The Ultimate Guide to the UAE Golden Visa

The United Arab Emirates has always been reluctant to grant citizenship to foreigners in the country. The country’s strict policies regarding the same made it all the more surprising when it announced its citizenship by investment program. The government will now confer citizenship to qualifying investors, special talents, and their families.

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Understanding the UAE Golden Visa

The Golden Visa is a unique residency visa that permits foreign nationals to stay in the UAE for an extended period of time. The visa is issued for a 5 or 10-year period depending on the needs of the individual. Many individuals acquired it after its introduction. The visa holders will not have their visa revoked if they exit the country for more than 6 months.

A visa that allows individuals to reside, work and study in the United Arab Emirates for longer periods of time.

How to apply for the Golden Visa UAE

The UAE Golden Visa, also known as the Dubai Golden Visa, can be acquired through a few simple steps.

Step 1 Entry into the UAE – You will have to apply for a visit visa to enter the country.
Step 2 Make the investment and organize all the necessary documents.
Step 3 Begin your application with the required documentation. The approval of your application will grant you a 6 months multiple-entry visa.
Step 4 The status of your visa will be informed via text message and email.

The Golden Visa UAE comes with a range of benefits. Some of the benefits include:

  • Golden Visa holders and their dependents can stay in the UAE for an extended time.
  • The visa holders receive exclusive healthcare benefits and packages.
  • The visa holders can leave the UAE for extended periods without risking the validity of their visa.
  • Golden visa holders do not require sponsorship.
  • Visa holders can employ any number of domestic helpers, including maids and drivers.

Can you get the Golden Visa UAE?

The Golden Visa is granted to only a few depending on investment and talent. The process can be highly nuanced and might require a lot of planning and organization. You can apply for a golden visa if you are an:

  • Investor
  • Entrepreneur
  • Highly skilled worker
  • Exceptional talent
  • Outstanding student
  • Frontline heroes
  • Scientists and others.

If you fit into any of these categories, you can apply for the Golden Visa through the government’s portal.

The 10-year UAE Residence Visa

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You can apply for the 10-year Dubai residence visa as an investor or exceptional talent. While the application process differs, the Golden Visa benefits remain the same.

As an investor

You are required to make a minimum investment of AED 10 million to apply for the visa. You can deposit the amount in a local investment fund or form a business with the same capital. Partnering with an existing business with a share value of the same amount is also applicable. It is also noteworthy that the visa will be extended to your business partners if each contributes the minimum amount of AED 10 million. However, there are a few requirements for the same:

  • The investor should have the financial competence of up to AED 10 million
  • Valid proof that the investor has not taken a loan for the investment
  • The investor should keep the investment for a minimum period of 3 years

Residence visa for special talents

The UAE government will permit individuals with unique talents to obtain the Golden Visa. This applies to individuals who are scientists, doctors or inventors, as well as other specialists in different fields. Creative individuals can also apply for the visa. The visa will be extended to the spouses and children of the visa holder. The individuals must have a legitimate job contract in their field of specialization in the UAE. Some of the requirements for applying for the Golden Visa under this category include the following:

Scientist Accreditation by the Emirates Scientists Council is required.
Creative in the field of culture or art Accreditation by the Ministry of Culture and Youth.
Inventor Recommendation by the Ministry of Economy.
Exceptional talent Patents or publication in a renowned journal.
Executive Own an internationally established company or high academic achievement

If you are a doctor or a specialist in a different field, you are required to meet a minimum of two of the following criteria:

  • Contribution to crucial scientific research.
  • Publication of articles or books.
  • Specialization in fields that the UAE government prioritizes.
  • D. degree from one of the top 500 universities in the world.
  • Membership in an organization in that field.
  • 10 years of experience in their field of expertise.
  • Recognized awards or certifications.

While the UAE citizenship benefits are many, a Golden Visa holder also enjoys many perks. The rigid system in place for citizenship makes it easier for individuals to apply for the Golden Visa.

The 5-year UAE Residence Visa

Applications for the 5-year UAE residence visa can be made by investors, entrepreneurs, and exceptional students. The qualifications for each of these categories differ.

  • Investors are required to invest in a property worth a minimum of AED 5 million. The individual must keep the property for a minimum of 3 years and cannot take a loan out for the same.
  • The 5-year UAE residence visa will be granted to entrepreneurs with existing projects with a capital of AED 500,000. You might also be eligible if an accredited incubator has approved your business in the UAE. The visa can be extended to your spouse and children.
  • Students who have excelled in their studies will also be eligible for the visa. They will be able to extend their visa to their family.

There are many incredible opportunities for investors and unique talents in the UAE, making the Golden Visa an excellent way for individuals to live, work or study in the country.

Fees for the Golden Visa UAE

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The fees for the Golden Visa depend on a few factors. From the type of visa you are applying for to where you are applying from, there will be a range of different criteria that will determine the cost of getting your permit.

Applications will range from AED 2,800 to AED 3,800 if you apply within the UAE, while the prices go from AED 3,800 to AED 4,800 if you apply from outside the UAE.

The Golden Visa permits the holder to retain their visa even when they exit the country for long periods of time. This is one of the many Golden Visa UAE benefits.

UAE Golden Visa for every category

The Golden Visa has been granted to many individuals. The recent amendment in the scheme, which brought down the minimum monthly salary required for skilled professionals from AED 50,000 to AED 30,000, resulted in many individuals applying for the same.

The UAE Golden Visa for unique talents covers a range of categories. Here’s a list of some of the fields and the requirements for the same.

Category Requirement for application
Doctors A labor contract from the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation, copy of labor card and sponsored residency.
Retired Foreigners Deposit value or income of AED 15,000 or real estate ownership of AED 1 million.
Athletes Letter of recommendation from General Authority of Sports in Dubai or Dubai Sports Council and a sponsored passport.
Creative Specialists Letter of recommendation from Dubai Culture and Arts Authority and a sponsored passport.

Depending on your specialization, you will be required to submit particular documents. The fees will also vary accordingly.

An Introduction to Citizenship by Investment and Talent

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UAE citizenship by investment and talent is a significant move made by the government to invite foreign nationals to invest in the country. This enhances the country’s economy as businessmen from across the world invest in the UAE for the purpose of obtaining citizenship.

From scientists to artists, a wide range of professionals can apply for citizenship based on particular criteria. UAE citizenship comes from showcasing exceptional talent, and the UAE cabinet, councils and local courts determine the eligibility of the applicants.

How to get UAE citizenship

UAE citizenship can be obtained through four different means. They include the following:

  • By descent
  • By marriage
  • By naturalization
  • By exceptional merit

Citizenship by descent requires the individual to have been born to an Emirati father or Emirati mother (without a legally recognized father). Individuals can also seek citizenship if they were born to unknown parents in the country. Being born in the UAE does not guarantee the individual UAE citizenship.

Women marrying an Emirati man will receive citizenship after 7 years if they have a child together and in 10 years if they don’t. The foreigner should have a valid UAE residence visa and a clean criminal record.

On the other hand, citizenship by naturalization is granted to individuals who have lived in the UAE for over 30 years.

Individuals can now receive citizenship by showcasing exceptional merit. Creative individuals, investors, inventors and scientists can all apply for citizenship.

Benefits of UAE citizenship

Acquiring citizenship in a different country has its benefits and drawbacks. If you are wondering whether citizenship is worth the hassle, here are a few advantages you could consider:

  • The ability to live, work and study in the country without restriction. This is highly beneficial if you plan on settling in the UAE for the rest of your life.
  • You can add your spouse and children to the program, granting them citizenship by default.
  • You can purchase property and other assets without the restrictions faced by foreign nationals.
  • The UAE passport allows you to travel visa-free to a long list of countries. This is a massive benefit if you enjoy traveling and your current passport requires applying for visas to visit most countries.

There are many other benefits to UAE citizenship, including the ability to open bank accounts without complications. The UAE offers much more than luxury brands and experiences, and its citizenship is useful and profitable.

Other Types of UAE Residency Visas

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Foreign nationals can reside in the UAE by obtaining any of the different types of residency visas available. While the Golden Visa allows foreigners the freedom of living in the UAE with many benefits, the other types of visas may not be as beneficial. Other types of residency visas include:

Employment Visa

This residency visa is given to individuals working in the UAE by their employer. The visa will allow the individual to live and work in the UAE. In this scenario, the employer is considered the sponsor of the individual. The employment visa is valid for 2 years in a mainland company and 3 years in a freezone company.

Family Visa

On receiving a residency visa, an expat can sponsor their immediate family. This allows them to live in the UAE along with them. The family visa is connected to the sponsor’s visa, and the visa’s validity will depend on the sponsor’s visa type.

Domestic Workers Visa

Expats in the UAE can employ domestic workers and provide them with a residency visa. Housekeepers, cooks, drivers and other workers can be sponsored by their employers. These visas will be valid for a year and can be renewed or canceled by the sponsor.

Student Visa

Students wishing to study in the UAE can apply for a Student Visa. It is issued for 1 year and can be renewed based on the course or program.

Other types of UAE residency visas, including remote working visas and specialist residence visas, will help working individuals to reside and work in the United Arab Emirates.

Why the UAE?

The United Arab Emirates is a multi-diverse nation which allows foreign individuals to work and conduct business in the country using its resources. It is one of the world’s safest countries and an impressive tourist destination. With excellent infrastructure and commendable medical facilities, the UAE residency is on every individual’s radar.

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