UAE: Firms cannot ask new employees to start working until they get residence visa

MoHRE clarifies some rules that employers must abide by when hiring from outside the country

by

Ismail Sebugwaawo

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Published: Thu 16 Feb 2023, 8:40 AM

Last updated: Thu 16 Feb 2023, 4:27 PM

Private firms cannot make new employees start their jobs unless their residence visas have been obtained from the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) has clarified.

The ministry explained on its website that firms should not make their new employees start work based on obtaining the initial work permits, because this permit is only provided temporarily to the new employee in order to complete the residency procedures.


The MoHRE was responding to frequently asked questions when it clarified these rules.

Officials said that when a person is granted a permit to work within the country, it is required that they possess professional competence or educational qualifications that the country needs.


An employer wanting to bring in a foreign worker from outside the country under a work permit must apply to the ministry with a request to obtain the “quota” and then print the work offer that he will present to the worker. The job offer contains a comprehensive description of the rights and duties of each of the two parties. The document is then signed electronically and sent to the worker in his home country online, or to the concerned employment agency, in order for the worker to view it and express his approval thereof, whether by a signature or fingerprint.

The ministry pointed out that the job offer is available in both Arabic and English. It is also available in a third language that the worker understands, and an appendix containing all the details of the provisions of the Labour Relations Regulation Law is attached to it.

5 conditions to get work permits approved

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation confirmed that there are five main conditions that employers must adhere to in order to approve applications for work permits for their facilities.

These include:

1. Submitting a work offer signed by both parties indicating the work relationship between the owner of the facility and the worker

2. Checking that the employee does not have any existing work permit or card with another company

3. Ensuring that the employee is aged 18 and above

4. Giving the employee work that is commensurate with the activity of the establishment

5. Providing a bank guarantee of Dh3,000 for each employee, which is deposited in the MoHRE’s bank account through one of the approved banks in the country

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