Which conditions must be met for UAE visa holders to receive tax residency status

A UAE residence visa does not grant the holder automatic tax residency in the country. As of March 1st, 2023, Cabinet Decision No. 85 of 2022 came into effect in the Emirates, establishing rules for receiving tax residency. In order to be issued a Tax Residency Certificate (TRC), an individual must meet one of the following requirements:

  1. Have a physical place of residence in the UAE.
  2. Be physically present in the UAE for a minimum of 183 days out of 12 months.
  3. Be a current holder of a UAE residence visa or a citizen of the UAE or one of the GCC countries, and be physically present in the UAE for a minimum of 90 days out of 12 months, provided a permanent place of residence or work, or a private business has been established. The individual does not have to be the owner of the property where they live.

The TRC allows the holder to avoid double taxation on any income received in the UAE. Since there is no personal income tax in the Emirates, residents are not required to make any payments on income earned.

In order to receive the TRC, several documents will need to be submitted to the Federal Tax Authority (FTA), and a fee will need to be paid. This can be done online, directly on the agency’s website. The following documents must be submitted:

  • Passport with valid visa;
  • Emirates ID;
  • Certified copy of rental agreement;
  • Proof of income;
  • Bank statements for the previous six months;

Entry and exit report from the Federal Authority of Identity and Citizenship.
The application fee is AED 50 (USD 14). Individuals who are already registered in the tax system will have to pay an additional AED 500 (USD 136), while those who are unregistered must pay AED 1000 (USD 272). The electronic version of the TRC will be ready within three days from the date of application, with the paper form taking up to seven days to prepare.

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