In light of the complicated situation with the movement of people and the Covid-19 pandemic, the UAE government has made the decision to waive residency and visit visa fines for all expats whose documents expired in early March.
These individuals will now be entitled to a three-month grace period to exit the UAE starting from May 18 without the burden of facing any fines. The directive was issued by Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, President of the UAE, and Brigadier Khamis Al Kaabi, official spokesman for the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (FAIC) took to Twitter on Wednesday night to make the announcement official.
He confirmed that “the presidential order includes full waiver of fines for people with expired entry or residency permits willing to leave the country after May 18 – this grace period will last for another three months.” Before adding that that the decision includes exemption from all fines related to ID cards and expired work permits too: “The order includes waiver of fines on expired Emirates ID and work permits.”
Brigadier General Al Kaabi: As per the directives of UAE President,His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan,holders of both residency and visit visas that expired in early March are exempted from fines.They have a three-month grace period to depart UAE starting May 18th.
— UAEGov (@uaegov) May 13, 2020
Back on March 26, the UAE officials announced that work permits and residence visas will be issued and renewed automatically for labourers employed by companies and support service staff such as domestic workers. The government added that anyone taking advantage of this scheme would be allowed to re-enter the UAE at a later date if they decide to return to the country in the future.
In a bid to streamline identity and citizen services Brig Al Kaabi added: “We urge the public to use the smart platform of the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship to get the services they need.”
Government officials have also confirmed that residency visas of expatriates, whether they are inside or outside of the country, will remain valid until the end of the year.