Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Processing Work Permit in Kuwait


So you are in Kuwait and need to process your residency papers, usually the Company Messenger (Mandoub) is your to go guy, but here is a run down of the whole process just for the sake of knowledge.

Most offices in Kuwait have a mandoub, a representative whose job is to process the ‘official’ paperwork of his company. A mandoub is usually an expatriate Arab. His value depends on his knowledge of the required forms and procedures and his ability to push paperwork through government bureaucracy. To deal with certain ministries the mandoub must be officially registered.

Obtaining Residence
To live in Kuwait, expatriates other than GCC citizens must have an iqama, i.e. a residence permit. A person discovered without a valid iqama is fined and deported.

There are different types of iqama, which are allotted article numbers in the immigration regulations. The three main types are work visas, domestic and dependent visas, all of which require a sponsor. An expatriate may however sponsor his own residence, with or without being permitted to work, provided he has lived in Kuwait for many years and has substantial financial means.

Work Permits, No-objection Certificates & Work Visas
A person in Kuwait on a visit visa is not permitted to take up employment. Work visas are iqamas granted under articles 17 (for public sector employees) and 18 (private sector employees) of the immigration regulations. To obtain residence on a work visa an offer of employment must first be accepted. The Kuwaiti sponsoring employer then applies for a work permit from the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor, for which the sponsor needs a copy of the employee’s passport showing full personal details, and any other Kuwait entry visas. A private sector sponsoring employer must then obtain a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the General Administration of Criminal Investigation at the Ministry of the Interior which he does by submitting the employee’s personal details.

If the employee is living in a country that has a Kuwaiti Embassy the employer will send him a copy of the work permit, which the employee will take, with a medical certificate, to the Kuwaiti Embassy for endorsement. The Kuwaiti Embassy will have received a copy of the work permit through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Those sponsored by private sector companies will require their NOCs and a copy of the employer’s authorized signatory as registered for business purposes. A good conduct certificate, which is obtained from the police in the last place of residence, may be required for some nationalities. Applicants are also required to provide a medical certificate stating that their general state of health is good and that they are free of specific epidemic diseases. The Embassy will then provide an entry visa for Kuwait on submission of the application form.

If the employee is living in a country that has no Kuwaiti Embassy then the sponsor will submit the work permit and NOC to the Ministry of the Interior to obtain the entry visa. If an employee is on a visit visa to Kuwait when he accepts employment, then, once the work permit and NOC are ready, he must leave Kuwait and return on the entry visa the sponsor obtains for him. This can be a short round trip to Bahrain by air for the day.

Once he has entered Kuwait on the entry visa, the employee is required to undergo medical tests and obtain a fingerprint certificate before he can process his residence visa.

Medical Tests
The medical tests are taken at the Ports & Borders Health Division, Gamal Abdul Nasser Street, in Shuwaikh, just west of KISR but before the Chest Hospital is reached. Requirements are passport, copy of NOC, a single photograph and a KD10 revenue stamp. Revenue stamps are available from post offices, or from private traders outside the test area who charge a small premium over the nominal value of the stamp.

To take the tests, a pink card must be obtained from a reception window. There is no system of appointments and most people must queue for the various procedures. These include blood tests for serious infectious diseases, such as AIDS, and a chest x-ray. A meningitis vaccination is also given. It takes about a week for the results, which are given in the form of a certificate from the Ministry of Public

Health, to come through. Persons found to be infected with epidemic diseases are deported.

Personal head-and-shoulder type photographs are needed in Kuwait on innumerable occasions. Passport-size photographs are usually acceptable, but the circumstances in which photographs will be needed are not entirely predictable and it is best to stock-up before beginning immigration procedures. The regulation sizes for official purposes are:

Passport-Size 4.0x5.0cm (maximum)
3.5 x 4.5cm (minimum)
Civil ID Card 3.0 x 4.0cm
Driving Licence 2.0 x 3.0cm

For a civil ID card the overall length of the face must be within a range of 2.2 to 2.5cm, while for a driving license the overall length of the face must be within a range of 2 to 2.25cm. The photograph for a civil ID card must show the face without spectacles, but if a person habitually wears spectacles then the photographs for a driving license must show them being worn.

Expatriates employed in restaurants, hotels, hospitals and food processing are required to go for health check up every year and obtain the certificate. Also people from the following countries will require annual check-ups: Somalia, Thailand, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Eritrea, Senegal, Kenya, Chad, South Africa, Ghana, Tanzania, Mauritania, Benin, Niger, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Gambia, Mauritius, Bhutan, Zaire, Guinea, Togo, Mali, Seychelles, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Malawi, Malta, Guinea-Bissau, Fijji, Cuba, Haiti, Zambia, Angola, Congo and Namobia.

Health Insurance Scheme
From April 10, 2000 Ministry of Health has imposed health insurance on expatriates. No new residence is stamped or old renewed unless the expatriates have paid the state health insurance premiums, KD 50 for the head of the family, KD 40 for the wife and KD 30 for every child below the age of 18. The duration of expatriates’ residence is linked directly to the period covered by health insurance. One year health insurance paid entitles only one year residence permit.

Though Kuwaiti nationals are exempted from the scheme, foreign women married to Kuwaitis and children of Kuwaiti women married to foreigners are required to pay KD 5 insurance premium.
The law stipulates that the employers pay the premiums for their employees.

Health Insurance Validity
Expatriates who transfer from one sponsor to another will not have to pay insurance again for the period covered earlier.

Health Insurance Cards
The Ministry of Health started issuing Health Cards to expatriates from July 2003 at the following centers:

  • Capital Governorate - Ministry of Health Administration Complex in Sabah Health Zone
  • Hawally Governorate - opposite Mubarak Al-Kabir Hospital
  • Farwaniya Governorate - near Khaitan Clinic
  • Ahmadi Governorate - near Fahaheel Clinic
  • Jahra Governorate - near Naeem Clinic
  • Also at various immigration offices in each of the governorates the centers are established to issue Health Cards.

Expatriates are required to submit two passport size photographs, their ID Card and KD1 fee to register and obtain the card. These electro-magnetic health cards will take a few minutes to issue and will provide data on bearers medical history.

Fingerprinting & Security Clearance
There are four fingerprint departments where expatriates can have their fingerprints registered and obtain security clearance. These are located in Khaled Ibn Al Waleed Street, Sharq, near the toy shops (for persons living in the City governorate), Al-Ghazali Street, Farwaniya (for persons living in Hawalli and Farwaniya governorates), Ahmadi and Jahra.

To have fingerprints registered, an employee’s passport, copy of the passport, four photographs and a letter from the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor are required. An application form must be completed in Arabic and there are always freelance typists around who will do so for a small fee.

It takes about a week for the finger-prints to be processed and the security clearance certificate to be issued by the Criminal Evidence Department of the Ministry of the Interior. The certificate is picked up from the same place.
Application for Residence

The actual application for an iqama is made at the Immigration and Passport Department of the Ministry of the Interior in Shuwaikh (the jawazaat or ‘passport office’), just off the Airport Road near the Q8 compound between the 3rd and 4th Ring Roads. First time applicants for residence must bring along the following documents in the form of both originals and photocopies:

  • declaration on the prescribed form completed and signed by the sponsor
  • passport
  • work permit
  • NOC
  • medical certificate
  • security clearance (fingerprint) certificate

Four passport size photographs are also required. A maximum of five years residence can be granted. The fee is KD10 per year of residence, with an additional KD2 in the first year. If the sponsor is a government organization then, by law, the employee must bear the cost. If the sponsor is a private company the cost is a matter of negotiation between the sponsor and the employee.

Application for Residence
The actual application for an iqama is made a the Immigration and passport Department of the ministry of the Interior in Shuwaikh (the Jawazaat or passport office) just off the Airport road near the Q8 compound between the 3rd and 4th Ring Roads. First time applicants for residence must submit the following documents in the form of both originals and photocopies:
*declaration on the prescribed *work permit * NOC *passport * security clearance(fingerprint)certificate
Four passport size photography are also required. A maximum of five years residence may be granted. The fee is KD 10 per year. If the sponsor is a government organization then, by law, the employee must bear the cost. If the sponsor is a private company the cost is a matter of negotiation between the sponsors and the employee.

Renewing Residence
After the initial residence has expired it can be renewed, provided the expatriate intends to continue under the same sponsor. Renewal is a fairly simple matter. Applications are made at the jawazaat in Shuwaikh and the process should be started a month before the expiry of the current residence.

Medical tests are not required on renewal. However the employee’s work permit must first be renewed with the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor. The application for renewal must be supported by:

  • the employee’s passport and a copy of it,
  • the renewed work permit, and
  • a copy of the sponsor’s signature as required for business purposes.

Normally the sponsor or his official ‘mandoub’ will attend at the jawazaat to renew the employee’s iqama. Where the employee does so himself, he must have a letter from his sponsor authorizing him to do so.

Once he has obtained his own residency, a male employee may sponsor his wife and children to live with him in Kuwait. Permission to sponsor wife and children is granted only to those who meet the minimum salary condition.

A working wife cannot sponsor her husband as a dependent. Sons over 21 years cannot be sponsored as dependents, though adult daughters and parents may. Dependent family members may not work without transferring to a work visa under Kuwaiti sponsorship. This transfer is now allowed after one year. Earlier it was three years.

An entry visa for a dependent is obtained from the jawazaat (Passport Office) in Shuwaikh. An application form must be typed in Arabic and bilingual typists are available for a charge of 500 fils. The following supporting documents are required:

  • sponsor’s salary certificate
  • copy of the sponsor’s civil ID
  • copy of the dependent’s passport
  • authenticated marriage certificate or child’s birth certificate

The marriage certificate and child’s birth certificate must be authenticated by the sponsor’s embassy and certified by the Kuwait Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Once they have entered the country the formalities for a dependent’s iqama (art 22) are similar to those for a work visa. The dependent must be medically tested and fingerprinted. The photographs and documents required are the same as shown on page 39. The sponsor’s declaration is an undertaking by the family supporter that he will maintain the dependent.

The residence fees for each dependent (wife or child) are KD100 in the first year and KD10 a year thereafter. However the fee for a parent is KD200 a year. These charges apply to all expatriate sponsors whether they are working in the public or private sectors.

New Born Baby
When a baby is born to expatriates in Kuwait, the parents must obtain a dependent’s iqama for the child. There is no minimum salary requirement and the father of child born in Kuwait can sponsor his infant’s residence irrespective of his salary level.

But first the parents must obtain a birth certificate for the child. The hospital where the child was born will provide a notification of the birth. This must be taken to the registry of births in the governorate in which the birth took place to obtain the official birth certificate. The hospital will provide the address. The additional documents required to obtain the birth certificate include: application form duly completed, photocopies of parents’ passport and civil IDs, and authenticated marriage contract. The birth certificate is usually ready to be picked up at the registry after about a week. The fee is KD10.

When the notification is being submitted at the registry, the parents will be asked to write down the proposed first name of the child. For expatriates who do not speak Arabic the name will be written phonetically in Arabic.

To obtain residence the baby’s name must first be added to the parent’s passport or a separate passport must be obtained for the infant. To obtain a passport for the child, different embassies have different rules, but most non-Arabic embassies require a certified translation of the child’s birth certificate while some require the birth certificate to be authenticated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kuwait.

Once a passport has been procured or the child has been added to one of its parent’s passport, the procedures for obtaining the child’s residence are the same as for any dependent. An infant born in Kuwait however is not required to undergo medical tests and fingerprinting. The documents required include the originals and copies of the father’s passport, the civil IDs of both parents, marriage certificate, work permit and letter of employment indicating salary. The application for the infant’s residence must be made within 60 days of the birth to avoid a fine of KD 200.

Where the father works in the private sector, the administrative fee for the new-born infant is KD100 in the first year for the first and second child, and KD200 in the first year for the third and subsequent children. But if the father works in the public sector, there is no charge in the first year for the first three children, while the charge for each subsequent child is KD100 in the first year. The actual residence fee is KD10 a year.
Parents on domestic servant visas cannot keep their child in Kuwait and must obtain an exit visa for the infant from the Ministry of the Interior, for which the following documents are required: passports and civil IDs of both parent’s, marriage contact translated into Arabic, and the child’s birth certificate. There is no fee for the exit visa but, to avoid a fine of KD 200, formalities must be completed within 60 days of the birth.

Domestic Servant’s Visa
Resident expatriates may sponsor one full-time servant to care for their household. A male expatiates must have his wife must be living with him if the servant is a female. The age limits for maids are 20 to 50 years. Family members may not be sponsored on servant’s visas.
The sponsor is not required to have a minimum salary and, provided both husband and wife are working and the family includes children, expatriate families are usually allowed to bring in a maid. The decision rests with immigration official who take into account the size of the family’s home, its monthly income and whether the family really need a maid.
An entry visa for a servant is obtained from the jawazaat in Shuwaikh. An application form must be typed in Arabic and bilingual typists are available for a charge of 500 fils. The following supporting documents are needed:
· Salary certificates of sponsor and his wife
· Copy of house rental agreement
· Copy of sponsor’s and wife’s passport
· Proof of ages of children (eg, copy of local birth certificates or passport)
· Copy of the sponsor’s and wife’s civil ID
· Copy of the servant’s passport plus eight passport sized photography
· Copy of the work contract for the servant
To travel to Kuwait, a servant may need to undergo certain formalities in his or her home country. These can be ascertained from the appropriate embassy.
Once he or she has entered the country the formalities fop a servant’s resident visa are photographs and documents needed are the same as for a work visa except for the work permit. The residence fee is KD 10 a year but there is also a charge of KD 200 in the first year.
There are many agencies in Kuwait which specialize in obtain domestic servants for Kuwaitis and expatriates. Some are reliable. A few have unsavory reputations.

If an expatriate’s passport expires before his residence visa runs out then his iqama can be transferred to the new passport.

When an expatriate applies to his Embassy for a new passport, his old passport will probably be canceled. He should make sure that the pages containing his residence visa are not stamped ‘canceled’, otherwise he may find that he has to apply for a new residence rather than being allowed to transfer his residence from his old to his new passport.

Once he has obtained his new passport, an expatriate should take it along with the old passport to the jawazaat in Shuwaikh within two months of the date of issue of the new passport, where a typed application is presented. The required supporting documents are:

  • copies of all documents used to obtain the original residence
  • letter from sponsor
  • old passport

Four photographs are also required. Provided everything is in order the iqama may be stamped in the new passport there and then.
Where the validity of his passport has been extended and his residence is still valid the expatriate need do nothing.

Passport Lost
If in Kuwait - Report to the Shuwaikh Immigration Department within three days for completion of necessary procedures before approaching the respective embassy for issuance of a new passport.

  • If out of Kuwait - Expatriates residing in Kuwait lose their passports while on holidays abroad and are issued a new document by their respective embassies, must notify the Kuwaiti embassy or the consulate in that country before getting a permit to enter Kuwait.

An expatriate can usually transfer his residence to a new sponsor provided his current sponsor is agreeable. For government employees, domestic servants and dependents, there are few restrictions on transfers between sponsors in the same sector.

However the rules governing the right to transfer to a new sponsor in the private sector are complex. Transfers are usually restricted to the ‘same sector’. For example, a teacher may normally only transfer to a new job as a teacher and may not transfer to a sponsor in industry. Domestic workers can transfer to the private farming sector under the same sponsor after one year’s residence in Kuwait. However. domestic workers desiring to change their ‘20 residence’ to ‘18 residence’ should cancel their residence, leave the country and return on a new work permit. But a person on a domestic servant’s visa may not transfer to an 18-visa until five years have elapsed since he or she obtained residence. And a person on a ‘project’ visa, i.e. someone who was hired by a private sector firm for a particular government project, may not normally transfer to private sector after the project is completed but could transfer to another government sponsor.

According to the transfer rules which were introduced in April 2001, expatriates working in the private sector are permitted to transfer residence to another sponsor after one year with their current sponsor and his consent. The transfer fee, payable to the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor (MSA&L), is KD10 plus KD2 for the new work permit. This fee is additional to the KD10 per year payable to the Ministry of the Interior for the new iqama. An employee of a liquidated company, or of a company that has merged with another, may also transfer without paying this fee, and no matter how short a time he has been with his current employer.

But before he can change his sponsor a resident expatriate must obtain a ‘letter of release’ from his current sponsor. This letter is used by the new sponsor to obtain a new work permit for the expatriate. Where a current sponsor refuses to provide the ‘letter of release’, the matter can be taken up with the Labor Department in the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor. Where the Department finds that the employer has no valid reason for withholding the release, or finds that the employer has broken terms in the labor contract or has violated the Labor Law, the Department may sanction the transfer irrespective of the current sponsor’s wishes.

Where residence is transferred, the expatriate does not need to leave the country and come back again, nor does he have to be medically tested. Otherwise formalities to obtain the new iqama are similar to those for obtaining residence in the first place. Once these have been completed, the old iqama is canceled and the new iqama stamped in the passport. The fee is KD10 a year and there is no rebate for any unexpired years of the old residence.

An expatriate who is not allowed to transfer his residence under the regulations may instead, if he wishes to change sponsor, resign his job, leave Kuwait and return on a fresh work permit. He or she does not need to return to his/her own country but can go to any other neighboring country in the region.

Transfer Procedures
But even if an expatriate is allowed to change his sponsor under the rules he must, in all cases, even if his contract has expired, have the consent of his current sponsor. This consent is evidenced by the sponsor’s signature on a letter of release In addition, to effect the transfer, a copy of the current sponsor’s commercial license is required.

Formalities to obtain the new iqama are similar to those for neither obtaining residence in the first place, though a medical test in nor necessary. The fee for the new work permit is KD 2, and the iqama costs the usual KD 10 a year though there is no rebate for any unexpired years of the old residence. In some cases a transfer fee, payable to the MSA&L, of KD 10 is charged.

Other Residence Visas
Besides work, dependent and domestic iqamas, expatriates may obtain other kids of residence, such as a student residence, or a three-month residence for medical treatment.
Temporary Residence

Expatriate may be granted temporary residence under article 14 in special cases where they do not need or cannot get ordinary residence. This allows for a stay for up to a year, Formerly only given to visitors with personal emergencies, such as illness, Western businessmen seem to obtain temporary residence without difficulty. Recently the Immigration Department has been granting two or three-month temporary residence to the immigration relatives (Father, Mother, Sister, but not Brothers) of residents, whose visit visa have expired.

Temporary residence may also be given to expatriates who have resigned but who need to remain in Kuwait for some time in order to settle their financial affairs or a court case.

The cost is KD 10 A temporary residence is canceled if the holder leaves the country.

Expatriates who have spent long years in Kuwait may sponsor themselves under article 24 of the regulations and obtain a residence for two to five years, provided they can support themselves financially and can produce a certificate of good conduct. This form of residence can be renewed upon expiry. Self-sponsored expatriates may sponsor their wives and children and are entitled to run their own business.

Exit Permits
Expatriate employees of ministries and some other government institutions must obtain exit permits before they can leave Kuwait. Other expatriate do not require exit visas.

Absence Abroad
A residence visa is canceled if the holder is absent aboard for a continuous period of six months. The only exceptions are for those who:
· Are studying aboard

· Are receiving necessary treatment aboard, or

· Are required by virtue of their work to be aboard,

Provided permission in all three cases is obtained before leaving Kuwait.

For a student studying overseas, application for permission is made to the immigration office in the applicant’s residential area. An official letter from the child’s college stating that he or she is studying there, authenticated by the Kuwait embassy in the for country and attested by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kuwait is required. A typist outside the immigration office will type a letter of application in Arabic, which must state the reasons for the application, for 500fils. Other documents needed include copies of passport and civil ID plus four passport-sized photographs. The permission is given in the form of letter.

This letter must be shown to the immigration officer both on departure from Kuwait and on return. The permission is valid for the term of the holder’s residence. It can be used for several entries and exits, and does not need to be renewed until residence is renewed.

Once an expatriate has obtained his residence then he must obtain a civil identity (ID) card (bitaqa-almadaniyah), no matter what type of residence he is on. Civil ID cards are issued by PACI, the public Authority for civil information. After his first card has been issued, the holder’s civil ID number remains the same even if he changes his sponsors or leave Kuwait and comes back several years later on a different residence visa.

The civil ID card shows the holder’s civil number, full name, date of birth ( which is also included in the algorithm for the ID number) local address, blood group, sponsor’s name, type of visa, etc, and date of expiry of the card. Wherever the card expires or an expatriate change sponsor, renews his residence or changes his address, his civil ID card must be amended accordingly. PACI has several offices, each with different functions.

Wherever applying for the first time or renewing or replacing civil ID card, four photographs, showing the face without spectacles, are always required for those over 11 years of age. Photographs are not required for elderly Kuwaiti females.

Registration Procedures
To register for a civil ID for the first time, the documents required are:
· Passport
· Copy of passport pages showing personal details and residence stamp
· Security clearance (Fingerprinting) from those over 16 years
· Original birth certificate if born in Kuwait
· Blood group certificate those over 5 years
· Proof of house address (eg, rental agreement and rent receipts)
· Declaration signed by sponsors
For a first time domestic servant’s civil ID all the above documents, except the first, are needed. For the first civil ID for the baby born in Kuwait, just a copy of the baby’s birth certificate, and a copy of the sponsors passport(showing personal details, residence stamp and the addition of the baby) or the baby’s own passport (showing personal details and residence stamp) are required.
When changing or renewing a civil ID, an expatriate no matter what type of visa he is on, only needs to submit a copy of his passport (showing personal details and the residence stamp) and his sponsors declaration. To have an amended card issued following a change of address, the current card plus proof of the new address (eg, rental agreement) must be submitted. To replace lost card, a photocopy of the lost card and the expatriate’s passport is required.
First time applicants on a work or dependent’s visa must go in person to the PACI office in Farwaniyah, as must all those who wish to replace a lost card. Those on a work or dependent’s visa who are renewing or changing their civil IDs, and first time applicants for a document’s servant’s civil ID, and applicants for the first civil ID of a baby born in Kuwait, can buy the application form and special envelopes from ”Express-Envelope” machines located in Coop supermarkets (250fils), follow the instructions and submit their applications in these special machines.

Charges, Time Limits & Penalties
The charge for civil ID card is KD 2 when it is first issued and each time it is renewed. The charge is paid when the card is collected, there is a fee of KD 10 to replace a lost card.
An expatriate must apply for a civil ID card within 30 days of getting his residency, and must renew his card within 30days of getting his residency, and in Kuwait, the time limit for first registration is 60 days from the date of birth. In all cases the irrespective of the length of the delay, though in practice PACI only levy a one-off fine of KD 20.

Collection of Civil ID Card
For Online inquiry go to PACI
It takes about 10 days for a civil ID card to be processed.
Expatriates can ascertain the status of cards under process through PACI’s computerized telephone answering system by calling 889988 and keying in their civil ID number (for renewals) or the serial number on the outside of the envelope in which the application was submitted.
The civil ID card can only be picked up in person at the PACI office in South of Surrah (sixth ring road) beside ministry of electricity and water from an electronic dispensing machine. The actual machine to be used is ascertained by dialing the above telephone numbers. Two dinars plus the old civil ID card (if held) must be fed into the machine to obtain the new card.

Passport & other Documents
Many sponsors (including ministries) insist on holding their employees passport, even after residence formalities have been completed. Expatriates resent this. Though Kuwaiti Law is silent on this matter, in August 1997 a court ordered a company to return a passport to a former employee on the grounds that a passport belongs to the holders.
An expatriate should note that a passport is the property of the issuing government and that the holder is under a duty not to allow it to pass into the possession of an unauthorized person, and so allowing his sponsor to hold his passport indefinitely may be contrary to the law of his own country. And an expatriate whose passport is held by his sponsor may not be able to travel immediately in an emergency should his sponsor be out of the country or otherwise understandable. A majority of expatriate are laborers living in camps, where important documents can be easily lost or traded. In addition as exit visas for fiduciary bonds are relatively unknown in Kuwait, there is always the risk that an expatriate who controls valuable assets may abscond from the country.
The best tactic for an expatriate whose sponsor refuses to return his passport is to seek advice from his embassy, and insist that the advice be given in writing. The expatriate could also write to the issuing authority in his own country asking for ‘permission ‘ to allow his employer to hold his passport indefinitely.
The Human Rights Committee at the National assembly claims a special interest in ensuring that employers return their employees passports after the completion of immigration formalities.



Anonymous said...

Hi Stumbled on blog while looking for homeschooling info, I'm a single mum and I would like to enrol my daughter in one of the private schools, I was told I cant apply for dependant residency for my daughter even if I have a visa 18 I cant seem to find any information on this apparently only men can apply, I would appreciate any information thanks

Anonymous said...

Child’s residence
The residence of my child is on the father’s sponsorship, I would like to know if there is a chance that this sponsorship can be transferred to the mother, due to the fact that work station of the father is being changed to another country and the mother is working here in Kuwait with a monthly salary of KD300/-.

Name withheld

Answer: No, it is not possible. According to the law only the father can sponsor his children.
The only exceptions are if the woman is divorced or is a widow.

The Arab Times invites questions on all aspects of Kuwaiti law. If you face a problem, or need specific advice on any legal matter, from commercial and investment law to divorce and labour, send questions to the Managing Editor, Arab Times, P.O. Box 2270, 13023 Safat, Kuwait, or Fax to 4818267.

Answer: No, you can’t sponsor your daughter. As soon as your husband’s residence is cancelled, so will be that of your daughter. Women can’t sponsor their children unless they are widows or divorcees. At the most, if your daughter is studying you can get permission from the Immigration Dept for her to complete the school year.

The Arab Times invites questions on all aspects of Kuwaiti law. If you face a problem, or need specific advice on any legal matter, from commercial and investment law to divorce and labour, send questions to the Managing Editor, Arab Times, P.O. Box 2270, 13023 Safat, Kuwait, or Fax to 4818267.


Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous,

Could you give me more details on your case?

1- Are you divorced/Widowed?

2- Is your ex in Kuwait or outside Kuwait?

3- How old is your daughter? Which school are you trying to enlist her in?

Thank you,


Amal said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amal said...


I came across your blog while I was searching for Job/Volunteer opportunities in Kuwait.

I'm a Canadian citizen who grew up in Kuwait and left right after elementary school. I still have my Iqama and return to Kuwait every few months to renew it (My father lives and works there). I'm in my 3rd year of university majoring in Human Rights and Law.

I'm going to be in Kuwait next Summer (May '09-August '09) and I was wondering if you can guide me to where I should start. Can a 20 year old find a job in Kuwait (my cousins tell me it's hard)? If not, volunteering is also something I'd like to have on my CV.

I came across the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and how they offer volunteer opportunities but unfortunately (according to the website) it's only for graduate level students.

Please contact me back with any information you can provide. Thank you so much in advance.

geovani said...

The three main types are work visas, domestic and dependent visas, all of which require a sponsor. An expatriate may however sponsor his own residence, with or without being permitted to work, provided he has lived in Kuwait for many years and has substantial financial means.