UAE visa for widows: Does one-year residency extension need a sponsor?

Is the visa renewable, a KT reader asks


Ashish Mehta

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Published: Sun 14 Aug 2022, 10:39 AM

Question: A friend of mine passed away recently. I am helping his family out. Could you please explain to me what happens to the visa of his wife and children who were under his sponsorship? What are their options to continue staying in the UAE? I am aware of something called a 'widow visa'. Is that renewable at the end of its term?

Response: Pursuant to your queries, if an expatriate man (husband) dies in the UAE, his wife and children may extend their stay in the country for a period of one year. The extension period commences from the date of his death. The validity date of the children’s UAE residency visas may not exceed that of the mother’s.

Therefore, based on the above, your friend’s wife and children may extend their stay in the UAE, provided they can manage their livelihood.

According to the official UAE Government website, this type of visa is renewable for one time only and does not require a substitute sponsor.

How to apply

The widow will need to submit an application for residency extension along with the following:

• Proof of death

• Proof of availability of a house

• Proof of the woman’s ability to earn a living

• Medical fitness certificates for the woman and her child/children over the age 18

• Emirates ID card

• Health insurance cards, as applicable in some emirates.

(Source: UAE Government website)

For further clarifications, you may contact the General Directorate of Residency & Foreigners Affairs- Dubai (the ‘GDRFA’) or the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Port Security.

Ashish Mehta is the founder and Managing Partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates. He is qualified to practise law in Dubai, the United Kingdom and India. Full details of his firm on: Readers may e-mail their questions to: or send them to Legal View, Khaleej Times, PO Box 11243, Dubai.


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