The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA) has said that all those whose visas expired before March 1 will be granted a three-month grace period to exit the country without having to pay any fines associated with their overstay.
The grace period for these visa violators commenced on August 8 and ends on November 17.
The decision was conveyed by state news agency WAM late on Sunday evening, who attributed the decision to Major General Saeed Rakan Al Rashidi, Director General of Foreigners Affairs and Ports at the ICA.
The decision applies to all violators of the residency laws and those who leave within the stipulated period will not only have any residency fines waived, but will also not be banned from reentering the country in the future.
Those who are departing from Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Ras al-Khaimah airports must arrive at the airport six hours before their flight.
Those leaving the country through Dubai Airport, must visit the deportation center at the Civil Aviation Security Police near Terminal 2, 48 hours before their flight.
The ICA has said that the latest decision is among the initiatives of the UAE taken in light of the “exceptional circumstances” due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
For further details, the ICA has said that its operational room can be contacted on 800 453 daily from 8am-10pm, except holidays.
Those whose visas have expired after March 1 have one month starting from August 11 to leave the country or to change the status on their visa to avoid any fines.
In July, the UAE cabinet issued a directive to cancel a previous decision that automatically extended the validity of residency visas for expatriates – inside or outside the country – which expired after March 1, 2020 until year-end.