The UAE’s Golden Visa Rules
A complete overview of eligibility criteria under the UAE’s new Golden Visa rules, the different types of long-term visas and job exploration visas available, along with expert insights.
The explanation of The UAE Golden Visa eligibility criteria
The UAE’s Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Ports Security (ICA) earlier said the new set of executive regulations regarding entry permits and long-term residence for expats will officially be enforced in September 2022.
The new rules expand the accessibility for the 10-year Golden Visa and the five-year Green Residence Visa, while adding entry permits and visas for visitors, relatives, tourists, and jobseekers looking to fly into the UAE.
This also includes an integrated system and a new generation of long-term residence visas with added benefits aimed at attracting investors, entrepreneurs, highly skilled workers, and self-employed residents.
Under the new rules, the long-term visas extend greater benefits for family members residing in the country, and offer flexible grace periods of up to 6 months after the expiry or cancellation of residency.
The green residency includes three types of categories or residencies:
- The green residency for the skilled worker,
- The green residency for self-employment, and
- A green residency for investors or partners, without the need of a sponsor or an employer.
The Green Residency replaces the previous residency, which was valid only for two years. It also has simpler eligibility criteria and greater benefits.
While Golden Visa holders can sponsor their children, irrespective of age, the Green Residence visa will allow residents to sponsor their children until the age of 25 – raising it from the previous rule which capped the age of sponsored children at 18. Unmarried girls and children of determination can remain under the special long-term residency as long as the visa is valid, irrespective of age.
Residents who have been granted a Golden Visa will no longer need to return to the UAE once in six months to keep the visa valid.
Other new advantages on the Golden Residence visa include the removal of the maximum number of support service workers, such as maids – that could be brought in under the visa. Additionally, family members will be permitted to stay in the UAE for the duration of the residency visa in the event of the death of the person who obtained the Golden Visa.
The Golden Visa residency has also been extended to include scholars, specialists, and exceptional talents, in accordance with the regulations established in this regard.
For those looking to explore job opportunities in the UAE, a specialized Job Exploration Visa will be granted, without the need of a guarantor or host inside the country, if the conditions set forth in the new executive regulations are met.
In line with these goals, real estate investors can obtain a Golden Residence visa when they purchase a property worth $544,500 (AED 2 million) or more. As per the new amendments, investors are also entitled to obtain the Golden Residence when purchasing a property with a loan from specific local banks.
Investors can also obtain Golden Residence when buying one or more off-plan properties of no less than $544,500 (AED 2 million) from approved local real estate companies.
The Golden Residence for Real Estate Investors
- Real estate investors can obtain Golden Visa when purchasing a property that is worth at least Dh2 million.
- Investors are also entitled to obtain the Golden Visa when purchasing a property with a loan from specific local banks.
- Investors can also obtain Golden Visa when buying one or more off-plan properties of no less than Dh2 million from approved local real estate companies.
The new regulation for the entry and residence of foreigners in the country also aims to support the real estate sector, develop its contribution to the gross domestic product, and double real estate investment in the country.
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