‘Can I return to the UAE after being deported?’

A foreigner who has been forced to leave after overstaying their visa may not return except with special permission

A picture take on September 14, 2017 shows people walking at Dubai's International Airport . / AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE
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Question: I was living in the UAE and overstayed my visa. I was deported to Uganda.

Is it possible for me to travel back to the UAE to look for work and start again? BM, Uganda

In accordance with UAE immigration laws, a person can be deported and issued with a travel ban for overstaying on a visa.

This happens when someone has overstayed for a long period of time, not simply a few days or weeks.

Article 28 of Law No 6 on Entry and Residence of Foreigners states: “A foreigner who has been deported may not return to the country except with special permission from the director general of the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship.”

If this is due to overstaying, as opposed to a criminal reason, it is classed as an administrative reason and a person can appeal to have a travel or entry ban overturned.

One option is to apply through the Ministry of Interior website, or they can appoint a lawyer to submit a petition on your behalf.

There is no set list of requirements, but the person will need to provide a copy of their current passport, explain the circumstances for the ban and why they would like it removed, and demonstrate their good character.

This could be proof of regular employment and a good conduct certificate from the police, confirming they do not have a criminal record in their home country.

The ministry has a committee that reviews petitions to lift bans.

If a ban relates to the emirate of Dubai, an online petition can be made through the Public Prosecution's website.

Q: Is it true than an employee can take leave and still be paid if a family member dies?

I have an employee whose mother has died, but he says he should be paid for the two weeks he was away in his home country for this. FM, Abu Dhabi

Watch: New UAE labour laws come into effect

A: The UAE has a provision in the new labour law that clarifies the entitlement to paid leave in such circumstances.

Article 32 of Federal Decree-Law No. (33) of 2021 states: “The worker shall be entitled to a paid leave in the following cases: a. A bereavement leave of five days, in case of death of the husband or wife and three days in case of death of the mother, father, son, brother, sister, grandson, grandfather or grandmother, starting from the date of death.”

An employer can choose to allow additional time off, either as annual leave or unpaid leave.

Q: We purchased materials from a company last July for an amount of Dh49,000 ($13,342).

The supplier’s standard practice was to deliver the materials with a delivery note and the sales representative would submit all the original invoices at the end of the month.

However, the sales representative had changed and he sent the invoices by email without informing us.

Many months passed and the supplier did not request payment, hence we never noticed that we had not received these invoices.

Now, we have found out that the salesperson had sent us those invoices via email. He has still not submitted the original invoices and we have not made the payment yet.

Can we claim VAT for the last quarter of 2022? IN, Dubai

A: VAT issues can be complex, so I sought a response from Gemma Nye, manager of Go Figure Accountancy in Dubai.

She said: “The VAT can be reclaimed for prior period when the following conditions are met (FTA Law No 8 of 2017 — Article 55). Input tax has to be recovered during the first tax period that conditions have been met. In the event that input tax has not been recovered during that period, then it can be recovered in the following period.”

The conditions to be met are:

  • The company is in receipt of a tax invoice
  • There is an intention to make a payment for the invoice within six months following the agreed date for supply payment
  • As soon as invoices are received, the intention to make payment only arises when internal approval processes applicable to payment are complete

“If input tax isn’t recovered during any of the first two tax periods, then a voluntary disclosure is required, which means amending the returns for prior periods,” Ms Nye said.

Overhaul of UAE visas — in pictures

“A point to note, the supplier must deliver a tax invoice to the customer within 14 days from supply.”

I always recommend that companies employ an accountant experienced in VAT issues to obtain personalised advice. This is invariably money well spent.

Keren Bobker is an independent financial adviser and senior partner with Holborn Assets in Dubai, with more than 30 years’ experience. Contact her at keren@holbornassets.com. Follow her on Twitter at @FinancialUAE

The advice provided in our columns does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only

Updated: February 26, 2023, 5:00 AM