By Dr Nizar Kochery/Doha
Question: We have appointed a subcontractor for supply of materials and installation. However, due to various reasons we lost our contract with the client. The contract was not one of back-to-back nature. As per law, would any termination be possible? Please advise.
Answer: Article 707 of the Civil Code provides for an employer’s entitlement to terminate a contract for convenience at any time, provided that he compensates the contractor for the expenses he has incurred, the works he has performed and completed and for the profit the contractor would have gained if he had completed the work. The law permits the court to assess or otherwise adjust the compensation due to the non-terminating party. If the compensation due is disputed by the contractual parties, the court will determine the compensation due.
Exemption from the judicial fees
Q: Does the law allow exemption from court fee in any circumstances? I have lent money to one of my friends. But now he is not willing to repay the money. I came to know that there is court fee and other charges for conducting a case. I lost my job so that I cannot process the case paying the fees. In such case, how can I get exemption? I heard that for labourers there is no court fee. Please advise.
A: According to Article 551 of the Civil and commercial procedure code, if a party proves to be unable to pay the judicial fees, he shall be exempted wholly or partially from payment. Exemption shall include fees of judicial papers, execution fees, expenses of judicial notices and other expenses borne by the litigants. Exemption shall be conditioned on there being good prospects of success in the claim. A request for exemption from payment of fees shall be submitted to the competent court and the court shall examine such a request.
With regard to exemption of court fees, the exemption will be granted only for employment related matters. According to Article 10 of the Labour Laws, all lawsuits filed by the workers or their heirs claiming the entitlements as per law or the service contract shall be shall be exempted from judicial fees.
Authorisation by a shareholder
Q: I own 2% shares of a company doing business in Doha. Recently I was terminated from my employment. Now I am not receiving any information about the company’s decisions and I cannot attend its meetings because I am not in Doha. The partners suggest that I grant one of them a power of attorney for attending meetings but I wish to appoint a friend who is not a partner. Please advise.
A: According to Article 252 of the Commercial Companies Law, every shareholder has the right to attend the general assembly regardless of the number of shares owned by him and by virtue of a particular authorisation, he may authorise by a special power of attorney a partner other than the manager to represent him in the general assembly. Every shareholder shall have a number of votes equivalent to the number of shares he owns or represents.
Recovering loss from an employee
Q: An employee damaged the company’s property which led to delay and loss in completion of work. What is the provision in the Labour Law to recover the loss from the employee. Is it legal not to pay the wages to recover the loss? Please advise.
A: Under Article 71, the worker is under obligation to compensate the employer for damage, loss or destruction to machinery, products or equipment of the establishment as a result of his fault provided that the obligation of the worker for the compensation shall be preceded by an enquiry. The employer may deduct the value of the compensation from the wage provided that the value of the compensation does not exceed the wage due to the worker for seven days in one month.
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