Reader asks if they need a work permit to be employed in the country.
Question: I came to the UAE on a visit visa. A friend has offered me a job to manage his business in Dubai. Can I join immediately on the visit visa or do I need to first get an employment one?
Answer: Pursuant to your queries, it is assumed that you are offered employment by your friend who owns business in the mainland Dubai. Therefore, the provisions of 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 and Federal Decree Law No. 29 of 2021 Regarding Entry and Residence of Foreigners are applicable.
In the UAE, an employee may not be employed by an employer without a valid work permit. 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.”
Furthermore, any employer in the UAE who employs an employee without a valid work permit may have to pay penalties and face deportation from UAE.
This is in accordance with Article 60 (1) of the Employment Law and Article 25 (1) & (7) of the Immigration Law. The provisions of the aforesaid laws read as below:
Article 60(1) of the Employment Law:
“Shall be sentenced to a fine of no less than Dh50,000 and not more than Dh200,000, whoever:
Employs an employee who has not obtained a permit to work for him.”
Article 25 (1) & (7) of the Immigration Law states:
“There shall be punishment with a fine of Dh50,000 to anyone who employs, harbours or puts the alien in violation of the provisions of this Decree-Law, and the penalty shall be imprisonment and a fine of Dh50,000 in case of recidivism.
“In all cases, the court shall order the deportation of the violating alien, as well as it shall also order the deportation of the alien who has employed him or harboured him upon recidivism.”
An employer and an employee may mutually agree to obtain a work permit, based on the various type of work permit which are available as stipulated by the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation (MoHRE). The types of work permits may include part-time work permit, temporary work permit, and freelance work permit as mentioned in Article 6 of the Cabinet Resolution No. 1 of 2022.
Based on the aforementioned provisions of law, you should not work in your friend’s business while you are on a visit visa. Instead, you may request your friend to provide a work permit and UAE residency visa sponsored by his entity so that it will enable you to manage the operations of his business in the UAE.
News Source: Khaleej Times