Saudi Arabia has resumed hiring domestic workers after a hiatus of nearly seven months, with the partial reopening of the Kingdom’s land, sea, and airports.
The move follows an order from the Minister of Human Resources and Social Development Ahmed Al-Rajhi.
Meanwhile, the ministry’s domestic labor recruitment website Musaned is accepting applications for new contracts until Oct. 31.
The labor ministry suspended the process of hiring domestic workers on March 16 following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
According to the new ministerial directive, the recruitment period for new contracts is 120 days. If a licensed firm fails to recruit the domestic help within 120 days, the contract is automatically extended for 30 more days, with the imposition of a fine amounting to 15 percent of the contract value for the non-compliance of the contractual obligations.
In the event of canceling the contract or the domestic worker failed to arrive before the expiry of the extension period, which is set at 150 days, then the contract will be considered null and void and the licensed firm is obligated to return the contract value to the customer with a delayed penalty of 20 percent of the contract value.
According to the new provisions, the cost of terminating the contract is five percent for the person requesting the cancellation during the period from six to 30 days after concluding the contract while this cost would increase to 10 percent during the period from 31 and 120 days and to 15 percent during 121-150 days and the contract would automatically be canceled after 151 days.
According to the minister’s decision, the competent agency would make the necessary arrangements to deal with contracts that could be suspended in the future as a result of restrictions on travel to and from some countries that are the global hotspots of the coronavirus pandemic.
It is noteworthy that the ministry launched the Musaned portal in 2015 to facilitate the hiring of foreign domestic workers. The portal grants immediate approval once requirements are fulfilled and it greatly reduces the tedious waiting period employers had to face earlier. The platform enables employers to gain electronic visas for helpers very easily and quickly.
Musaned focuses on making procedures for the recruitment of domestic workers smoother as well as on protecting the rights of all parties involved to a great extent.