Qatar – Employer of Record / PEO

Qatar – Employer of Record

Globalization Partners provides employer of record services for clients that want to hire employees and run payroll without first establishing a branch office or subsidiary in Qatar. Your candidate is hired via Globalization Partners’ Qatar PEO in accordance with local labor laws and can be onboarded in days instead of the months it typically takes. The individual is assigned to work on your team, working on your company’s behalf exactly as if he or she were your employee to fulfill your in-country requirements.

Our Global Employer of Record Platform™ and Global PEO service enables clients to run payroll in Qatar while HR services, tax, and compliance management matters are lifted from their shoulders onto ours. As a Global PEO expert, we manage employment contract best practices, statutory and market norm benefits, and employee expenses, as well as severance and termination if required. We also keep you apprised of changes to local employment laws in Qatar.

Your new employee is productive sooner, has a better hiring experience and is 100% dedicated to your team. You’ll have peace of mind knowing you have a team of dedicated employment experts assisting with every hire. Globalization Partners allows you to harness the talent of the brightest people in 150 countries around the world, quickly and painlessly.

Qatar is a small country in southwest Asia that occupies a peninsula in the Persian Gulf and shares a border with Saudi Arabia. Its land area comprises only about 4,000 square miles. While 1.8 million people reside in Qatar, only 278,000 of them are citizens; the rest are expats.

When negotiating terms of an employment contract and offer letter with an employee in Qatar, it may be useful to keep the following standard benefits in Qatar in mind:

Basic Facts About Hiring in Qatar

Visa Sponsorship in Qatar: Approximately 90% of the workforce in Qatar is composed of foreign nationals.  As such, almost all of our clients need Globalization Partners to sponsor the work permit for an employee in Qatar in addition to putting the employee on a local payroll.  This is a regular part of our service and can normally be arranged.  In some cases, the nationality or work history of an employee may need to be confirmed before we can confirm if our local company can sponsor the visa.

When negotiating with a candidate in Qatar, we recommend clarifying whether the employer will sponsor only the employee’s work and residency permit, or whether the Company will also sponsor the candidate’s family’s residency permits. For professional employees, it is common for the employer to sponsor the residency permit for the spouse and children.

For the purpose of this summary, we have assumed that our clients will be hiring white-collar, third country nationals or US expatriates in Qatar and sponsoring work permits.

When negotiating terms of an employment contract and offer letter with an employee in Qatar, it may be useful to keep the following standard benefits in Qatar in mind:

Public Holidays in Qatar

  • 3 working days each for Eid Al Fitr and Eid Al Adha
  • 1 working day for the Independence Day
  • 1 working day for National Sports Day
  • 3 working days as specified by the employer

Bonus in Qatar

It is not legally required to pay a 13th month bonus on top of salary in Qatar.

Working Hours in Qatar

The maximum is 48 hours per week, 8 hours per day.  During Ramadan this is reduced to 36 hours per week, 6 hours per day.

Vacation in Qatar

Statutory Minimum:  an employee who has completed one year of continuous service is entitled to annual leave with pay as follows:

1 to 5 years’ service:                       3 weeks paid leave

5 years’ service or more:               4 weeks paid leave

This is prorated for partial years of service.  The employer shall pay the employee before he takes his annual leave.  This will include the sum the employee is entitled to for the work he has performed up to the date of taking the leave in addition to the vacation pay for which the employee is entitled.

Market norm vacation allowance in Qatar is often increased to 4 weeks paid leave for executives.

In addition, employers provide an annual round-trip ticket to an employee’s home country at the time of vacation.  We suggest clarifying with employees whether the annual round-trip ticket will be provided for the entire family or only the employee.

Pilgrimage leave:Muslim employees are entitled to a pilgrimage leave without pay for a maximum of two weeks, once during the period of employment.

Sick Leave in Qatar

Employees in Qatar are entitled to paid sick leave after completing three months in service.  Employees can take up to two weeks.  A medical certificate must be submitted to claim this benefit.

Maternity/Paternity Leave in Qatar

Female employees are entitled to 50 days maternity leave if they have worked for the company for an entire year. Up to 15 days may be taken before the birth and at least 35 days must be taken after. Women are eligible to take additional time as unpaid or as annual leave.

There is no statutory paternity leave, but many companies offer fathers 3 to 5 days of paid leave.

Termination/Severance in Qatar

The maximum probation period is 6 months.  An employee may not be subjected to more than one probation period with the same employer.  The employer may terminate the contract within the probation period with 3 days’ notice if the employer believes the employee is unable to fulfill job duties.

All employees who have completed more than one year of employment at an organization are entitled to end of service benefits in Qatar. The compensation due includes the base wage plus the cost of living allowance, if any, and:

  • 3 weeks for each year of service up to 5 years of continuous service.
  • 4 weeks for each year of service for the second 5 years of continuous service.
  • 5 weeks for each year of service for the following 10 years of service.
  • 6 weeks for each year of service which exceed 20 years of continuous service.

This sum is due to the employee within 7 days of his last working day with the organization.  In practice, most employers provide an amount equivalent to one months’ salary for each year or partial year worked.

In general, a 30 day notice period is required for employees on an indefinite contract if the employee has been employed less than 5 years.  If the period of service is more than five years, the notification period is at least two months prior to the date of termination.

Employers sponsoring work and residency permits bear the expenses of returning the employee to his or her home country, and should ensure that the employee leaves the country within seven days of being issued the exit permit. If this 7-day duration is exceeded, the employer may report this violation to the police or immigration authorities.

Taxes in Qatar

There are no personal income taxes or individual social security tax.

Health Insurance in Qatar

Qataris receive free or heavily subsidized healthcare. Expats will generally want supplemental insurance.

Additional Benefits in Qatar

Supplementary health and life insurance is often provided to employees as a benefit in Qatar.

When negotiating with a candidate, we recommend being clear as to whether health and life insurance benefits will be provided only to the employee or to the employee and family.  Globalization Partners will arrange insurance benefits as a part of our service when setting up the employee on our global employee leasing program.

Total compensation in Qatar normally breaks down into salary, housing allowance, and transportation allowance. Some employees may also negotiate education allowances for their children in Qatar.

In general, we recommend negotiating the total compensation package (a fixed total monthly inclusive of all allowances).  Once the total compensation is negotiated, the local employment contract may break down the total amount into smaller amounts to account for the various allowances as required.

Other allowances and bonuses may often be negotiated for in Qatar, and may be taxable or not depending on the structure.  When assisting clients through our Global Employer of Record Platform, Globalization Partners advises clients on total compensation package every step of the way.

Employment Contracts in Qatar

It’s legally required to put an employment contract in place in Qatar which details the terms of the employee’s compensation, benefits, and termination requirements.  An offer letter and employment contract in Qatar should always state the salary and any compensation amounts in local rather than foreign currency.

This information is provided as general accepted information and is not intended as advisory services.

Why Globalization Partners

Establishing a branch office or subsidiary in Qatar to engage a small team is time consuming, expensive and complex. Qatari labor law has strong worker protections, requiring great attention to detail and an understanding of local best practices. Globalization Partners makes it painless and easy to expand into Qatar. We can help you hire your candidate of choice, handle HR matters and payroll, and ensure that you’re in compliance with local laws, without the burden of setting up a foreign branch office or subsidiary. Our Qatar PEO and Global Employer of Record Platform provides you piece of mind so that you can focus on running your business.

If you would like to discuss how Globalization Partners can provide a seamless employee leasing or PEO solution for hiring employees in Qatar, please contact us at sales@globalization-partners.com.


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