The UAE is an increasingly popular destination for clients looking to establish residency or a trading company. The UAE is an ideal place for HNWI’s and entrepreneurs to obtain residency, being strategically located at the crossroads of the world with a strong economy, and is openly welcoming people looking to work and invest. It has everything an investor could ask for, including some of the best healthcare and education systems in the world. Dubai, in particular, is a haven for investment and a major offshore financial centre for international trade.

UAE Residence VISA Requirements

Before you can apply for a UAE residence visa (also referred to as a UAE investor visa) you first need to establish a company, be that mainland or free zone. Once we have established the company for you, we will provide a complete visa processing solution that will supply all the prerequisites you need before you can live and work in the UAE.

The benefits of UAE Residence Visas

There are many advantages to obtaining a residence visa in the UAE. These include:

  • Access to covid vaccinations.

  • Ability to operate more freely within one of the world’s best business infrastructures.

  • Plenty of tax advantages (exemptions etc.).

  • Permission to buy property, get a driving licence, or open a bank account in the country.

  • Access to public services, such as hospitals, schools and universities.

  • Residency in a country with a robust economy and a stable political climate.

  • Ability to set up and run a company in a key growth region.

The different types of UAE residence visa

Here’s a run-through of the main types of residence visa available in the UAE:

Employment Visa

The employment visa (sometimes referred to as labour visa) gives you the legal right to work in the UAE. To obtain this visa, you’ll need to go through an extensive approval process, which is why it’s useful to have professional assistance.

It’s the most commonly issued visa and is valid for two years (three years in a Free Zone). After this time, it will need to be renewed. In order to apply for a labour visa, you’ll be asked to supply a variety of supporting documents, such as a copy of your passport, your immigration establishment card, educational certificates (where appropriate) and your trade licence, among other things.

Partner visa

Sometimes called the investor residence visa, this is issued to free zone and mainland businesses. It permits you to reside in the UAE for three years, and like the labour visa, requires several documents as part of the application process. These include the LLC, LSA or partnership agreement, your trade licence, copies of your passport and immigration establishment card, and more.

Dependent’s visa

The dependent’s visa (sometimes termed the family residence visa) means that investors and workers can bring their families to live with them in the UAE. There are certain terms and conditions that must be met – for example, the sponsor must be earning at least AED 4,000 a month, or AED 3000 plus accommodation. The authorities require plenty of supporting documents in order to approve this visa. This might include copies of your marriage certificate (translated into Arabic), bank statements proving your salary, tenancy contracts,  and your children’s birth certificates.

Retirement visa

This visa was only introduced recently and allows investors over the age of 55 to reside in the UAE. However, terms and conditions do apply.

The steps involved in obtaining a UAE residency visa

The UAE residency visa process differs, depending on which type of visa you choose (we can advise). The steps below illustrate typical routes towards obtaining one.

Step 1 – Apply for an entry permit

This first stage can either be carried out while you’re in the UAE, or in another country.

Step 2

Arrive in Dubai to activate entry permit – or perform in country status change if in UAE already.

Step 3 – Medical test and ID

Once you’ve been given your entry permit, you’ll be asked to undergo a medical test, and apply for your emirates identity card.

Step 4 – Submission of documents

Next, we will collate the relevant documents and submit them to the immigration department, including your original passport.

Step 5 – Passport stamp

Once all the documents have been reviewed and approved, your passport will be stamped with your residency visa.

The process can be complicated, which is why it’s recommended that you work with an industry expert, who can take on the hard work on your behalf.

Frequently asked questions

Why is it necessary to have a UAE residency visa?

There are a few reasons why you will need to apply for a residency visa. These include:

  • Being able to legally work in the UAE
  • Open bank accounts
  • Obtain a UAE driving licence

How long does it take for the visa to be approved?

The entry permit can usually be obtained in five to seven working days. After that, the visa typically takes about a week to be approved. However, this is dependent on all the correct documents being submitted – and the process is greatly speeded up with the assistance of a specialist company.

How many visas can I obtain for business purposes?

This is dependent on the nature of your business, and also the size of your premises.

How long will my visa last?

The exact length depends on which visa you choose. Usually, it’s either two or three years.

How much does it cost?

Again, this differs, depending on exactly what you require. Get in touch with us for more details.

Charterhouse Lombard and UAE residency visas

We have over 15 years of experience in facilitating our clients’ residency goals and making the necessary arrangements to help gain residency visas for those who wish to make use of the UAE’s zero corporate and zero personal tax benefits.

If you are considering residency in the UAE we will:

  • Collect you from your accommodation
  • Take you for medical and finger printing
  • Process the Emirates Identity Card
  • Collect your medical results when ready
  • Return passports complete with the 3-year residence visa
  • Assist in the opening of UAE bank accounts for companies and clients

Once you have been approved for a visa, UAE law dictates that individuals need to reside in Dubai for one day every 180 days to maintain a tax-free residency and to keep your residency visa valid.

Contact Charterhouse Lombard

If you’re interested in obtaining a UAE residence Visa, contact Charterhouse Lombard. We can help manage the entire UAE Residence Visa process. Contact us today for expert advice or take a look at some relevant pages below: