COVID-19: Suspension of UAE residence visa endorsement on passports

25 Mar 20

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

IMPACT – HIGH

Dubai immigration authorities have temporarily suspended endorsement of UAE residence visas on passports for in-country visa applications. Applications for in-country visa procedures will continue to be accepted and processed until the visa approval stage. These arrangements will apply until further notice.

Visas/permits/applications affected:

  • In-country Work and Residence Permit new applications.
  • In-country Dependent Residence Permit new applications.
  • In-country Work and Residence Permit renewal applications.
  • In-country Dependent Residence Permit renewal applications.

Background: To curb the proliferation of COVID-19, the UAE has put into place a series of restrictive measures, including suspending the issuance of work permits, tourist visas and visas on arrival are suspended until further notice.

The General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs – Dubai has announced that in-country visa applications will continue to be processed; however, once the visa is approved, it will not be stamped in the passport until further notice.

Authorities have further announced that if the employee intends to leave the UAE or a physical visa is urgently needed for other purposes, an exception can be made by approaching immigration at Dubai International Airport (DXB).

Analysis & Comments: Companies should expect delays with the employees’ visa endorsements after the suspension is lifted. As yet, there is no announcement by the authorities as to whether new Emirates IDs will also no longer be issued. Deloitte are closely monitoring the situation and will keep you updated on any changes.

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