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UAE Golden Visa

In the matters of the migration policy, the UAE can be considered a relatively liberal country; thus, according to statistics, the vast majority of people living here are expats (about 88%), which makes foreign citizens to be the majority of the UAE residents. And although it is almost impossible to obtain citizenship in the UAE, the local authorities offer a good alternative – permanent residence visas for investors, employees, and property owners, for a period of 2, 3, 5, and 10 years, and in particular the golden visas in the UAE. Accordingly, there are several ways to obtain a permanent residence visa, depending on which category you belong to. Here we look at the Dubai gold visa, what it is, what opportunities it provides, how much it costs, and how to get it.

Benefits of a golden visa in the UAE

So, let's look at the opportunities provided by a UAE gold visa:

  • 0% of taxes on profits, dividends, and capital gains. In general, there are practically no taxes here. In fact, only 5% VAT applies here in case if the taxable annual income exceeds 385,000 dirhams. Another good news is that the UAE has signed over 70 double taxation agreements, including such countries such as France, England, Spain, India, Canada, etc.). This means that the income you receive here in the UAE is not taxed in your native country, and thus you are taxes receive at 0% tax rate. With the UAE golden visa, you will benefit from a tax-free environment of the UAE resident.
  • Great infrastructure. Unlike other jurisdictions where you also get a tax-free environment, for example, classical offshores, the UAE is an ultra-modern country with developed transport, medicine, and communications. There is no shortage of anything – any goods and services are available. Dubai gold visa is your ticket to the world of wealth and prosperity.
  • Stability and safety. Thanks to a well-thought-out security policy, there are almost no crimes here, so you can even leave your car open at night; it won't go anywhere by morning. Besides, there are no revolutions and social unrest here so that you can be sure about your investments and money in a bank.
  • Good legal protection for residents. Local courts protect residents' rights in the same way as for local citizens, and if your rights are violated for any reason, having a golden visa in the UAE, you can count on legal protection.
  • Cultural diversity and tolerance. Although it is a Muslim country, it is much more liberal to foreigners than other countries in the region. As long as you do not violate local laws, you can freely live here your usual life style.

The Golden Visa in the UAE allows you to get all the possible benefits from living and working in this country. Like other permanent residence visas, the gold visa entitles you to apply for visas for family members (husband/wife and minor children).

Who can apply for Dubai Golden Visa in 2020?

Until recently, only a few people could obtain the Dubai gold visa, including prominent scientists, heads of large companies, and large investors, but now the rules in the year 2020 and 2021 and the list of persons who can obtain the gold residence permit for 5 or 10 years in Dubai have been significantly expanded. For example, doctors, athletes, students, engineers, etc., were included in the list of persons who can apply for a gold visa in Dubai.

So, here is a list of those who, according to the latest changes, can get a Dubai gold visa for 10 years:

  • Scientists who have got a Ph.D. degree in one of the top 500 universities. Such specialists can apply for a golden visa for 10 years.
  • Doctors. Given the recent events in the world, namely the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the UAE authorities are trying to keep the situation under control, so they invite doctors, in particular epidemiologists, and offer them a gold visa for 10 years.
  • Engineers. In this category, specialists in electronic engineering, electrical engineering, IT, artificial intelligence, and those working with data can apply for a gold visa in the UAE. Now there are hundreds of infrastructure projects in the country at different completion stages, so the authorities are continually striving to attract promising engineers.
  • Scientists (no Ph.D. degree). Not only PhDs can apply for the golden visa in the UAE. Aspiring scientists and researchers can also receive residency for 10 years if they have been accredited by the UAE Council of Scientists or were awarded by the Dubai Sheikh medals for achievements in the field of science.
  • Inventors. If you have a patent for an invention or copyright certificate for intellectual property registered in the UAE, you can also apply for a Dubai gold visa for 10 years. But, the patent must be of real value to the economy and must be approved by the Ministry of Economic.
  • Artists. The representatives of this category can also apply for a gold visa in Dubai if they are approved by the UAE Ministry of Culture.
  • Large investors. Representatives of this category can obtain a gold visa in the UAE if their total investment in the country's economy exceeds 10 million dirhams (for more details on investors' requirements, see below).

Now let's look at the list of those who can apply for the gold visa in the UAE for 5 years:

  • Investors. In general, investors receive a residence visa for three years (when registering a business in the country) or two years, three or five years (when investing in real estate). But if the total amount of funds invested in the UAE economy is more than AED 500,000, or if there is approval from an accredited business incubator, a person can get a gold residence permit for 10 years. Like with a regular resident visa, 5 years golden visa holder can apply for visas for his/her family members for the same period. A visa for 5 years is issued to spouses and children, partners, and the company's head.
  • Prospective students. If students have at least 95% academic performance in one of the public or private high schools and students who study at universities in the country and abroad and their GPA is more than 3.75 they are aso entitied for this visa type. The long-term visa also applies to families of such students.

As you can see, now a lot more people can get a gold visa for 5 and 10 years.

Golden visa in the UAE. Requirements for investors

Regarding employees, the rules and requirements for them are determined by the relevant ministries and government agencies in the area in which they work. As for investors, they can apply for a 10-year golden visa under the following conditions:

  • The total amount of investments in the economy is more than 10 million dirhams, for example:
    1. a deposit for the specific amount to the country's investment fund;
    2. formation of a company with capital for this amount;
    3. partnership in an existing/new company with a share for a specified amount;
    4. a total investment of AED 10 million, provided the investment in the real estate sector is less than 40% of the total.
  • The invested funds were not taken on credit.
  • Funds must remain in the local economy for at least three years.
  • If the investment is made by a group of investors, they all can apply for a golden visa, provided each partner contributes a share of 10 million UAE dirhams.

In addition to the investor himself, the executive director can obtain a gold visa; family members also receive visas for the same period (dependent person visa).

As for the requirements for the list of documents for applying for a visa, it varies depending on the nature of the applicant's activities, as well as the chosen jurisdiction.

UAE golden visa cost

The cost of a gold visa in the UAE for 5 or 10 years is comparable to a regular residence visa. If you collect the documents yourself and apply (without the help of a consulting company), the cost of a gold residence permit and the government processing fees greatly vary depending on its exact type and the exact fees and costs can be provided upon each particular request.

Alternative to golden visa in the UAE – residence visa

Indeed, a golden visa in Dubai is a good solution for obtaining residence status in the UAE. Still, only a very limited number of people (listed above) can take advantage of this opportunity in practice. For the rest, there is an excellent alternative – a residence visa in the UAE, which is issued to the following categories:

  • Employee visa. Most foreign citizens get this type of visa. It is issued for 3 years, and if a person continues to work in the UAE, the document can be easily extended for another 3 years.
  • Visa for property owners. In case you have bought a residential property in the UAE, and its price is more than 1 million dirhams, you can get a residence visa. It is issued for 2 years, and by the end of this period, it can also be extended (unless, of course, you sell your property). But you cannot work in the country with this type of visa (you must obtain a separate permit for this).
  • Investor visa for business people. This type of visa is issued to people who have opened a company in one of the free zones (or outside of them), but a company must not of offshore type; an offshore company does not give the right to obtain a resident visa. The document is issued for 3 years, and it can also be renewed.

In each of the above cases, you can apply for visas for your family members (husband/wife and minor children). In this case, you will have to provide proof that you have housing in the country and provide confirmation on your income, as well as provide documents confirming the marriage and birth certificates of children.

Regardless of the type of visa you have, the document can be extended at the end of its validity period. For this, you go through the standard procedure (if your circumstances have not changed, that is, you continue to work, you have your company or real estate).

Like in the case with other types of visas, you can deal with the registration by yourself or entrust this issue to our consulting company. In the first case, you save on the cost of this service, but at the same time you do all the paperwork by yourself, and in the second case, for a certain fee, consultants take over all the organizational work, you get a guaranteed result in the shortest possible time.

UAE Golden Visa FAQs

Can a gold visa holder stay outside the UAE for more than 180 days a year?

This rule applies to ordinary residence visa holders, but golden visa holders are exempt from it. A gold visa holder can be out of the UAE for more than 180 days a year. However, this is not a fixed rule as for different types there may be different applicable rules.

What categories of people can get a gold visa in the UAE in 2020?

In 2020, the list of persons who can obtain a gold residence permit has been expanded: large investors and entrepreneurs, high-class engineers, doctors, scientists, promising students.

How long does it take to process documents for a gold visa?

From the moment of submission of documents, the processing time is from 8 to 14 days.

What to do when the golden visa expires?

After 5 or 10 years, it can be renewed while you go through a standard simple procedure.

If my business goes bankrupt, will my visa be canceled?

All issues on a gold visa are decided on an individual basis, but it is considered valid until the visa has expired.

Is there an age limit for a Golden Visa recipient?

No, anyone of any age who is enttled for this visa type as per the applicable regulations can get a gold visa in the UAE.

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