9 new rules introduced in the UAE in 2023 to know about

Every year, the UAE makes major changes to its laws in order to make life simpler for people. From non-Sharia compliant weddings to required unemployment insurance, here are nine new policies that will be enforced in the UAE in 2023 that you should be aware of:

Tourism tax slashed in Abu Dhabi

The Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and tourist announced a change in government fees in the tourist industry that would take effect on September 1, 2023. The government fee modifications include a drop in the tourist fee charged to guests from 6% to 4%. The municipality fee of Dhs15 per room per night will no longer be charged to guests. Furthermore, the 6% municipality charge and the 4% municipality fee that applies to the hotel’s restaurants will be removed. Officials verified that the municipality charge of 4% of the value of the invoice provided to the client will remain in effect.

New procedures to update your Emirates ID

Do you need to make changes to your visa that will be reflected in your Emirates ID? You can now change all of your data online. This includes a change in name, work, or boss, and also an update to passport information and even a change in nationality. Any changes to home details will result in an inquiry for a new Emirates ID card.

Residents will be able to make changes using the official website or the smart app. You only need your UAE Pass log-in information. You could get your new Emirates ID by attending a customer happiness centre or an approved typing centre.

Travel ban lifting

If you’ve been held with a travel restriction as a consequence of a Dubai court order, there’s a new simple, digital way to get the ban lifted. The scheme, devised by the Dubai Public Prosecution, would allow people to pay online and then have their travel curtailment automatically increased upon court approval. There are three possibilities, which you may learn more about by clicking here.

The new service is part of the government’s ‘Services 360’ policy, which was approved by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council, and aims to promote smart life management solutions while also speeding up processes and relieving pressure.

Involuntary loss of employment  (ILOE) scheme

The Involuntary Loss of Work (ILOE) Scheme, which went into effect on January 1, 2023, is a type of social security that would pay workers for up to three months if they leave their jobs. The system applies to all commercial and public sector employees, and everyone must be enrolled by October 1, 2023 – a date that was extended to give people more time to join up. The incentive payment might amount to up to 60% of the employee’s income.

Removal of grace period for Dubai visit visas

The Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs, and Port Security (ICP) showed to The National in May that visitors will no more be offered a 10-day grace period after their Dubai tourist visas expire. Previously, travellers had 10 days from the date their visa expired to stay in the emirate before being fined for overstaying. This means that the grace period is no longer in effect, and anyone who overstays their Dubai visit visa will be fined Dhs50 per day immediately.

UAE work permit extended from two years to three years

Anyone seeking employment in the UAE needs to apply for a work visa. According to the Federal National Council (FNC), the existing two-year permit for employment will be extended to three years. The proposal, which was announced in May 2023, is expected to lower the expenses present with getting work permits. The UAE’s Ministry of Recruitment and Employment (MOHRE) issues all work permits, though no schedule to be followed was provided.

30 per cent tax removed from alcohol

The 30% tax on all alcohol was eliminated in 2023, with effect on January 1, 2023. African & Eastern and MMI liquor retailers immediately reduced their pricing for customers buying from stores.

Since Sunday, January 1, 2023, alcohol permits have also been made available for free. Residents would just need their Emirates ID, but tourists will need their passport. Previously, the annual alcohol licence fee for all non-Muslims was Dhs270.

Huge updates to marriage laws

Non-Muslim couples can marry in a non-Sharia legal manner under the new Federal Personal Status Law. Non-Muslim couples in Abu Dhabi have been permitted to marry in civil court from February 2022, similar to a register office wedding in the UK or Europe. This became a UAE-wide law on February 1, 2023.

According to the new order, both partners can now petition the court to break the marriage without showing guilt or explaining the need to do so. Divorces may be granted after only one hearing, and there will be no need for the previously needed family guidance treatment or meditation sessions.

If a divorced spouse has children, joint and equal custody will be given until the children reach the age of 18. When there is a custody discord, the court can take further steps and engagement, always keeping the kid or children’s best interests in mind. If witness evidence is required, the testimony of a woman must be equivalent to that of a male.

Non-Muslims can now register wills with their marriage documents, allowing them to leave their property to whoever they want.

New corporate tax law

Businesses in the UAE will be subject to corporate taxes starting in the fiscal year beginning in or after June 2023, with a standard rate of 9% imposed on taxable profits exceeding Dhs375,000. Profits up to this amount will be taxed at 0% to help entrepreneurs and startups.

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