It is well known that to live in the UAE you must obtain certain documentation. Among the most important requirements, we find the UAE Residency Visa and the Emirates ID. Recently, the UAE has announced that there will be some changes regarding the stamps and stickers of these documents on the expatriates’ passports.
In this article, you are going to learn more about this new regulation and what it means for foreigners that want to live in the UAE. Moreover you will gain more understanding about when this will be applicable. Let us observe the following:
- What is the Emirates ID?
- What is the UAE Residency visa?
- Changes made regarding the UAE visa stamps on passports
- When will the replacement of the residency visa be applicable?
- Why the Emirates ID will replace the UAE residency visa on passports?
- How can Connect Resources help you with immigration to the UAE?
1. What is the Emirates ID?
The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship is in charge of issuing the Emirates ID. Expatriates undergo the immigration procedure to obtain their residency in the UAE. In addition, UAE citizens and residents must also have their valid Emirates ID and carry it with them.
It is the official document for identification, thus, every person that wants to reside in the UAE must obtain it.
Some of the uses of this card are the following:
- Obtain government services
- Voting in elections
- Travel document for use within the GCC
- Immigration document in airports in the UAE
Since it is a highly important document, it has incredible features to make it more secure and useful for several purposes. It is a smart card since it has a component of public key infrastructure, and also a biometric fingerprint.
The cardholder has its identity number which is unique for each holder forever. Thus, it has a sole and un-repeated number. In addition, it has personal data contained that can be read by machines that are designed for this purpose.
Therefore, it has state-of-the-art technology. Hence, it should not be surprising that the UAE Authority intends to use it for immigration purposes too. Thanks to its amazing technology, it can be very helpful to check and review the personal information and immigration status of the cardholder.
1.1 How can people obtain the Emirates ID?
Obtaining the Emirates ID is a straightforward process. You just need to go to one of the typing centers and fill out the eForm. Or, you can also visit the official website and submit it from there.
After that, you must proceed to the registration center indicated and complete the process. The best part is that if you want to obtain this card in less than 24 hours you can opt for the Fawri service and pay the urgent service fee. Nevertheless, this option is only available for UAE nationals and GCC nationals.
2. What is the UAE Residency visa?
Expats that want to travel to the UAE need to undergo a process to obtain their residency. This is because if you want to stay in the country, whether for creating a company or for working as an employee, you must comply with the legal requirements.
When a foreigner enters the country, they start the process to receive the documentation. Whether you enter with a visit visa or an entry permit, you must obtain your residency if you plan to stay.
According to the UAE Government website, the applicants must prove they are medically fit, apply for an Emirates ID and pass the security check. These are some of the conditions to obtain a residency.
Once they finish the procedure, they receive a stamp or sticker on their passport, which is the Residency Visa. Depending on the type of visa, the foreigner can receive a residency stamp valid for two, three, five, or even 10 years. He or she must renew said residency near the expiration date.
2.1 What will happen with current residency stamps?
Since the UAE Residency stickers will not be necessary anymore, it is normal to wonder if they will continue to be available.
According to the UAE Authority, to ease the transition between the use of residency stamps and the Emirates ID, they have decided to keep these stamps available only on the authority’s application.
It is important to point out that this does not change the fact that every expatriate that wants to work in the UAE, make an investment, purchase a property, study at the university, or do any other activity should obtain a residency document.
The only thing that this new regulation change is the fact of obtaining a residency stamp on the passport. The expatriates will have to continue carrying out their immigration procedure but with just one step less, which is the residency stamp on the passport.
3. Changes regarding the UAE visa stamps on passports
The Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Port Security announced on Tuesday the decision of replacing the UAE Residency Visa with the Emirates ID on passports.
According to this official entity, it was a UAE Cabinet decision. It was issued in a circular to departments and airlines so that they can be aware of this new regulation.
This change means that now expatriates will prove their residency status with their passport number and their Emirates ID. It is no longer required to have the stamp of the UAE Residency Visa.
Nevertheless, it is important to know from which date will this be applicable. This is because many foreigners currently carrying out the immigration process need to know if they will have to wait.
3.1 What could be the advantages of this change?
Expatriates and UAE nationals can both enjoy the changes of this new regulation. Expatriates can carry out their document renewal processes easily since they will not have to do an additional step.
This is because to renew the immigration documents you just have to renew the Emirates ID. Moreover, since this new card has more advanced technology, you just have to carry out the renewal of the Emirates ID every 10 years.
Another great news is that residents can travel outside the country whenever they want and verify their residence status at the airport with their passport number and Emirates ID. Airlines have the passport reader and this process will be easier.
4. When will the replacement of the residency visa be applicable?
According to the UAE Authority, this replacement will be applicable from April 11, 2022. Nevertheless, since this is recent news, it is necessary to wait until there is more information regarding how this replacement will be effective.
4.1 What do we know so far about no UAE visa stamps on passports?
According to the announcement of the UAE Government, the Emirates ID can now serve as the UAE residency document. Moreover, the people who are in the process to request residency will not receive the stamp on their passports from next week.
One of the advantages of this new regulation is that it reduces significantly the steps in the renovation process of the residency. This means that the Residence Visa and Emirates ID can be renewed at the same time with the same application. Before, people had to do two separate processes to renew them, as well as to request them for the first time.
According to the circular issued, the Emirates ID contains all the necessary information related to the cardholder’s residency. Therefore, when they enter the airport, the airline can check all the details that were on the residency visa sticker.
5. Why the Emirates ID will replace the UAE residency visa on passports?
Many UAE non-residents are wondering what the reason behind this new regulation is. To live in the UAE, you must have a valid visa since it is a requirement by the local authorities.
In this regard, people choose the visa scheme that suits their current situation. For example, business owners choose the investor visa, wealthy investors choose the golden visa, job seekers opt for the employment visa, and so on.
All of them need to carry out the immigration procedure that allows them to receive residency. First, they need to obtain the entry permit and travel to the UAE to continue with the process.
Once they enter the country, they must carry out different tasks, such as undergoing medical examinations and more. One of the final steps of the process is obtaining the residency visa stamp on the passport. Also, they apply for the Emirates ID.
However, with this new regulation, foreigners will not need to have a residency stamp on their passport since the Emirates ID will be enough for verifying their immigration status.
The reason behind this new law is due to the new generation of Emirates ID cards that were launched last August. The UAE Government wants to take advantage of this new document to introduce a simpler way to check the immigration status of foreigners.
5.1 What is the new Emirates ID?
This new Emirates ID comes with more features that make it an outstanding tool for regulating immigration and documentation of foreigners. Some of the incredible characteristics are the following:
- Non-visible data
- The service life increased to more than 10 years
- 3D picture of the cardholder through laser-printing where it shows the date of birth
As you can see, this new Emirates ID was developed with technology to revamp former identification cards. Since the UAE is a place known for encouraging technological innovations, it is expected to see these types of new documents.
It is an ongoing project that the UAE Authority is planning to roll out during these coming months. When it comes to immigration procedures and legislation, it is advisable to follow the news to understand more about these changes.
Therefore, if you do not have time to review constant modifications to current legislation, you can always look for an ally in this matter. Here at Connect Resources, we want to help you with your immigration needs, and for this reason, we offer our Employment Visa Outsourcing services. By partnering with us you can be sure that your employees will have the required documentation to live legally in the UAE.
6. How can Connect Resources help you with immigration to the UAE?
At Connect Resources, we offer you the best immigration services. You can confidently plan your expansion to the UAE since we will take care of obtaining the necessary visa for your employees.
As you may see, the UAE law regarding immigration procedures changes constantly. Therefore, you need to have a team of experts by your side supporting you. Our specialists are always up-to-date with the latest changes in regulations such as the replacement of the residency visa with the Emirates ID.
Would you like to obtain more information about how to obtain an Emirates ID? Please contact us at +971 433 16688, or submit your inquiries to our email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will gladly clarify all of your doubts regarding our services in the UAE.
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