A guide to insurance in the UAE for residents and tourists
18 November 2019| Last updated on 18 December 2019
What kind of insurances are available in UAE? And how much are the premiums? Read on to know more...
One of the best things about working and living as an expatriate in the UAE is that the Arab nation is always full of new surprises, but not all surprises are good. All sorts of unexpected events may happen at any point in time.
Some expats may have heard stories of residents and visitors whose emergency hospital bills crossed over AED 100,000 due to not having medical insurance, or thousands of dirhams of vehicle repair costs that could have been avoided with car insurance.
The bottom line is that in order to stay on the safe side, being aware of the types of insurances in the UAE can save on unnecessary costs and stress.
This guide to insurance in the UAE is to help you better prepare yourself for when the unexpected occurs while living and working in the country.
Health and medical insurance
Free healthcare in the UAE is only available to Emiratis. For expat residents and visitors, health insurance would greatly benefit patients should a medical-related event take place. The UAE government's regulation states that anyone who plans to enter the UAE as a resident, tourist, or on a multi-visa, must secure health insurance.
Health insurance will typically be between employers and employees. The extent of coverage for employers and their dependents is determined by the employee's salary, designation etc.
In the emirate of Abu Dhabi, employers and sponsors are responsible for providing health insurance coverage for their employees and their families, which is up to 1 spouse and 3 children under 18 years old.
In Dubai, employers are required to provide health insurance coverage for their employees. Sponsors are required to get health insurance for their resident dependents, which is also for 1 spouse and 3 children under 18 years old.
This form of insurance in the UAE covers three categories related to property for owners and those leasing.
1. Protection for personal belongings
This involves covering personal items that an individual would carry frequently when they're outside of their property, which can include the following:
- Electronics - laptops and phones
- Accessories - clothes, watches, and jewellery
It's a great, optional property insurance for those who find themselves frequently worrying about their personal, expensive belongings as it will usually allow the individual to replace the lost or damaged item.
2. Protection for your property's structure
Property insurance in regards to your home will involve the brick or concrete structure, and will protect the homeowner in the event of accidental damage, water damages from leaks, fires, and natural damages (earthquakes, rain, etc.)
The building insurance can be extended to the swimming pool or garage, which would be within your property's premises. It's worth noting that the "sum insured" (or value of the building), will not be the current market value of the property or the original price you purchased it for. The insurance will cover the cost to rebuilt in case the property has been damaged.
3. Protection for contents
Contents insurance will cover household items against theft, accidental damage, water damages from leaks, fires, and natural damages (earthquakes, rain, etc.) if these items are inside the building.
This can include items such as furniture, interior decorations, electronics, and kitchen appliances. However, this is limited as some items will fall under the protection for personal belongings, as mentioned above.
The sum insured will be the total value of all the household items owned inside the property, which would cover the costs of replacing all the items if they were damaged or lost.
Public liability insurance
To protect you and your business from receiving claims from clients and third parties, public liability insurance in the UAE offers cover against such events. This includes cases where a third party person is injured or their property is damaged while they're on your business premises or as a result of your business activities.
This type of insurance is used by businesses that are involved with...
- Regular visits/interaction with customers, guests, or the public (for example a restaurant or a venue that offers adrenaline activities)
- Carrying out business activities at a client's premises
- Owning or leading a premises
If you're a resident travelling out of the UAE and to a country that is not of your origin, it's recommended to apply for travel insurance ahead of your trip. The insurance will typically cover unexpected events such as lost baggage, health-related emergencies, death, repatriation, and more.
Travel insurance from the UAE may be purchased from an insurance company, travel agency, and at certain consulates you are applying for your visa in (for example, the Italian consulate in Dubai offers travel insurance along with your travel visa application).
Should any of the cases covered under your travel insurance occur, it will likely save you from the possibility of high expenses.
List of registered insurance companies in UAE
The UAE has several insurance companies, many of which provide Islamic insurance, or takaful. Here is the full list of insurance companies in the UAE registered with the country's Insurance Authority:
- Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company
- FMC Network UAE MC LLC
- ACE Insurance Brokers L.L.C
- Ali Omer Golam Morshed
- Emirates Insurance Company (PSC)
- Maxcare MiddleEast LLC
- Nas Administration Services LLC
- ِAl Ain Ahlia Insurance Company
- Aon Middle East CO L.L.C
- Penta Care Medical LLC
- Integra Technical Services Middle East Limited
- National Life and General Insurance Company SAOG
- Chedid Europe Reinsurance Brokrage Limited
- Friends Provident International Limited
- CHUBB Tempest Life ReInsurance Ltd
- Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co.Ltd
- Jordan Insurance Co. Ltd
- State Life Insurance Corporation Of Pakistan Foreign Company Branch
- Zurich International Life Limited