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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 111467
Experience:  20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
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I work overseas in Iraq. I have to go on emergency leave

Customer Question

I work overseas in Iraq. I have to go on emergency leave for a dying family member. However I just found out today, ( I leave tomorrow morning). That my visa expires on 01 Dec. I am scheduled to return on 04 Dec. Obviously I won't be able to get back into the country. My problem is, the company isn't going to pay me while i'm on emergency leave. Or while I'm stuck at home waiting on them to get me a new visa. My contract doesn't specify that I have to be in country to be paid. It states and I quote," You will receive a semi-monthly salary of $x,xxx.xx. That's it. I have a family to take care of. I've done the sit at home for 6 months waiting on a visa unpaid. I cannot afford to go through that again. What are my options.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Oh and it was strongly suggested that I return before the 4th. Which would only put me on the ground foe 3 days. The amount of driving I have to do, with trying to see my family member. Not to mention should they pass away while I'm home. This whole things has put me in a really bad spot.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
I am afraid the employer does not need to pay an employee when they are not doing work for the company. So if your visa expires and you cannot get back into the country and are not doing work for the company while waiting at home, then legally they do not have to pay you pursuant to their contract. You have to be doing work of the employer for them to pay you under the contract.
Thus, if you do not work and you are home and your visa expires, you must get a new visa to return to go back to begin working again I am afraid.
If your contract provides for vacation or sick leave time, that would be the only way you could get compensation here until you get back to work in country or if they have work for you out of the country before you get your visa renewed.