A new sponsorship rule that allows expats to sponsor their families have come in to effect in the UAE. The new rule, that makes income, not profession the sole criteria for men and women to sponsor family members was announced by the Federal Authority for Identity and Emiratisation.
This means any UAE resident, male or female, can sponsor family members (spouse, under-18 sons and unmarried daughters), provided he/she earns a monthly salary of Dh4,000 or at least Dh3,000 plus accommodation provided by the company, according to the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (FAIC).
The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (FAIC) has confirmed that women are not restricted under the new rules. There had been some confusion after some women were told by authorities in Dubai that only certain professionals were eligible to sponsor their families if they earned Dh4,000 or above.
The decision aims at enhancing family stability of foreign workers and social cohesion, as well as attracting highly skilled workers while maintaining a healthy balance between professional and personal life"
"The decision aims at enhancing family stability of foreign workers and social cohesion, as well as attracting highly skilled workers while maintaining a healthy balance between professional and personal life," informed a statement by the General Secretariat of the UAE cabinet.
Potential beneficiaries must provide proof of appropriate housing and health insurance for their families, as well as their registration in the national population database. They must also apply for IDs for every family member.
The sponsor must also present a certified marriage certificate and their children's birth certificates translated into Arabic, as well as proof of their monthly income.
While first announcing the Cabinet decision, Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli, minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, stated that the decision "will improve the family lives and social ties of private sector workers".
He also stressed that the move will "increase productivity" in the labour market, "support the national economy, and improve the performance of workers within a comprehensive environment that will integrate the entire community".
Previously, a man had to earn a monthly salary of atleast Dh4,000 or Dh3,000 plus accommodation to sponsor his family while a woman had to make a minimum of Dh10,000 per month to bring her family to the country.
Also, only expats working in certain professions were allowed to sponsor their family members.