The resident visa in the United Arab Emirates (Dubai or other Emirates of the UAE) is the permit which gives the right to stay in the UAE for a longer period of time. Regularly such visa, depending on its type, is issued for 2 or 3 years. There are various types of Dubai resident permits which are regulated the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs of Dubai
In the present article, we provide the overview of all the main options whereby our central emphasis in this article is on investor’s visas and the related visas for families and how to receive and renew such.
Resident Visa as a UAE property owner/investor
One of the popular options is getting the visa in the United Arab Emirates is via purchasing of a residential property. The most common Emirate where a large number of foreign investors prefers to buy properties is the Emirate of Dubai. The property ownership in Dubai is perfectly regulated and safe for investment as well as financially attractive in terms of property long-term price appreciation in combination with the solid rental income. Buying a property in Dubai is very straight - forward process which takes 2 to 3 weeks in total and, once the property is purchased, its owner has the possibility to get the status of the UAE resident via applying for property visa. Once such resident permit is received – it needs to be renewed every two years. The property owner can also get the visas for his family – his wife and under-aged children.
Another very practical option – UAE resident permit over company registration
This option is one of the most preferred ones by investors. It requires registration of a company in one of the Free Trade Zones of Dubai or other Emirates of the UAE. Company and visa can be arranged quite fast – all together it can be completed in about forty-five days period. Such permits are issued for 3 years and, upon expiry, need to be renewed. To be able to keep you investor residency permit valid company owner needs to do the company’s yearly renewal. Regarding family visa – same rule applies as for property visa – once the main permit is issued – family ones can be applied.
Other types of residential visas – employment, student visa, etc.
Other types of resident visas which are available in Dubai, the UAE are employment permit and student visas. The employment residency permit process is handled by employers and takes on average 2 to 4 weeks. Resident visas of this type are issued for 2 or 3 years depending on the company location – mainland or free zone - and need to be renewed accordingly. Same applies to student resident permit with one difference - instead of a company, the Institute provides special confirmation on the enrollment which gives the right to receive and subsequently to renew the resident permit.
Family resident visas can be received under employment visas provided the salary meets the necessary minimum requirements.
UAE visa permit - Sponsorship – what it means
When we talk about resident visas in Dubai, UAE for you and your family you can often hear the term “Sponsor” or Sponsorship”. If you believe that this means that someone would sponsor you some money – this is not a case. In the UAE, when talking about permits, it has a different meaning. Sponsor is an individual, privately owned legal entity or governmental institution which is in charge and controls your visa issuance. For example, when you register your company and receive or renew your permit as investor – your sponsor is the Free Trade Zone where your company is registered. If you already have your resident permit and arrange a visa for your wife – you act as the sponsor for your wife’s visa at the time of its issue and further renewals. And for employees, their sponsor is the company they sign the employment contract with.
Business persons – resident visa in Dubai – most common choice
When talking about entrepreneurs the most common solution, they opt for in the UAE are resident permits as company owners. This is fast, cost- effective solution and it gives a number of other advantages. The company can have no activities, and this would not harm the visa receiving and renewal, but then, as an option, a company can also be used for real business whereby enjoying the tax-free environment of the UAE.
Family members – what you shall know on visas and its renewals in the UAE
Once you have your resident investor visa in Dubai, you can start the process of applying for visas for your wife and under-aged children. The process is quite similar to the application for your visa whereby there are some additional requirements such as the proof of available residential accommodation in the UAE and legalizing of the marriage certificate and birth certificate for children. The family visa validity is linked with the validity of the main visa. To renew family visa main one must be renewed first.
Top 10 tips on what you need to know on Visas in the UAE
- You have the option to get your Dubai visa over property purchase or company registration.
- Fastest and most cost-efficient investor permit is over company registration.
- To qualify for property residency permit, the property value shall be at least one million dirhams.
- The validity of investor resident visa is from 2 to 3 years – depending on visa type.
- Visa, received in one Emirate does not limit to live in other Emirate of the UAE.
- Average time required for the entire process to get investor resident visa is 30 to 45 days.
- Once you receive your visa, you can apply for visas for your wife and under-aged children.
- Permit, even if it is expired, needs to be cancelled as according to applicable procedure.
- UAE visa gives you the option to obtain tax resident certificate in the UAE.
- This is one of the most regulations-friendly countries in terms of visas for foreigners.
Emirates ID, medical check – first-time application and renewal
One of the steps within Dubai resident permit application is going over the procedure of medical check and application for Emirates ID. The medical check is the basic check of blood as well as X-Ray for the absence of dangerous transmissible diseases. Upon completion of this check, the application for the Emirates ID needs to be done. This is the identity card of the size of a credit card which every person receives along with the resident visa. The Emirates IDs are also to be received by family members when they receive their visas and are renewed every time the visas are due for renewal.
Medical Insurance – obligation to get the resident visa for investor and his family
The medical insurance has become the obligatory condition for UAE resident visa application and renewal. It applies to investor and all his family members. There is a large number of insurance companies in the UAE which offer the medical insurance with the terms and conditions which fulfil the obligatory minimal requirements of such medical insurance coverage.
Documents legalization – requirements for visas
When applying for a resident permit in Dubai, the UAE there may be some certain requirements for documents to be legalized. For investors who choose the option of residency over the company, in the event they also act as company’s directors - depending on the company activity – their diploma with legalization may be requested. For family visas application and renewal, the legalization of the marriage certificate and birth certificate of kids would be requested. For employees – for professional positions – the diploma or other education certificates may be requested in the legalized form.
Visa transfer or status change
There may be scenarios when investor or employee needs to transfer his resident visa to another status – for example, transfer investor residency permit from one company to another one or change the visa status from investor to manager. Same applies for family members – your wife, for example, can have the family visa received under your investor visa and then you can change visa status, for example, by putting her as the company shareholder means her visa would become investor visa or vice versa.
Visa cancellation in the UAE – procedure and regulations
All types of residency permits in Dubai once received, need to be renewed when close to expiry or, if not required anymore, need to be cancelled. It happens quite often that those persons who receive UAE visas as the residents believe that purely letting the residency permits to expire is sufficient. However, this is not a case. All resident visas must be cancelled as according to the applicable regulations. Such cancellation also includes cancellation of the Emirates ID card. Failure to cancel investor resident status may result in difficulties when deciding to come to the UAE in the form of penalties being accumulated over time or other negative consequences. Thus, all visas need to be duly cancelled.
To summarize the above – UAE is the great country for business and living and provides a large number of options on how to get and subsequently renew Dubai resident visa here for you and members of your family.
If you need further details, please feel free to contact us, and we would provide full support on the residency permits application process.