Travelling is always exciting and we usually get caught up in having fun that we forget to check on our belongings. Loss or theft of passport is one of the most common incidents and may happen to even the most experienced of travelers. On noticing the document is lost or stolen along with visa we start panicking with no clue of what to do next.
The very first thing on realizing the passport has been lost or stolen would be to head over to the nearest police station and file a report of the lost document. This procedure would protect the individual in case anyone tries to misuse the document posing serious identity thefts and its use in illegal activities. The police would file a lost-passport report which is crucial for the remainder of the procedure. The below simple steps will provide you with a basic guideline in case of being stuck in such a situation.
Inside UAE: What needs to be done if the passport is lost inside the UAE?
1. File a police report closest to where the incident took place:
The usual time frame for issuance of the lost-passport report would be one working day. Documentary requirements would vary depending on the status of individual’s residence visa sponsorship.
a. If on company sponsorship, the individual would need to submit a letter in Arabic printed on the company’s letterhead along with a copy of the company’s trade license and establishment card to the appropriate government offices and police department of the emirate where the residence visa was issued.
b. In case of a minor, the sponsoring parent is required to be present to endorse the report at the police station.
c. While being on a family sponsorship, the individual would need to submit a letter signed by the sponsor (spouse or parent) along with a copy of the sponsor’s passport.
2. Obtaining clearances from the relevant government authorities:
The procedure for lost passport is linked with the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) and Dubai Courts. On receipt of the police report, the individual needs to visit GDRFA, UAE court and Public prosecution where the residency visa was issued for authentication following which the document would be stamped by the three departments. On receiving the three stamps, the individual needs to return back to the police station wherein the original lost-passport certificate would be issued by the authorities in Arabic.
3. Apply for a new Passport:
Based on the formal lost-passport certificate, the individual can apply for a new passport at the embassy/consulate of their origin in the UAE. The processing timeline and documentary requirements in obtaining a new passport would vary depending on the regulations defined by each of the issuing country.
4. Re-endorsement of the residence visa:
On issuance of the new passport, the individual would need to apply for the re-issuance of the residence permit. GDRFA would issue a residence visa with the same validity period as of the old visa if still valid or will issue a new visa in case of expiry while being inside the UAE.
Outside UAE: What do if lost your passport outside UAE?
If the passport is lost abroad, the processing timeline, cost and documentary requirements for obtaining a new passport would vary depending on the issuing country and holiday destination, hence the process would be both time-consuming and costly. However, it is important to get the required documents prior to your exit from the holiday destination to ensure smooth processing of subsequent applications.
To keep the situation less traumatic and expensive, it would be ideal to take a good travel insurance plan that can cover expenses related to accommodation, travel cost and embassy fees during emergencies.
1. File police report to obtain lost certificate:
To avoid misuse, individual should visit the nearest police station to file a police report for the lost or stolen document. Upon receipt of the report, if not issued Arabic or English, officially translate the document into Arabic and English to avoid hassles in obtaining re-entry permit for UAE.
2. Contact the embassy/consulate of origin about the lost passport:
With the official police report individual needs to visit the embassy/consulate of his origin to inform loss of document and initiate process to obtain a new passport. If the document was lost in a country other than the home country, individual can obtain a temporary emergency travel document from the embassy to enable return to home following which apply for a new passport. The documentary requirements, procedure and timeline for issuance of the new document would vary based on the home country regulations.
Additionally, at this stage ensure to authenticate the police report from the Embassy and Ministry of Foreign Affairs from the country where the document was issued. This is one of the requirements by the UAE authorities for issuance of the re-entry permit.
Note: Entry to UAE would not be permitted using a temporary passport, therefore before travelling to UAE always get a new passport issued.
3. Cancellation of current residence permit:
Expat should notify the sponsor as well as the UAE Embassy of the incident as soon as possible to initiate security measures, update the immigration database and proceed with the cancellation of the current residence permit. At this stage you could request UAE Embassy to attest police report as well, which would be required for the issuance of re-entry permit on issuance of new passport.
4. Obtaining re-entry permit:
On receipt of the new passport, individual is required to apply for a re-entry permit to be able to return to the UAE. The request for entry permit is received and processed by the consular section of the UAE embassy in the country where the passport was lost or home country. Once the permit to enter the UAE is received, report the same to the company HR or PRO and advise the airline/travel agency of the new documents. Upon arrival connect with GDRFA for stamping of the residence permit onto the passport to ensure individual’s legal stay in the UAE.
5. Re-endorsement of residence visa:
On entry into UAE an application is submitted to GDRFA to re-endorse the residence visa on the new passport. Some of the documentary requirements for the re-issue of the residence visa are:
1. Copy of the old passport
2. Copy of the new passport
3. Copy of the lost UAE residence visa
4. Copy of the Emirates ID card
5. Passport-sized photo
6. Copy of re-entry permit (for loss of passport outside UAE)
7. Attested Lost/stolen Police report
Can you enter UAE using e-gate while the passport is lost or stolen?
Expats are not allowed to enter UAE on a temporary, except on their permanent one. Entry would be denied if you enter the UAE through any other means including e-gate or using Emirates ID card while the original passport is missing. Even if you manage to enter using a second passport, the re-issuance of the residence inside UAE may not be approved unless all the documents from the holiday destination is produced. It is important for the expats to have both the original new permanent passport as well as the new entry permit from the UAE Embassy for successful entry to the country and successfully get the residence visa endorsed on the new passport.
How can BM Strategies assist?
Given the dynamic nature of the immigration environment, we at BM Strategies guide our clients on the best and most efficient options in developing, implementing, and managing compliant UAE immigration and PRO service programs. Please reach out to us for more information on firstname.lastname@example.org
Our services include:
Employment Residence Visas
Dependent Residence Visas
Emirates Id Cards
Corporate Documents Procurement/Renewal
Expiry Tracking and Renewal
De-registrations and Amendments
GCC Pension Registry Management
Document Procurement and Attestation Services
Benchmarking and Consultations
Strategic Planning and Support
Note: The information provided here are only for the purpose of providing an overview regarding the dependent visa renewal and processes. The immigration regulations are subject to change from time to time from one jurisdiction to another. Hence the information provided hereby should not be considered an opinion or advice from BM Strategies but only a practical guide for general information.
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Posted on 12-Feb-2021.