Qatar Travel Guide
Dependent and Family Visa Process
Families of sponsored residents in Qatar can enter the country on a short-term Family Visit Visa, with one-month validity. To stay beyond one month, the visa can be extended to a maximum of six months (five extendable months permitted for immediate family members, and two months for second degree relatives). However, expatriates intending to bring in their families to reside in Qatar, should go through the process explained below.
A Dependent or Family visa is granted to dependents (usually spouses and children) of sponsors. Expatriates will have to reach Qatar in advance and obtain a Residence Permit, before sponsoring their dependents.
Dependent female spouses, with family residence permits, do not require multiple exit visas. However, dependent male spouses require either a multiple exit visa or a single exit visa whenever they travel. Dependent spouses on family residence permits can work (usually males), if necessary, either under the sponsorship of their spouse, or by transferring the sponsorship to their employer.
Effective 1st January 2012, there have been some major changes incorporated in Dependent Visa rules by the Passports and Expatriates Division of the Interior Ministry in Qatar. The new rule mandates that a minimum salary of QR10,000 is a must to bring in their families to Qatar. Earlier, the minimum salary requirement was QR7000 per month, which was later raised to QR8000 a month, and is now raised to QR10,000.
The applicant should have a Qatari ID first before seeking a Family Visa. Male children should be below the age of 25, to be sponsored, but, there is no age restriction for bringing in daughters, provided they are unmarried.
As for the procedure, you may have to complete a form and submit it along with requisite documents such as approval letter from work, copies of residence permit of sponsoring person, bank statement of salary for past six months (for non-government employees), copies of birth certificates, marriage certificates and education certificates, passport photos of yourself and your dependents and proof of address (such as utility bill) of principal family member.
The application form can be downloaded from the websitewww.gov.qa and submitted with appropriate fee and relevant documents to the Department of Employment at the Ministry of Labour. The application form should have the Arabic version too.
Just as is the case with Work Residence Permit, the sponsoring employer of the principal family member will have to handle the administrative procedures too, in majority of the cases. All family members may be required to undergo medical test and take fingerprint records.
The family members are allowed to enter Qatar on an Entry Visa. The application procedure will take nearly six weeks for completion. All Family Residence Visas need to be renewed prior to expiry of the visa.
The Hukoomi website (www.gov.qa) visa section includes details of all latest visa regulations and how to apply for them.
A special panel at the Ministry will scan every family visa application from expatriate employees, before taking a decision. The panel has its own ways to detect false information and fake documents provided by the applicants.
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