Abu Dhabi: A three-month grace period starting from May 18 has been given to residency law violators to leave the country, authorities have announced.
Residency violators will also be exempted from fines, including residents who overstay after their residency visas expired, as well as visitors who overstay their visit visas.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship held an online media briefing to familiarise ambassadors and consuls general accredited to the UAE about the latest updates on the grace period given to overstaying residents and visitors.
Major General Saeed Rakan Al Rashidi, Director General of Foreigners Affairs and Ports at the authority, said the COVID-19 crisis had contributed to restricting movement of individuals to renew their residency visa. “In view of these exceptional conditions, a decision has been taken to exempt all residency and entry violators, provided that they want to leave the country and return to their countries,” he said.
As per the move, all administrative fines will be waived for illegal residents and everyone with expired residency and visit visa.
The amnesty includes residency violators and those who violated entry and visa permits, including absconders from their sponsors, and violators of employment contracts and labour cards if the violation occurs before March 1, 2020.
Maj. Gen Al Rashidi explained that violators will not benefit from these exemptions if they wish to adjust their status and stay in the UAE.
The amnesty includes all illegal residents and visitors who want to leave the country. They will be waived from fines for Identity card and from departure fees, cancelation of permits and renewal of labour permits. These categories can re-enter the country if they get new employment contracts, Al Rashidi said.
A press conference will be held on Thursday to unveil more details on the waiver and exemptions.