UAE employment visas
Foreign professionals who wish to live and work in the United Arab Emirates must apply for a residency visa and a work permit (labor card). A residency visa can be obtained after fulfilling any one of the following conditions: i) UAE business registration ii) investment in a UAE resident company iii) purchasing UAE real estate or iv) employment in a UAE company.
- Foreign entrepreneurs may apply for an investor visa and a residence visa. This visa will be issued for 3 years;
- An investor visa requires sponsorship from an Emirati national resident in the UAE. To qualify for the same, the foreign national must deposit up to 20,000AED with the UAE government.
- Entrepreneurs with approved investor visas can apply for residence visas for their family members;
- A Foreign worker will apply for an electronic work permit and a residence visa. Labor cards and residence permits are issued for up to 2 years by local mainland companies, and for up to 3 years by free zone companies;
- This visa will be issued for a period of up to 3 years and is renewable for a similar period if agreed by both the employer and the employee;
- Documents presented will include i) an employer sponsorship letter ii) an employment contract iii) copies of the applicant’s professional/academic credentials and iv) a medical certificate;
- Employees with approved visas can apply for residence visa for their family members if their salary is i) at least 3,000 AED per month with accommodation paid by a sponsor or ii) more than AED4,000.
- The visit visa requires sponsorship from a citizen, resident or investor. Two types of visit visa are available (i)The short-term visit visas which are valid for 30 days and (ii) The long-term visas are valid for 90 days.
- Foreign tourists of certain countries can obtain either their visa on arrival. All other nationalities must submit a visa application prior to entering the UAE;
- Documents requested for visa approval include i) Passport copy ii) clear photograph iii) proof of residence and iv) proof of funds for high risk countries.
- The processing time for visas is normally 3-4 working days subject to immigration approval and the application.
Frequently asked questions
How long will a UAE residence visa be issued for business purposes?UAE business residence permit will be issued for 3 years.