Stock office workers staff Dubai
According to Ministry of Human Resources and Emiritisation (MOHRE), there are seven requirements every company in the UAE must follow in order to get a work permit. Picture used for illustrative purposes. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramzan/Gulf News

Dubai: If you have your own business or are an entrepreneur planning to hire new employees, there are a few conditions that you need to keep in mind when hiring someone who is not currently in the UAE.

According to an online post by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiritisation (MOHRE) on Tuesday, May 30, there are seven requirements every company in the UAE must follow in order to get a work permit.

Here are all the details.


7 rules for issuing a work permit in the UAE

As per MOHRE, here are the conditions every employer should follow:

1. Electronic permits should be available at the establishment.

According to Shahjahan Elameulavil, office manager Dubai-based First Gate Business Services, this refers to the fact that establishments should have establishment card issued by the MOHRE. “Free zone companies only have an establishment card issued by the immigration department, however, companies operating on the mainland have two establishment cards – one issued by the immigration department and another card issued by MOHRE,” he said.

2. The minimum age requirement is 18 years old.

3. The application must meet requirements for specialised professions.

“Different categories have different formalities for work permit application. For the skilled category, employers should provide the education certificate, as per the profession applied for,” Elameulavil said.

4. The worker's profession should match with the establishment's activity.

5. The establishment must have a valid licence.

6. Application must be submitted by an authorised representative of the establishment

7. There should be no existing active work permit for the recruited worker.

According to the UAE’s information portal –, MOHRE may refrain from issuing or renewing, or may cancel work permits if the establishment:

• Provides incorrect documents
• Is fictitious or does not exercise its registered activity
• Is not compliant with the ‘Wages Protection System’ or any other system adopted for the regulation of the national labour market.

Cost of work permits in the UAE

The cost of issuing and renewing work permits ranges from Dh250 to Dh3,450 because it depends on the company’s classification - A, B or C.

This is according to Cabinet Resolution No. (37) Of 2022, which amends a few conditions of a previous resolution from 2020 (Resolution No. 21 of 2020) regarding service fees and administrative fines within MOHRE.

The classification represents the extent of companies’ compliance with the UAE’s labour law, the Wages Protection System, relevant MoHRE resolutions and directives, laws relating to workers’ rights and with the policy of promoting cultural and demographic diversity.

Companies found violating the Labour Law, and lack of commitment are placed in category C.

Illegal to work in the UAE without a work permit

According to Article 6 of the UAE’s Labour Law, regarding the recruitment and employment of workers, it is illegal for a person to work in the UAE without a valid work permit issued according to the procedures set out by MOHRE.

If an employer is found employing a worker without the necessary work permit, the fine can go up to Dh200,000, as per Article 60 of the Labour Law.