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How to Sponsor Your Parents in UAE

Dec 15, 2023 | Living in Dubai

Understanding how to sponsor parents in UAE is crucial for expatriates wishing to reunite their families under one roof. The process, governed by specific eligibility criteria and legal requirements, enables residents to bring their parents to live with them in the Emirates. From meeting the financial thresholds to securing appropriate accommodation and navigating the application procedures, the journey involves meticulous planning and compliance with the UAE’s immigration policies.

This guide walks you through the requirements, the application process, legal considerations, and frequently asked questions to ensure a smooth sponsorship experience for your loved ones. Whether you’re considering a long-term stay or renewable residency permits, the information provided here will help pave the way for your parents’ arrival and stay in the UAE.

Requirements for Sponsoring Parents in The UAE

Eligibility Criteria for Sponsor

In the United Arab Emirates, you can sponsor your parents or your spouse’s parents to join you. But you’ll need to meet specific eligibility criteria. One of the main requirements is the financial threshold; you must have a certain minimum monthly income to qualify for sponsoring your parents or underage siblings. This threshold is notably higher than required for sponsoring a spouse or child due to the increased financial responsibility of supporting parents.

To sponsor family members, up to five family members, including parents, your monthly income must be at least $2,730. If you’re earning $4000 or more per month, you can sponsor up to six family members; special permission from the relevant authorities is necessary for those wishing to sponsor more than six family members.

Another critical criterion is having suitable accommodation. You must have appropriate housing, specifically a minimum of a two-bedroom house or flat, before applying for the family visa. This ensures that your sponsored parents will have adequate living conditions once they arrive in the UAE.

You must also provide supporting documents that prove the immediate family members’ relationship. These documents include a passport-size photograph of the family member and a copy of their valid passport. Additionally, you’ll need a copy of your Emirates ID, passport and residency page, proof of residence such as a tenancy contract, an employment contract, and bank statements from the past three months.

Duration and Limits of Parental Sponsorship

Parental sponsorship in the UAE is generally valid for one year and can be renewed annually. This is the case regardless of the duration of your visa. You and your sponsor spouse must also arrange medical insurance for your parents, ensuring it meets the minimum requirements, and this insurance must be renewed each year.

The cost of sponsoring parents includes a fee of $476 and a refundable deposit of $1360. This financial commitment serves as a guarantee for your parents sponsoring family members’ stay in the country. It’s mandatory to sponsor both parents together unless there’s a valid reason, such as the passing of one parent or a divorce, for which official documentation must be provided.

In some instances, evidence may be needed to show that you’re the sole provider for your parents and that there’s no one else to care for them in their home country. This requirement is in place to ensure the sponsorship system isn’t misused and to confirm that your parents genuinely need your support.

As stipulated by the Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA), the minimum salary requirement for sponsoring parents in Dubai is $5,446. This amount may differ in other emirates. It’s a good idea to check with the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICP) for the latest requirements, as these conditions are subject to change.

Two Women On Couch

Preparing for the Application

When you’re considering the sponsorship of parents in the UAE, it’s important to be well-prepared before starting the application process. You’ll need to get a handle on the financial requirements, secure the necessary documentation, ensure health insurance coverage, obtain a No Objection Certificate (NOC), and make suitable housing arrangements.

Gathering Necessary Documents

The first step is to collect all the required documents. You’ll need a passport-sized photograph of each family member you’re planning to sponsor. Make sure their passports are valid and keep copies handy. You’ll also need a copy of your Emirates ID, your family visa’s own passport, and the residency page.

Proof of residence, like a lease contract, is needed to show that you have suitable accommodation. Your labour contract and bank statements from the past three months will be necessary to establish your financial stability. Plus, you’ll need to prove family ties and present supporting documents that verify your family ties, which are a key part of the residency centres’ requirements.

Health Insurance Requirements

Securing health insurance for your parents is a mandatory part of the sponsorship process. The medical insurance policy itself must meet the minimum coverage requirements and be renewed annually to ensure your parents can access healthcare services during their stay in the UAE.

The specifics of the coverage may vary, so it’s wise to consult with the respective immigration department or a professional advisor to understand the exact requirements.

Obtaining No Objection Certificate (NOC)

An important administrative step is getting a No Objection Certificate (NOC). This document is a declaration that various authorities often require no one to object to the sponsorship and a dependency certificate during the application process.

The NOC acts as a formal endorsement of your intent to sponsor you’re how-to-sponsor parents in the UAE above.

Financial and Housing Arrangements

Being financially ready is a key factor in the sponsorship process. The sponsorship fee for parents is $477, along with a refundable deposit of $1360.

Housing is another critical consideration. Before applying for the family visa, you need to be living in suitable accommodation, which means at least a two-bedroom house or flat.

This requirement ensures that your parents will have a comfortable place to live during their stay.

It’s also important to note that if you’re looking to sponsor just one parent due to circumstances like the other parent being deceased or the parents being divorced, you’ll need to provide official documents as justification. Plus, you must prove that you’re the sole support for your parents and that there’s no one to take care of them in their home country.

Young Man With His Parents

The Application Process

Steps to Apply for Parent Sponsorship

To initiate the sponsorship process, you must first gather all necessary documentation. This includes passport-size photographs of your parents, their valid passport copies, your Emirates ID, passport and residency page, proof of residence like a lease contract, your labour contract, a medical test and three months of bank statements.

Submission through GDRFA

The GDRFA oversees the processing of applications. Ensure all required documents are submitted to the GDRFA for approval, including the application form, medical clearance certificates for those over 18, employment or company contracts, salary certificates, attested marriage certificates, and registered tenancy contracts.

Online vs. Offline Application Methods

Applications can be submitted through the GDRFA’s online platforms or in person at AMER Centers. The choice between digital submission and physical submission depends on your preference.

Processing Time and Tracking

The processing time for visa applications is typically around 48 hours, subject to variation based on individual circumstances. You can monitor the progress of your application using the provided application and reference numbers.

For tracking, the GDRFA-Dubai website is available for Dubai residents. Residents of other emirates can use the ICP website. Monitoring your application is crucial to address any issues promptly and inform you when your next parent’s visa can arrive.

The validity of your family’s residence permits is tied to your own. If your permit is cancelled, a six-month grace period is given to secure a new one. It’s essential to renew or cancel residence visas and dependents’ visas promptly to avoid penalties.

Legal Considerations and Compliance

Understanding UAE Residency Laws

Expatriate residents with a valid residence permit can bring their family members to the UAE. The eligibility to sponsor parents is contingent upon the sponsoring family demonstrating a certain income level.

Role of Typing Centres in the Application Process

Typing centres play a crucial role in the visa application process. They ensure that all paperwork, including the Emirates ID, bank account details, and necessary certificates, are correctly prepared for submission. These centres facilitate the application process, allowing for submissions to be made without the need for applicants to visit GDRFA offices directly, except for final permit endorsement or specific circumstances.

Legal Implications of Sponsorship

Sponsors must provide evidence of being the primary caregiver for their parents and that they lack adequate care in their home country. In situations where only one parent is being sponsored due to death or divorce, relevant documentation is required. Sponsors are also responsible for maintaining valid health insurance for their parents.

Compliance with Visa Conditions and Renewal

Adhering to visa conditions and timely renewals are essential to avoid legal repercussions. The UAE has introduced a new system for penalising immigration infractions, which can include fines and more severe consequences for serious violations.

After a residence visa expires, a 30-day grace period is granted to either exit the UAE, renew the valid residence visa elsewhere, or find a new sponsor. There are no fines during this period, but failure to take action leads to daily penalties. Similarly, Emirates ID holders have 30 days to renew their card after expiry, after which fines are imposed daily. Initiating the renewal process for both the residence visa and Emirates ID well before expiration or within the grace period is advisable to prevent fines. Renewal also requires passing the UAE Medical Fitness Test.

Young Man With Elderly Couple


Can I Bring My Parents To Dubai Permanently?

Permanent residency for parents in Dubai is not an option. However, you can apply for renewable residency permits for them. The permits are issued on an annual basis and are dependent on meeting the necessary salary and medical insurance provisions. It’s essential to keep abreast of any changes by consulting with immigration authorities.

Can Parents Get A Golden Visa In UAE?

The Golden Visa program in the UAE has been extended to include the visa holder’s parents. This allows for a 10-year residency without the need for additional deposits. For Retirement Golden Visa holders, parents can be sponsored for a one-year residency. The fees for a 10-year entry permit and a one-year residency under the Retirement Golden Visa are $1580 and $1300, respectively.

Securing Your Family’s Future in the UAE

Navigating the sponsorship process for your parents in the UAE is a role that comes with responsibilities and the utmost dedication to detail. Your commitment reflects your respect for the laws and traditions of the UAE and your affection for the family members you wish to bring closer. By meticulously preparing all necessary documents, understanding the legal implications, and ensuring compliance with the country’s residency regulations, you set the stage for a smooth and successful application.

Always stay proactive, keep up-to-date with the latest updates in legislation, and don’t hesitate to seek expert guidance when needed. Embrace the journey of reuniting with your loved ones and cherish the opportunity to create new memories in the UAE.

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