Coronavirus: UAE begins imposing fines on holders of expired residence visas

An Emirati civil employee tends to a visitor at the Passports Department in Dubai, UAE, on 16 June, 2020. (AFP)

The UAE authorities began on Sunday imposing fines on individuals with expired visas, after the end of the grace period which was meant to give time to people whose visas expired during the coronavirus related travel restrictions to renew it.

The three-month grace period announced by the government on July 10 was targeted towards UAE residents and GCC passport holders inside the country whose visas expired anytime between March 1 and July 11.

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According to the UAE’s immigration fines system, the financial penalty for staying in the country after the expiration of the grace period is as follows:

“25 dirhams per day during the first six months, 50 dirhams per day during the second six months, and 100 dirhams per day after passing a year and more.”

When the residency visa expires, the Emirates ID of the individual automatically expires as well. There is a grace period of 30 days after the expiry of the ID card. Afterwards, a fine of 20 dirhams per day is incurred, with a maximum limit of 1,000 dirhams.

Meanwhile, the grace period for “violators of entry and residency law” has been extended in August for three months from August 18 to November 17. The Federal Authority For Identity and Citizenship (ICA) said it “includes all violators with visas expired before March 1,” and that those individuals will be exempted from all fines and restrictions.

Major General Saeed Rakan Al Rashidi, Director General of Foreigners Affairs and Ports at ICA, said in August: “The violators will not be banned from entering the UAE, provided they leave the country.”

The COVID-19 global pandemic had left many people stuck abroad amid travel restrictions and unable to get back to their home country or their country of residence. And thousands of expats lost their jobs, and with that their residency visas due to the economic impact of the pandemic.

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Last Update: Monday, 12 October 2020 KSA 12:47 - GMT 09:47
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