Latest: Fake CVs and degrees: tough action will remove 'blight on industry' say recruiters
Jobseekers who use fake degrees to get work in the UAE may soon face two years in prison and a fine of up to Dh500,000 ($136,000), the Federal National Council heard.
Under a draft law passed by the FNC on Tuesday, people who use forged qualifications will face stricter penalties, even if they claim ignorance about the authenticity of their documents.
People who mistakenly or unknowingly use a fake degree will be fined up to Dh30,000 and could spend up to three months in jail.
“Everybody knows the rapid technological advancements for producing such documents,” said FNC member Nasser Al Yamahi.
“This has become a worldwide trend, and not just in the UAE.”
He said many people get fake degrees from unlicensed academic institutes abroad.
“This is something new in society, and it is not prosecuted [by existing] laws, so it became necessary to have a comprehensive legislation for it,” Mr Al Yamahi said.
The new law will also target recruiters and employers who knowingly accept fake paperwork.
They will have to pay a minimum fine of Dh100,000 – which can go up to Dh1m – and up to two years in jail.
Those who issue or contribute to issuing fake qualifications will face a fine of between Dh500,000 and Dh1m and up to two years in jail
The authenticity of qualifications is certified by the Ministry of Higher Education.
At the FNC in January 2019, Minister of State for Higher Education Dr Ahmad Al Falasi said the country’s status as a “top destination” tempted people to forge documents to land lucrative positions.
He said no fake degrees were accredited by the ministry but 143 attempts to pass off such certificates as genuine were detected in 2018.
“Before accrediting any certificate, the ministry asks for stamps from concerned parties, like the embassy of the country the degree was issued at, and then we contact the university itself and confirm whether the student graduated from there,” he said.
Jobseekers applying for roles in government and semi-government organisations in Abu Dhabi must present a degree accredited by the ministry before being recruited. But not all private companies follow that rule.
The new law seeks to end this discrepancy and put an end to the practice of using fake qualifications.
UAE jobs: our guide to 14 sectors and the salaries on offer – in pictures
FOOD AND DRINK: The hospitality sector hit hard times. With restrictions eased, people are eating out again. The average salary for a bartender, waiter or supervisor is Dh4,000 to Dh5,000, rising to Dh7,500 to Dh8,500 for managers. High-end places can command significantly more. Chefs and head chefs can expect to take home between Dh6,000 to Dh38,000. Hotels often provide staff accommodation. Hollie Adams / Getty Images
TEACHER/LECTURER: Teachers kept our children learning despite huge disruption to education. The average salary in UAE is Dh9,000 with lows of Dh4,000 and highs of Dh21,000. Headteachers earn an average of Dh46,000 with highs of Dh75,000. University staff are typically well paid, with assistant professors and full lecturers earning between Dh20,000 and Dh40,000. AFP
NURSES: The true heroes of the pandemic, these professionals worked around the clock to treat patients and save lives. Salaries range between Dh4,000 to Dh14,500 and can be higher for senior nurses in higher-end private hospitals. AFP
HEALTH AND SAFETY: Health and safety has become a key priority. Junior roles in this sector can take home, on average, about Dh5,500 a month. That rises to Dh22,500 for managerial positions. Victor Besa / The National
FLIGHT CREW: Airlines have been left counting the cost of cancellations. Of the few staff being hired in this sector, salaries for cabin crew and aircraft technicians range from Dh11,500 to Dh23,000. Pilots can usually secure between Dh20,000 to Dh60,000, depending on experience. EPA
HOSPITAL ADMINISTRATOR: Non-medical staff are currently in demand as the role of managing patients, their documents, payment and test results is increasingly crucial. Salaries vary but can be in the same region as nurses. Reem Mohammed / The National
CYBERSECURITY: The threat posed by cybercrime has never been more real, with the sale of financial assets, documents and medical records a lucrative business. Systems analysts and software engineers can earn Dh25,000 or more, rising significantly for those with high-end cybersecurity experience. Unsplash
HR, MARKETING AND FINANCE: Senior roles in these managerial classes vary significantly, but are generally well paid and often come with performance-related bonuses. Gulf Talent lists HR manager and HR business partner salaries at up to Dh42,500. An HR director of a major firm can earn twice that. Getty Images
CONSTRUCTION: Engineering jobs have been hit hard by a downturn in the sector, but it remains a skilled and respected profession. Junior salaries for site inspectors and engineers begin at a few thousand dirhams, rising to Dh45,000 or more for construction managers. Gulf Talent says salaries in Saudi are higher than the UAE in some roles. Sammy Dallal / The National
ACCOUNTING AND AUDITING: A flooded market with basic accountants often earning Dh5,000 to Dh10,000. Senior auditors can earn Dh30,000 or more. Accountants who move into finance and management can expect significantly higher salaries. Getty Images
SALES AND MERCHANDISING: As the economy slowly picks up, the retail sector will be looking to fill key roles again soon. Gulf Talent lists sales staff salaries from Dh1,500 to Dh3,500. A sales merchandiser can take home twice that each month. Paulo Vecina / The National
HOTELS: Vacancies in the hospitality sector have been popping up. A duty manager at a hotel can earn anywhere from Dh6,000 to Dh26,000 per month. Front of house staff, including concierge, can take take home between Dh1,500 to Dh9,000. Staff accommodation is typically provided. Sarah Dea / The National
LEGAL: Lawyers and legal advisors can earn between Dh7,500 to Dh37,500. That rises to more than Dh53,000 for legal counsel positions, though the average sits at about Dh20,500. Jeff Topping / The National
OFFICE ADMINISTRATION: Often a casualty of the pandemic. When business returns to normal, jobseekers for secretarial and receptionist roles can expect salaries ranging from Dh2,500 to Dh8,000. Personal assistants and office managers fare better, from Dh4,500 up to Dh22,500 for higher-end firms. Getty Images