Freelancers were legalized in the UAE in 2017. Designers, tutors, sports coaches, and media personalities can now get a permit and offer their services legally anywhere in the UAE. They can obtain a Dubai freelance visa and become UAE residents.
Freelance Visa Vs. Freelance License in UAE
A freelance visa is a UAE residency visa that permits freelancers to live in the country. It’s like a self-visa where no company or sponsor is behind you. The visa is issued depending on the work permit for a freelancer. A freelance permit can be obtained from the licensing authorities-in most cases, free zones.
A freelance license in UAE is a permit given to freelancers that allows them to provide their services legally across the country. If you’re a freelancer and your visa is under your company or spouse, you may not require a resident visa, but you must have a freelance license.
Note that a freelance visa is optional, but a freelance license is mandatory for anyone willing to work as a freelancer.
Advantages of Obtaining a Freelance Visa in UAE
- The freelance visa allows you to work for multiple companies. If you don’t want a 9-5 job, becoming a freelancer is your ideal choice.
- Having a freelance visa comes with affordability, as you can offer your services at much lower prices. You don’t need office space, and the setup costs are much lower.
- Possessing a freelance visa and license in UAE enables you to work as an independent contractor for companies.
- A freelance visa allows you to sponsor your family members and live with you in the country.
How to Apply for Freelancer Visa and Permit in UAE
Applying for a freelancer permit and visa is now an easy process that involves only several steps:
Apply for the Freelancer Permit Online
This is the first step to starting your freelance job in UAE. You can apply for the permit through the GoFreelance website. Select the ‘apply’ option, fill out the application form, and submit your documents. Here are the required documents:
- A copy of your passport and visa
- Bank reference letter
- No-Objection Certificate (NOC) from your UAE sponsor
Follow Up on Your Application
After submitting your application, you will receive an email notification when it has been approved. It mainly takes 10-15 days. Then you’ll be required to visit the business center that issues your visa to pay the fees and sign the documents. Afterward, you will receive your permit via email.
Apply for the Freelance Visa
Once you get your permit, you can access a certain service platform, which allows you to use government/corporate services. You can apply for an establishment card and a freelance employment visa through this platform.
Complete UAE Residency Visa Application
Once you apply for the freelance visa, you will receive an entry permit after 5-7 days (valid for 60 days from the date of issue). After getting the entry permit, you must complete the respective residency visa procedures, such as medical tests, to have your UAE residency visa stamped and validated.
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