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Press Dossier    By Date   16/04/2024 UAE: Can a wife work but stay under her husband's sponsorship?

Khaleej Times, Tue, Apr 16, 2024 | Shawwal 7, 1445

UAE: Can a wife work but stay under her husband's sponsorship?

Emirates: Question: My wife resides in Dubai under my sponsorship. On her visa, it states 'housewife; not allowed to work'. She has received a job offer, but we want to keep her sponsorship the same as the benefits that my firm offers dependents, which are far better. What can we do? Can she work on the same visa? What are the rules and procedures?

Answer: Pursuant to your queries, it is assumed that your wife, who is under your sponsorship to reside in the UAE, intends to take up employment at a mainland company located in Dubai. Therefore, the provisions of the Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021 on the Regulation of Employment Relations, Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022 on the Implementation of Federal Decree Law No. 33 of 2021 regarding the Regulation of Employment Relations, Administrative Resolution No. 38 of 2022 Concerning the Guidelines for Implementing Ministerial Resolution No. 46 of 2022 regarding Work Permits, Offer Letters and Employment Contract Forms and Federal Decree Law No. 29 of 2021 Regarding Entry and Residence of Foreigners are applicable.

It's important to note that a woman sponsored by her husband to reside in the UAE is indeed eligible to work under Article 6(1)(c) of the Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022. This article states, "Subject to the provisions of Article 6 of the Decree Law, the types of work permit shall be determined as follows:

C - Work permit for residents sponsored by their families: This type of permit is issued to residents who are sponsored by their family and employed to work in an establishment registered with the Ministry.”

Furthermore, 'Administrative Resolution No. 38 of 2022’ states the requirements for an individual to work in the UAE who is sponsored by his or her family member. This includes details and documents of the applicant (employee), including but not limited to a clear photo with a white background, a copy of a valid passport which is valid for at least six months and a copy of a valid UAE residency visa, approved employment contract signed by both the employer and employee and duly endorsed by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE), notarised and UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation attested academic certificate (if required based on the designation/profession).

Moreover, an individual in the UAE must obtain a work permit from his or her prospective employer to be employed there. This is in accordance with Article 6(1) of the Employment Law and Article 5(4) of the Immigration Law. The provisions of aforesaid laws read as below:

Article 6(1) of the Employment Law: “No work may be performed in the UAE, and no employee may be recruited or employed by any employer without obtaining the work permit from the Ministry, in accordance with the provisions of this Decree-Law and its Executive Regulations."

Article 5(4) of the Immigration Law: “An alien is obligated not to engage in any activity or work except in accordance with the legislation in force in the State.”

Based on the aforementioned provisions of law, your wife may work with her prospective employer in the UAE while her UAE residency visa is sponsored by you. However, your wife needs to follow the guidelines for a work permit, offer letter, and employment contract procedures as required by the MoHRE.

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