Saudi Arabia: New rules for dependents’ ‘iqamas’

Riyadh: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s authorities have said that the wife of an expatriate whose religion differs from her husband must issue an independent Iqama or a residency permit, the local media reported on Saturday.

The Saudi General Directorate of Passports said that if the expatriate who is the head of a family wishes to add his wife and his minor children to his residence permit (Iqama), his wife is required to obtain an independent Iqama with a legally prescribed fee of Saudi Riyal 500.

Here is the procedure to add a wife and minor children to the residence permit

  • The head of the family must fill out the application form and match the information with reality as recorded in the passport, and then sign the form.
  • The head of the family must attach the application with the passport of his wife and children, in addition to an entry visa issued by the Saudi embassy to live with their guardian or the legal or official document to enable them to be added.

The directorate further adds that if an expatriate couple married inside the Kingdom and the man wanted to add his wife to his Iqama, her sponsorship must first be transferred to him after a copy of their marriage contract is forwarded and related fees are paid.

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In the case of minor children born in the Kingdom, originals and copies of their birth certificates, along with a medical report issued by an accredited hospital, are attached to a request to add them to the father’s Iqama.

As of March 2022, the total population of Saudi Arabia stands at 35.84 million including expatriates.

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