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Ask Louise

We moved to Dubai 8 months ago and my wife is hating it. She is not working for the first time in her life and is trapped at home with our 14 month old baby. My job demands long hours. We have been advised to get a maid and this is what my wife really wants but we are here to save and we have a mountain of commitments back in the UK that take priority.

So, we have someone come to help my wife twice a week with cleaning etc. She is from Sri Lanka, a lovely woman who we trust and my baby is comfortable with her. She also baby sits occasionally.

She currently has an unusual set-up. She is sponsored by an Emirati guy, but lives with a family for the past 4 years. She works only a few hours a week for this family and then works for another 8 families spread across the week for additional earnings. Her current family are happy for her to do this. Now this family are moving home for good. Therefore she needs another family to live with and loves our family more than the others. I would love to take her on as a full-time maid but cannot afford the visa, flights, medicals etc…and she would be worse-off because she would lose her additional work. She has proposed that she will re-imburse me all costs if I become her sponsor and only wants a small sum per month for part-time home help in my house (which is all I need), and then continue to work for other families.

I am worried that this breaks the law.

Yes, I am sorry but it does break the law. This is not an unusual set up as I know many maids do this however any housemaid who works for you must be sponsored by you or else you should be using an agency. This is a problem that has been around for a very long time in Dubai and has been hitting the media recently as you will see from this article.


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