Can my employer cancel my visa without informing me?


Visa Cancellations: Understanding the Process and Your Rights

we understand that visa cancellations and final settlements can be complex and overwhelming processes for both employers and employees in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is essential to follow the correct procedures and abide by the relevant legislation to ensure a smooth transition. In this article, we will provide you with detailed information on visa cancellations and final settlements, covering important aspects such as the employer’s role, required documents, worker notifications, cancellation for individuals outside the UAE, and legal services available to support you throughout the process.

Download the Official Law from Ministry Regarding Termination of Employment

1. Understanding the Employer’s Role in Cancelling a UAE Visa

First and foremost, it is crucial to note that only companies or sponsors have the authority to request visa cancellations and final settlements for their employees. Workers who wish to permanently leave the UAE must approach their companies or sponsors to initiate this process. Therefore, if companies need to cancel their workers’ visa permits, they must adhere to the following steps:

  1. Companies must start by canceling the work permits of their employees. However, it is important to note that canceling a visa is not necessary if a worker intends to change jobs. In such cases, the worker needs to have their work permit canceled by their sponsor or transferred to another company.
  2. Employers are required to apply for UAE visa cancellation at the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA). It is crucial to initiate this process at the same office where the employee obtained their UAE visa initially.
  3. Once the visas are canceled, holders have a grace period of 30 days to leave the country. However, you might be wondering if your employer can cancel your UAE Residence Visa without informing you. Let’s delve into this matter in the following section.
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2. Process for Visa Cancellations: Compliance and Notification

The process for visa cancellations varies depending on whether employees are complying with the terms of their contract. If employees are not absconding, companies are required to cancel their workers’ work contracts before proceeding with visa cancellations. To apply for visa cancellation and final settlement for their employees, authorities mandate that companies follow these steps:

  1. Companies must begin the process by visiting the website of the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE).
  2. Employers need to electronically submit relevant documents through MoHRE’s website.
  3. MoHRE reviews the submitted application and forwards the information to GDRFA.
  4. The GDRFA officially cancels the individual’s visa, and MoHRE permanently cancels the work permit of the employee upon receiving the notification from GDRFA.

Additionally, employers need to ensure that their employees sign an official letter containing the agreements for work contract cancellation. This letter serves as proof that employees have received their salary and settlements after the termination of the contract. The process cannot proceed without employers submitting this requirement to MoHRE.

3. Required Documents for Visa Cancellation and Final Settlement

The UAE government has established certain document requirements that companies or sponsors must fulfill to initiate the visa cancellation process for their workers. Here are the main documents that authorities require:

  1. UAE visa cancellation form, to be filled out by the company or sponsor.
  2. Employee’s original ID card.
  3. Proof of approval from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE).

It is important to note that companies do not need the worker’s passport at the time of visa cancellation. In case the worker is not present, companies must submit computerized images of the worker’s residence visa. Additionally, as mentioned earlier, companies must first complete the process of work permit cancellation.

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Visa cancellations can occur under various circumstances, and it is crucial to understand the process to protect your rights and interests. In the UAE, visa cancellations may be initiated by either the employee or the employer. Let’s explore both scenarios in detail:

1. Employee-Initiated Visa Cancellations

If you find yourself in a situation where you wish to cancel your residence visa in the UAE, it is essential to follow the correct procedures. Here are the key steps involved:

  1. Inform your employer: Begin by notifying your employer about your intention to cancel your visa. This communication should be done in writing, providing them with adequate notice, typically within 30 days.
  2. Visit the relevant authorities: Once you have informed your employer, you will need to visit the appropriate government authorities to complete the necessary paperwork. These authorities may include the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) or the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE), depending on your specific circumstances.
  3. Submit required documents: Prepare the required documents, which usually include your passport, Emirates ID, and a completed visa cancellation form. Additionally, you may need to provide supporting documents, such as a no-objection certificate (NOC) from your employer or proof of new employment, depending on the situation.
  4. Clear any outstanding dues: Ensure that all financial obligations, such as outstanding loans or utility bills, are settled before initiating the visa cancellation process.
  5. Obtain an exit permit: Once your visa cancellation is approved, you will be issued an exit permit, allowing you to leave the country within a specified timeframe.

2. Employer-Initiated Visa Cancellations

In some cases, an employer may need to cancel an employee’s visa due to various reasons, such as termination of employment or business closure. The process for employer-initiated visa cancellations typically involves the following steps:

  1. Inform the employee: The employer should formally communicate the decision to cancel the employee’s visa. It is crucial to provide the employee with reasonable notice and to follow any specific guidelines outlined in the employment contract or labor laws.
  2. Submit necessary documents: The employer must gather and submit the required documents to the appropriate government authorities, such as the GDRFA or MOHRE. These documents may include the employee’s passport, Emirates ID, a completed visa cancellation form, and relevant termination or business closure documentation.
  3. Settle financial obligations: The employer must ensure that any pending salary payments, end-of-service benefits, or other financial dues are settled in accordance with the UAE labor laws.
  4. Assist with employee’s departure: It is the employer’s responsibility to facilitate the employee’s smooth departure from the UAE, including providing an exit permit and assisting with travel arrangements if necessary.
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Protecting Your Rights during Visa Cancellations

During the visa cancellation process, it is crucial to understand and safeguard your rights. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Notice period: Both employees and employers should adhere to the agreed-upon notice period or the minimum notice period required by labor laws.
  2. End-of-service benefits: Employees whose visas are canceled are entitled to receive end-of-service benefits, including gratuity, in accordance with the UAE labor laws.
  3. Employment contracts: Employers should review and ensure compliance with the terms and conditions outlined in the employment contract, including provisions related to visa cancellations.
  4. Legal assistance: If you encounter any difficulties or have concerns during the visa cancellation process, seeking legal advice from qualified professionals can help protect your rights and interests.


Navigating the visa cancellation process in the UAE requires a comprehensive understanding of the procedures involved, whether you are an employee or an employer. By following the correct steps, adhering to legal requirements, and protecting your rights, you can ensure a smoother transition during this process.



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