours and weekends

Article (64}

Without prejudice  to the provisions of Article (21) of this Law, it is forbidden to allow workers to work for more than 48 hours per week or 8 hours a day, except in such events as are specified in this Law. Working hours during the month of Ramadan shall be equal to 36 hours per week.

Article (65}

a-            Workers shall not be required to work for more than five consecutive hours a day without a break of a minimum of one hour that is not included in the working hours.

The Financial, commercial and investment sectors shall be excluded from this provision  and the working hours  shall be equal to eight  consecutive hours.

Article (66}

Without  prejudice  to Articles  (21) and (64)  of this Law, the employer  may,  by means of a written order, have workers work overtime if the necessity arises for the purpose of preventing a dangerous accident, repairing damages arising from such accident, avoiding a loss or facing an unusual work load. The overtime work should not exceed two hours a day, a maximum of 180 hours a year, three days a week or 90 days a year. The worker shall have the right to prove by any means that the employer required him to perform additional works for an additional period of time. The worker shall also be entitled to a 25 percent increase over his original remuneration for the period of overtime.

This  remuneration  shall  be  in  conformity  with  Article  (56)  of  this Law.  The employer  shall  keep  a  special  record  for  overtime  work  showing  the  dates, number of hours worked and remunerations paid in consideration of the additional work assigned to the worker."


Angelo your friend in FB said...

I try to tell some of my Filipino friends about these laws, but they say when they complain or file a case, they get rebuked and wind up losing their jobs, so they just take the abuse. I cannot believe the crap they endure with these Kuwaiti companies. Overtime without extra pay, no breaks, days off taken away, passports kept, being called at any hour to work, poor living conditions.

Anonymous said...

Is the overtime for holidays and weekends even counted higher than just 1 for 1?

Anonymous said...

we work 9am-9pm,2hrs break but we are not paid on 4hrs.they are not following the labor laws,we cannot do anything because our passport are kept by our employer,holidays are regular pay

Anonymous said...


By law, companies are not allowed to hold passports from any nationality. If any of my fellow expats are facing this dilemma, you can report this to the ministry of social affairs and labor and they will have your passport handed to you on the spot. They will have a committee of three accompany you to your employer and witness that they have handed your passport back to you and give your employer a warning, probably a fine if its not the first offense. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

FAR or DFARS 252.222-7002 Is in every contract on the military bases I have researched so far here in Kuwait. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. This is regards to compliance with labor laws overseas. Google it! Know your rights.

The latest thing I have heard on the street. KBR still has many of their employees working at the APOD with 14 visit visas and flies their people out every 90 days. First they had NCC or National Cleaning Company for the sponsor. Salary statements, 250 kd per month.
They did not even come close to the labor laws. Then they switched to KRH. 14 visas and falsified salary statements as well. Oh, KBR flew folks out after the visas expired thinking they could just pay the fines and it would be cool. One group got deported trying to come back in. The deportation is for a year! Nice job there lowest bidder! Now they have changed to The Bridge Company. Same shit! 250 kd salary statements, 14 visit visas and flying people.out and back in. As not following the Kuwait labor laws. I have copies of their contract from The first question asked that with in the minutes of the meeting was, "Is it true that we have to follow the local labor laws in Kuwait?" KBR had Ron Marone there as signing into that meeting. They know better!

People. If you do not contact the DOD INSPECTOR GENERAL, a lawyer in Kuwait ain't cheap, and court in Kuwait seems to take about three years until you get paid. That nasty wasta thing seems to drag it out a bit. Keep a copy of your contracts. The sponsor is REQUIRED by Kuwait law to give each employee a copy of the salary statement. Do not let them tell you that you cannot deposit money into an account in Kuwait or that you sponsor will jot open an account for you. It is required by Kuwait law that they do. If you sue for your right you need all of your banking statements!!!!! You w-2 can help as well.

I will post more in a bit. Time for Taco Bell!