How to Change Your Employment Visa to an Investor Visa in UAE

How to Change Your Employment Visa to an Investor Visa in UAE

You came to Dubai, were sponsored by a UAE-based company, and began working here. That’s simple! You did not have to do anything to get your work permit, residence visa, or Emirates ID. Your boss made everything available to you. So far, it has all been a no-brainer for you! But now that you want to start a business in your favorite country, things are not as simple as they were when you were working as an employee in Dubai, but they can be if you know how to switch from an employment visa to a business visa.

Only those with a trade license and a valid visa are permitted to conduct business in Dubai. The former allows you to start a specific trade or business in a specific area or location of the UAE, whereas the latter officially allows you to enter, leave, or stay in the country for a set period of time. Please contact A&A Associate for more information on business formation in Dubai.

UAE Employment Visa vs UAE Business Visa

Both employment and business visas allow foreign nationals to work in the UAE, but the first allows them to work as a worker or employee, whereas the second allows them to work as an employer. Let us learn a little more about them.


UAE Employment Visa 

A UAE Employment Visa allows a person from any country to work for an employer on the mainland or in a free zone in the UAE. The UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) and the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) of the emirate where a person is employed are both involved in the process of obtaining a work visa. A UAE employment entry visa, also known as a pink visa, is an official document issued by the MoHRE to a foreign national upon the request of an entity registered in the UAE that is hiring the individual. This permit allows the holder to legally enter and remain in the UAE for 30 days while their employer applies for the residence visa on their behalf. It has a validity of two months and can be extended twice while the formal work permit is approved. When a foreigner enters the country with an entry permit, they are granted a residence visa.


Business Visa for the UAE

A business visa, on the other hand, allows one to trade in the UAE and to sponsor themselves and their family for long-term residency. UAE Business Visa, also known as Dubai Partner Visa or Investor Visa, is part of the Golden Visa system, which allows foreigners to obtain long-term visas for themselves and their dependents. Foreign nationals who want to start their own business or invest in an already established business in Dubai can apply for a Dubai investor visa. The Dubai investor visa allows the holder to live in the UAE and come and go as they please during the visa’s validity period. You can contact A&A Associate for business formation in Dubai.

Read more about family Visa 


Dubai Job-to-Business Transition

Those who are already working in the UAE under their employer’s sponsorship should be aware that the process of canceling an existing employment visa and applying for a new business visa takes time. Nonetheless, fully understanding the time-consuming, laborious process makes the task much easier. Continue reading to learn how to convert an employment visa to a business visa. Here’s a primer on converting your employment visa to a business visa.


Cancel Your Current Employment Visa

To be eligible for a new visa, you must cancel your current one. Because the visa is sponsored by your employer, you must have them submit a cancellation request to the issuing authority. If your employment visa is canceled, your job will be terminated, and you will have only 29 days from the date of cancellation to stay in the country (provided the visa was still valid at the time of cancellation) and apply for the visa you want. To avoid delays in the processing of your visa application, make sure you have no outstanding fines. If you do, pay them right away.


Get a new entry permit

If your current employment visa is canceled, you can apply for a “new entry permit” This permit has a validity period of 60 calendar days and is essentially a temporary work visa.

Read more about Business license 


Status Change or Status Adjustment Application

‘Status change’ is a required step to be taken before the grace period expires, or else the UAE government will levy fines. Status change, also known as “status adjustment,” is the process of reactivating an entry permit without physically leaving the country. If you overstay your visa, you will almost certainly be fined until the status change is completed. Visa status can be changed in one of three ways:

  • Changes to In-Country Status
  • Adjustment of Out of Country Status
  • The Border Run

Be aware that while applying for a visa entry permit, applicants are not permitted to leave the UAE until their visas have been stamped.


Steps to Obtain an Emirates ID Card: 

  • Medical Exam and Biometrics

Emirates ID, issued by the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship, is an identity card for UAE citizens and residents. It is a document required to live and work in any emirate of the country while enjoying benefits reserved for residents only, such as access to school, insurance, banking, and anything else that requires the presentation of an identification card. You can apply for an Emirates ID electronically. To obtain an Emirates ID, you must first visit an ID service center to provide your biometrics and undergo a medical examination including blood tests and X-Ray.


  • Stamp Your Residence Visa

This is the final step in starting your own business in Dubai or any other emirate of the UAE. Get your residence visa stamped, which confirms your eligibility to work and live in the UAE for a specific period of time. Once all of the preceding steps have been completed, your passport will be stamped with a UAE residency visa stamp. Changing visas usually takes one month. Remember that if you leave the country for more than 180 days in a row, your visa may be invalidated. You must visit the UAE every six months to maintain your resident status.

Dubai Is Now Your Playground. After receiving your business visa, you are free to conduct your business by establishing a company in Dubai Mainland, Free Zone, Offshore, or in any other location in the UAE of your choosing. If you have decided to jump into the UAE’s ocean of business from the well of your job, the only limit is your imagination. You can contact our qualified advisers for business setup in Dubai at A&A Associate for any type of business/investor visa or business setup assistance. We are delighted to assist you at every stage of your entrepreneurial journey, whether you intend to launch a real estate company, an e-commerce venture, a beauty salon, a grocery store, or a digital marketing firm. Please contact us to set up your free consultation. Please contact us at +971564086728 or [email protected].

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