Working on a Husband’s Visa in Dubai
We often get asked whether a wife under her husband’s sponsorship can work or not, as if your residency is sponsored by you husband, there is a stamp in the passport saying “Housewife- not allowed to work”. We look into whether you can actually work legally if in this situation.
Your husband can sponsor you to be a resident of Dubai but unless you are working for him, him being a business owner, you cannot get a labour/ work permit through your husband. Basically if you want to work the company you are going to work for has to apply for the labour permit for you- you cannot work for them legally without this.
So in a nutshell- your husband can sponsor you to actually live here legally but a company must provide you with a work permit to work here legally.
Some women do work casually or part time on what they call “their husband’s visa” but this leaves them wide open to problems. Not only is it illegal and both the company and the worker can get fined, have a labour ban placed or even deported, but if a dispute over pay for example arises the woman will have no legal recourse to make a case or claim as she is not officially employed. So the Labour Law will not protect her in this case.
Many wives come to Dubai as “trailing spouses” and are not planning to work but maybe change their mind once here. Many women choose to go onto their husband’s residency sponsorship as they potentially get better benefits this way from a husband’s company by having a family status allowances for flights, accommodation, school fees and medical coverage. Also if you do want to change jobs you can cancel or transfer your labour card and still have your residency continuing.
Rules for applying to sponsor your wife or husband
A husband can sponsor his wife whether she is employed or not as long as minimum salary requirements are met- these are susceptible to change and at the moment it is a salary of 4,000 AED or 3,000 AED if accommodation is provided.
A wife can sponsor their husband if she is working in a qualified profession like a teacher, a doctor, an engineer or equivalent. The qualified wife must have a minimum salary of 5,000 AED. The rules for occupation are more flexible if the wife is earning in excess of 10,000 AED.
You can only sponsor your partner if you are legally married- certification of this is required.
So in summary- if you are on your husband’s residency sponsorship you can work- as long as you get a labour card/ work permit from the company you are going to work for and your husband issues an NOC letter.
NOC Letter Sample Text
Once you have secured your job and if you are sponsored by your husband’s visa then you will need a letter of no objection from him to give to your new employer. Your new employer will also give you your own labour card.
Below is a suggested outline of the letter:
[Name of employer and/or To Whom It May Concern]
This is to certify that I, [husband's full name as on passport], holder of [country] Passport No xxxxxx have no objection to my wife, [wife's full name as on passport], holder of [country] passport No. xxxxxx undertaking [full-time or part-time] employment at [company name].
Should any further information be required, please contact me on the telephone number/s below.
Your husband's name and signature
Your husband's telephone number [mobile and/or home/work]
Your husband's company
Your husband's company seal/stamp
NB: Maids/ Home Help
Maids etc. come under a different category at the Ministry Of Labour and are not allowed to work even if they have a residency sponsored by the husband. They have to be sponsored for their residency and work permit by their employer.