GENERAL RULES CONCERNING THE RESIDENCE PERMIT

GENERAL RULES CONCERNING THE RESIDENCE PERMIT

All those working in Kuwait with work permits issued from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor must have residence permits in accordance with this law.

All foreigners entering Kuwait from the official ports should have valid legal passports issued by the appropriate authorities in their countries, and they should have an entry visa to present it, with their passports, to the immigration officer. If the foreigner entering Kuwait does not hold a passport, he faces imprisonment up to six months, or both penalties.

Residence law states that the foreigner who gets a child through legal marriage must register him within sixty days from birth, and process a residence permit for him through a certain procedure, and then apply for an identification card (ID card) for him
A child born in Kuwait must be registered as a dependent in his father’s or mother’s file. The papers required to register the child and get him a residence permit are as follows:
The birth certificate of the child, copy of ID of parents, copies of passports of father and mother, marriage certificate (authenticated from appropriate authorities if not issued in Kuwait), passport of the sponsoring parent with the child’s name added to it presented to immigration.

Foreigners are required to present their identification cards or passports if he asked by authorities to do so, and they should go to Immigration premises when asked to do so.

Foreigners are required to inform Police Authorities or Immigration about loss or damage of their passports within three days of loss or damage.
The foreigner in Kuwait must inform local authorities if he changes his address.

The foreigner requesting a residence permit must process his papers in the immigration department within a period of two months from entry date. The immigration department issue residence permits to temporary visitors, domestic helpers, and employees of all kinds. Visitors who come to Kuwait on a visit or commercial visa are allowed to stay up to three months only, unless renewed with approval of Minister of Interior for a maximum of one year. Once the temporary residence expires they must leave the country.

Each type of residence permit application must have certain documents attached to it, depending on whether the residence permit is for work in the private sector, or for domestic work (house helpers janitors etc.) or for a dependent of a resident foreigner, or work in the government and its institutions. And this residence permit is given for a maximum of five years (work permits are for a maximum period of three years renewable) renewable one month at least before expiry date.
For the first time one requires the following documents: copy of passport, original copy of entry visa, original copy of work permit, health certificate which is issued by Ministry of Public Health after medical tests, health insurance for which a fee is paid, six photos, copy of authorized signature of sponsor with the original to be presented to the officer for matching, a letter from the sponsor to allow the worker or employee to process his residence permit in case no mandoob works for the employer.

If the visitor to Kuwait overstays his visit without extension of visa, he is liable to a penalty of ten KD per day, or imprisonment of maximum three months. If he extends his visa to visit to its maximum allowed duration and still overstays, then the penalty for each day of illegal stay will be two KD to a maximum of between six hundred and one thousand KD.
A foreigner who has a valid residence permit can stay out of Kuwait for a maximum of six months otherwise he will not be allowed to re-enter Kuwait unless he has a permission from the Minister of Interior to stay for more than six months abroad.

Any foreigner who overstays the duration of his residence permit without renewal is liable to a fine of two KD per day to a maximum of 600 to 1000 KD. Article twelve or the law prohibits anybody from sheltering any foreigner with no residence permit, or employing him, or employing those sponsored by others.

If the worker leaves Kuwait without informing his sponsor, and his residence permit expires while he is out of Kuwait, then he can come back after the lapse of two years from the date of expiry of residence permit and the cancellation of his residence permit. His passport must be sent to Kuwait to a friend or family member for the residence permit to be cancelled.

Lately the Ministry of Interior has issued a decree allowing citizens of thirty two countries (West European, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and some others) to enter Kuwait without a visa processed before their arrival in Kuwait. They can get a temporary residence permit of three months upon arrival in Kuwaiti ports or Airport.

Recently the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor has agreed with the Ministry of Interior to transfer commercial visit visas into residence permits based on work permits issued by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor provided the sponsoring company’s file in the ministry allows that. This procedure has been grievously abused by sponsors, which prompted the authorities to reconsider. The process is still on, yet cases are highly scrutinize and restricted to certain professions; and companies which abuse the law are having their files closed in both ministries.

TYPES OF ENTRY VISA

Types of Visas are as follows:-

  1. Visa issued for work in the government or public institutions in accordance with article 17 where a request form the party that offered the foreigner a job or appointed him to a job.
  2. Entry visa for work in the private sector issued in accordance with article 18 which necessitates a work permit processed in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor.
  3. Entry visa issued to domestic helpers in accordance with article 20 from the General Directorate of Immigration upon the request of a Kuwaiti or a foreign resident provided the age of the domestic helper is between 20 and 50 years. The General Director of Immigration has the authority to exempt anybody he deems fit, from that condition (20 to 50 years).
    • A foreign can be given three visas for domestic helpers provided he pays a fee of 200 KD for the first domestic helper, 300 KD for the second and 400 KD for the third (for the first year of their employment), for a foreigner to be given permission to bring domestic helpers he should have good income, a family and a relatively big residence.
  4. Entry visa for the practice of commercial and industrial activities, or a craft issued in accordance with license from the appropriate authorities in Kuwait.
  5. Entry visa for a family member of a bearer of a Kuwaiti residence permit who applies and processes the procedures in the immigration department.
    • Ministry of Interior has given permission for those having salaries of 250 KD indicated on their work permit to bring a dependent to Kuwait and process a residence permit for him (a dependent should be a member of the family) as per Ministerial decree no, 236/2005. This salary must be the one indicated in the work permit issued by Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor. If the employee or worker has another job that generates money for him that money will not be considered by the Immigration Department.
      He should pay one hundred KD fee for the duration of residence permit of the dependent plus ten dinars for each year of the duration. For more than two children the foreign sponsor must pay a fee of two hundred KD for each sponsored child (third, fourth, fifth, etc) plus ten KD for each year of the duration of residence permit. If the sponsored is a mother or father or a sibling the fee for the duration of the residence permit is two hundred KD plus ten KD per year of the duration.
  6. Student entry visa for students accepted in Kuwait education institutes in accordance with a certificate indication their acceptance as students.
  7. Entry visa for patients treated in Kuwaiti hospitals in accordance with a certificate from the Public Health Ministry indicating that the patient is accepted for treatment.
  8. Entry visa for visiting purposes requested by a Kuwaiti national or foreigner living in Kuwait, or issued from Kuwaiti Consulates abroad. The visitor can stay for a month and then extend his visit into a temporary residence permit for two more months (in accordance with article 14 of the executive regulations).
  9. Transit visas are issued by Kuwaiti consulates, or by Kuwaiti entry ports upon the request of persons concerned and are valid for one week, provided the would-be bearer of the transit visas has a visa to the country of his destination.

A sponsor (a company registered in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor)applies for a work permit to be issued for an employee or worker, Certain documents must be attached: a copy of employee’s passport is one of them, once the work permit is issued (if the file of the sponsor allows for that) a copy is given to the sponsor. After two weeks time at most the Interior Ministry issues a work entry visa with which the employee or worker enters Kuwait for work.

  • Medical check up to detect any infectious diseases (if the worker is found with a grave infections diseases he will be quarantined and sent back to his country with the sponsor bearing expenses. If he is found physically fit he will be given certificate denoting her is healthy and fit.
  • Fingerprinting.
  • Registering in the health insurance system.
    After these procedures which may take ample time, the residence permit sticker
    will be affixed to the passport (fees are required to pay for certain procedures).

DEPORTING THE FOREIGNER

The Interior Minister and the Secretary of the Ministry (Wakil al wazara) can issue an order to depot as persona non grata any foreigner in the following cases:

  1. If there is a court ruling ordering the deportation of the foreigner after serving a prison sentence.
  2. If his presence in the country is detrimental to public order and security.
  3. If he does not have an apparent source of income.

A deported foreigner will have his dependent family deported with him. Ministry of Interior has the right to detain foreigners ordered for deportation for a maximum of one month to complete the procedure of deportation.

Once the deported foreigner leaves the country, he is not allowed back to Kuwait. Only the Interior Minister or Secretary of Interior Ministry can issue amnesty or pardon. If the deported foreigner tries to come back to Kuwait with total disregard to law, he is faced with imprisonment for a maximum of one year when caught.

If the employee or worker leaves his work, or his job is terminated, the Ministry of Interior must be informed. If the worker leaves his work for a week or more without express permission from employer, the employer can report him absent from work. Which means the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor will cancel his work permit and inform the Interior Ministry to cancel his residence permit, once the employee or worker has his residence cancelled the sponsor must return him to his country bearing all expenses.

 

GENERAL RULES CONCERNING THE RESIDENCE PERMIT are indicated by ministerial decree which means they can be changed any time by the Minister of Interior if he deems it necessary. It is advisable for the foreigner to check for the latest rules before starting any procedures.
 
 
 
 

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