Legal View

Is it illegal to work in UAE during visa transition period?

Ashish Mehta/Dubai
Filed on January 15, 2019 | Last updated on January 15, 2019 at 07.48 am

If your residence visa is cancelled because your spouse is switching jobs, it's best to inform your employer in writing.

Question:  I am employed in the UAE and my visa is under the sponsorship of my husband. My husband is changing his job. He cancelled my residence visa prior to cancellation of his visa by his previous employer, which will enable his prospective employer to apply for a new residence visa. Can I work during this transition period in my company?


We assume that your husband is changing his employment within the UAE. An individual in the UAE can only take up employment if he or she has a valid employment visa. In this instance, you should hold an employment permit (labour card) issued by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization in the UAE. 

Since your residence visa is cancelled, you should inform about the same in writing to your employer. Under the UAE federal residential laws, you should not work during the transition period as your visa is cancelled. Once your new residence visa is issued, you may resume work with the same employer. Further, if there is a delay in the issue of residence visa to your husband, you may obtain an employment visa from your employer. 

Know the law

You are not legally allowed to work during the transition period as your residence visa is cancelled. Once your new visa is issued, you may resume work with the same employer

Ashish Mehta is the founder and Managing Partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates. He is qualified to practise law in Dubai, the United King. 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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