Abu Dhabi: The Health Authority Abu Dhabi has issued a circular stating that employers and sponsors should submit a one-month notice to health insurance companies prior to the expiry date of their health insurance.

Failure to renew the health insurance policy will result in a penalty of Dh300 monthly for every person without an insurance coverage.

As stipulated in the Health Insurance Law No 23, trade licences will not be issued or renewed without the employer submitting evidence of health insurance subscription for his employees for the previous period.

An employer is not permitted to apply for a work visa for any employee without submitting evidence of subscription in the health insurance scheme.

According to article 12 of the Bylaw, the Department of Naturalisation and Residency in Abu Dhabi may not issue or renew any residency visa unless the health insurance policy is enclosed with the application. Residencies may not be renewed without submitting evidence of health insurance subscription for the previous period requiring health insurance.

"Employers and sponsors are liable to ensure that their employees who are working or residing in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and their families, wife and three children under the age of 18, are covered by valid health insurance at all time," said Dr Finn Goldner, Head of Health System Financing, HAAD.

Dr Finn added that health insurance policies should be renewed annually and not every three years with the renewal of the residency visa. "The Department of Naturalisation and Residency in Abu Dhabi will not renew residencies unless an evidence of health insurance subscription for the previous period is presented."

HAAD clarified that if employers or sponsors failed to notify the insurance companies about their desire to renew the health insurance policies within the required time frame, they will be responsible for all medical expenses incurred by their employees during the uncovered period in addition to any financial penalty.

However, if the health insurance companies were notified within the set time frame and there were delays in processing the renewals, the employers or sponsors can claim all of the medical expenses from the health insurance companies.

HAAD has already started implementing all required procedures for the health insurance which were circulated to all stakeholders involved in the health insurance scheme and are committed to providing health insurance policies, procedures, and necessary guidelines to encourage all stakeholders to adequately implement the health insurance law.