United Arab Emirates – Mandatory Health Insurance

What has changed

As per the Dubai Health Insurance Law No. 11, all residents in the Emirates of Dubai sponsored as either an ’employee’ or ‘investor/shareholder’ must have compulsory health insurance coverage from an authorized  Dubai Health Authority (DHA) approved insurance provider. The deadline to obtain insurance is December 31, 2016, by which time every person with a Dubai visa must have completed the requirement.

It is the responsibility of all companies in the Dubai mainland and free zones to provide their employees with insurance coverage, provided that the residence visas are sponsored by such companies.

In the past, residence visas could be processed without a health insurance policy; however, this is now a mandatory part of the visa process (new or renewal). Failure to obtain a health insurance policy can result in penalties.

Who is affected?

  • All companies in the Dubai mainland and free zones

What to expect

According to the law, all sponsors are legally liable to provide the essential insurance package and with the same coverage to all residents in the Emirates of Dubai sponsored as either an ’employee’ or ‘investor/shareholder’.

Health insurance will be linked to the new and renewal visa processes of Directorate General of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, Dubai. As a result, the processing time to obtain a residence visa will increase.

Failure to obtain health insurance coverage can lead to fines charged to the sponsor.

What you need to do
Planning ahead

  • It is the responsibility of the sponsor to ensure that their employees/dependants are covered under an approved insurance policy.
  • In the event that you, your dependents, or employees have not yet obtained insurance coverage in the UAE, we would recommend that you initiate the insurance application prior to the deadline in order to avoid any fines at the time of visa renewal.
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your client.

The information above was provided by Emigra Worldwide, our global network partners, and relevant government authorities. The information herein is for general purposes only and not intended as advice for a particular matter. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the global immigration professional with whom you work.