According to articles 53 and 54 of the Saudi Labor Law, the Probation Period is a critical part of employment. Before offering new hires a permanent position, employers use this time to evaluate their performance.
What is a Probation Period?
In Saudi Arabia, the probation period is an important time for both employers and workers. During the trial term, the employer assesses the worker’s performance and suitability for the position. The probationary term typically lasts three to six months, although under rare circumstances, it may be prolonged for up to a year.
The probation period does, however, have significant disadvantages. While permanent employment is not yet secured, it may be a stressful and unpredictable period for workers. Finding the ideal balance between providing the employee enough time to prove themselves and ending their contract if they are not a suitable match may be difficult for companies.
Duration of Probation Period
The probation period under Saudi Labor Law cannot exceed 180 days. However, the duration of the probation period can vary depending on the nature of the job and the agreement between the employer and employee. If the employer does not specify the duration of the probation period in the contract, it is assumed to be 90 days.
Article 53 & 54 of Saudi Labor Law states
- If the employee was under a probationary period, then such probation period shall be clearly referenced and specified in the work contract. The probation period shall not exceed more than ninety days, such period may be extended, subject to a written agreement between the parties, to a total of a hundred and eighty days. EID AL-FITR AND AL-ADHA holidays as well as sick leaves shall not be included in the calculation of the duration period. Either party may terminate the work contract during the probation period, unless the contract includes a provision giving such right exclusively to either party. The employee may not be put under a probation period more than once for the same employer. However, subject to a written agreement between the parties, the employee may be put under another probation period if it’s in regard to a different job or work or if a period no less than six months has passed since the termination of the previous labor relationship between the employer and the employee.
- If the work contract is terminated during the probation period, neither party will be entitled to a compensation nor will the employee be entitled to an end of service award.
Termination of Probation Period
During the probation period, the employer has the right to fire the employee without cause and without pay. Nonetheless, the dismissal must not be for discriminatory reasons, and the reason for the dismissal must be true. The employee is judged to have completed the probationary term and will get permanent job status, however, if the business chooses to keep them beyond the trial time.
Employee’s Rights during Probation Period
The employee is entitled to all benefits and protections outlined by Saudi labour law throughout the probationary period. This covers the minimum pay, yearly leave, sick leave, and benefits at the conclusion of employment. Moreover, the employer must provide the worker the safe workspace and instruction they need to accomplish their job obligations.