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Residence visa rules for expats' parents relaxed

posted on 02/05/2002: 1374 views

Expatriates in Dubai can now sponsor their parents on residence visa under a new facility introduced last month by the Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department (DNRD) on humanitarian considerations, according to a senior DNRD official. An expatriate who is allowed to sponsor his or her parents on humanitarian basis will be required to pay an amount of Dh5,000 and has to take a health insurance policy from a private sector insurance company for each parent, Colonel Saeed Mattar bin Bleilah, director of the department, told Khaleej Times yesterday.

"The sum of Dh5,000 will be charged for each parent as a one-time security deposit, refundable when the sponsored parent dies or leaves the country for good after getting the residence visa cancelled," Col Saeed said. The health insurance, however, will have to be renewed every year and is a pre-requisite for renewal of the residence visa which will be given for one year and will be renewable.

"The annual health insurance cover requirement is meant to ensure that the parent receives proper medical treatment in the private sector in case of illness. Elderly people in general are more prone than others to diseases and need special health care and attention," the director of DNRD observed.

It is understood that one of the main reasons for placing restrictions on sponsoring parents, under a cabinet order, was the fact that many expatriates brought their parents to the UAE mainly to benefit from the free health services offered by the government and this was proving to be a big burden on the health services system.

Explaining the procedures to be followed by applicants wishing to avail themselves of the new facility Col Saeed said: "An applicant has to prove to the department that there is a humanitarian issue that requires him to sponsor his one or both parents, he being the sole supporter. A letter from the applicant's consulate certifying that he is the sole supporter will be required." Other requirements to be met by the applicant are those stipulated by the UAE cabinet, such as minimum salary and valid residence visa.

"If the department is convinced about the humanitarian circumstances it will treat the application as a genuine case and will accord approval, after which the applicant can complete the process of sponsoring his parents on residence visa by furnishing the deposit and the health insurance policy," Col Saeed said.

The DNRD director said that a few applications for sponsoring parents on residence visa have been submitted since the introduction of this facility, adding that sponsors would have to be a relatives of the 'first degree', such as son or daughter, of the people to be sponsored. (The Khaleej Times)


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