Deportation from the UAE

04 May, 2020
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Brett Westernoff

Legal Advisor

In the UAE, there are two types of deportation orders that can be imposed on residents and tourists, judicial and administrative deportation. In brief, legal deportation is directly enforced by court order, and administrative deportation is enforced by the Federal Identity and Citizenship Authority.

JUDICIAL DEPORTATION

Judicial or legal deportation, as it’s called, is the result of a foreigner being convicted of a crime in the UAE. Crimes that predominately carry automatic legal deportation orders are crimes of sexual assault, violence, and drug dealing. In these cases, the foreigner will be convicted of a felony by custodial punishment, and a court order will be issued for legal deportation. This is directly referenced in Article 121 of Law No. 3 of 1987 on Criminal Penal Code, as amended by Federal Law No. 34 of 2005, as amended by Federal Decree-Law No. 7 of 2016, provides that a foreigner who is sentenced for a felony by a custodial punishment for crimes against honour such as sexual assault shall be deported out of the UAE. In cases of misdemeanours, the court may order the foreigner to be deported from the UAE in lieu of sentencing, or that the deportation act as an alternative penalty to the custodial punishment.

ADMINISTRATIVE DEPORTATION

The Federal Identity and Citizenship Authority are responsible for imposing administrative deportation orders against foreigners. Foreigners who are at risk of receiving administrative deportation orders are those who pose a threat to the UAE’s public interest, public security, public morals, public health, or if the foreigner does not have the means to support themselves whilst inside the UAE. These administrative deportation orders extend to the foreigner's family members who are dependents and rely on the foreigner financial support and living accommodation. However, unlike the legal deportation order, administrative deportation orders can be removed by the foreigner making and applying to the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners’ Affairs in the associated emirate.

GRACE PERIODS

Grace periods only apply to foreigners who have been issued deportation orders and still have interests in the UAE that need to be settled prior to deportation. In such circumstances, once the foreigner has paid bail, they shall be granted a grace period set by the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship and shall not exceed a period of three months.

REMOVING DEPORTATION 

All foreigners who have been deported from the UAE cannot return unless they obtain special permission from the Director-General of the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship. This is outlined in Article 28 of Law No. 6 of 1973 on Entry and Residence of Foreigners. Deportees must submit an application to the Naturalization and Residency Administration requesting to obtain a special permit to re-enter the UAE. The application must include the reason for deportation, all information regarding the deportees’ prior residency visas, and all supporting documentation and justifications for re-entry into the UAE.

All foreigners who are still inside the UAE and have been issued a deportation order can appeal to the Public Prosecution to lift and cancel the deportation order. The appeal must include the reason for deportation, and supporting documentation and justifications for lifting and cancelling the deportation order. The appeal application can be made online via the Public Prosecution website, and the application will be sent to a special committee for review.

TRAVEL BANS REGISTERED ON BLACKLIST 

The UAE implemented Executive Regulation Law No. 6 of 1973 on Entry and Residence of Foreigners, outlining the rules regarding the Blacklist. According to this regulation, the UAE Blacklist is a comprehensive database of persons who are prohibited from entering or leaving the UAE. In such cases, the Federal Department of Criminal Police inside the Ministry of Interior is in charge of adding and removing names from the Blacklist.

Persons who are Blacklisted from entering the UAE have the following claims registered against their names:

  • All persons who have a criminal record resulting in deportation;
  • All persons who have received a deportation order authorized by the Ministry of Interior;
  • All persons whose activities are listed on the International Criminal Cooperation Department database;
  • All persons who have AIDS, Tuberculosis or any other disease deemed dangerous to public health by the Ministry of Health; and
  • All persons who have received a deportation order from other GCC countries for criminal activities.

Persons who are Blacklisted from leaving the UAE, have the following claims registered against their names:

  • All persons who have active cases registered with the Public Prosecution;
  • All persons who have active court cases will be issued a Blacklist order to remain until their case has been considered; and
  • All persons who have outstanding government debts.

TRAVEL BANS REGISTERED ON ADMINISTRATIVE LIST

The UAE Administrative List is not as severe as the Blacklist. This database includes all persons who are banned from entering the UAE due to their failure to effectively cancel their residency visas and all persons banned from leaving the UAE because they have absconded from their jobs and have failed to effectively cancel their residency visas with their sponsors. In such cases, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners’ Affairs is in charge of adding and removing names from the Administrative List.

Persons who are on the UAE’s Administrative List, have the following claims registered against their names:

  • All persons who have cancelled their residency visas prior to the completion of their limited-term employment contracts;
  • All persons who have been reported to the police for absconding from employment; and
  • All persons who have been issued an administrative deportation order.

LIFTING NAME FROM BLACKLIST

Persons who have their names registered on the UAE Blacklist and are banned from entering the UAE can only have their name removed in the following scenarios:

  • All persons who have a criminal record resulting in deportation are subject to the rules in Articles 102, 103 and 104 of the Ministerial Resolution No.360 of 1997;
  • All persons who have received a deportation order authorized by the Ministry of Interior are subject to the rules of Article 23 of Law No. 6 of 1973 on Entry and Residence of Foreigners; and
  • All persons whose activities are listed on the International Criminal Cooperation Department database are subject to the above rules and procedures.

Persons who have their names registered on the UAE Blacklist and are banned from leaving the UAE can only have their name removed in the following scenarios:

  • All persons who have active cases registered with the Public Prosecution, can have their names removed from the Blacklist if they obtain a written order from the Public Prosecutor or their representative who has received written notice from the entity which issued the travel ban;
  • All persons who have active court cases will be issued a Blacklist order to remain until their case has been considered, can have their names removed from the Blacklist if they receive a written order from the same court which issued the travel ban; and
  • All persons who have outstanding government debts can have their names removed from the Blacklist if they obtain a written order from the government authority who issued the travel ban, and the written order is approved by the Ministry of Interior or their representative.

LIFTING NAME FROM ADMINISTRATIVE LIST

Persons who have their names registered on the UAE Administrative List may have their bans lifted by the Department of Entry and Residence Permits after one year after their deportation in the following scenarios:

  • All persons who have been placed on the Administrative List because they cancelled their residency visas prior to the completion of their limited-term employment contracts;
  • All persons who have been placed on the Administrative List because they have been reported to the police for absconding from employment can have their names lifted under Article 29 of Foreigner Entry and Residency Law; and
  • All persons who have been placed on the Administrative List can have their names lifted under Ministerial Resolution No. 360 of 1997 for fines reductions.

 

Brett Westernoff

Legal Advisor

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