Following Ministerial Decision No. 25 of 2011, Emirates Identity Authority has set the final deadlines for the implementation of the Emirates ID-Card and the registration by all residents of the United Arab Emirates under the ID-Card scheme.
Other than in the previous cases of deadlines, there is now a clear system of penalties in place. Furthermore it has been announced that an earlier ministerial decision requiring the presentation of the ID-Card by anyone who wishes to conduct any transaction with any governmental authority will be implemented in line with these new deadlines.
Anybody who misses the relevant deadline for a new registration, for the renewal of an existing ID-Card or for the filing of changes in his personal data with the Authority will face a penalty of 20 Dhs per day of delay, with a maximum fine of 1000 Dhs.
Deadline for new registration
Whilst for UAE nationals the final deadline for new registrations in general is set to be the 31 October 2011, for expatriates it will depend on whether the person in question is employed in the public sector and in which Emirate he has his place of residence. Four phases are distinguished:
Phase 1 – For all expatriates employed in the public sector (federal or local, governmental or semi-governmental organisations) as well as for all other expatriates residing in Fujeirah, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm al Quwain and Ajman the deadline has been set for 1 December 2011;
Phase 2 – For all expatriates residing in Sharjah the deadline is 1 February 2012;
Phase 3 – For all expatriates residing in Abu Dhabi the deadline is 1 April 2012; and
Phase 4 – For all expatriates residing in Dubai the deadline is 1 June 2012.
Children under 15 years of age are exempted from these deadlines. For them however, the later deadline of 1 October 2012 applies.
Deadline for renewal
For any renewal of an existing ID-Card the deadline is set to be the 31st October 2011 with regards to all ID-Cards that have expired before that date. For ID-Cards expiring after the 31st October 2011 there is a time limit of 30 days after the day of expiry to carry out the renewal.
Accelerated deadline for whose residence visa requires renewal
As of 1 January 2012 whoever wishes to renew his residence visa will be required to provide an ID registration. As a result in such case one may very well be forced to apply for the ID Card prior to the above mentioned deadlines.
Obligation to inform authority of change in personal data
Furthermore, any changes in the relevant personal data recorded at the Emirates Identity Authority has to be brought to the attention of the authority within 30 days of the day on which the data changing event has occurred. A definition and catalogue of such relevant personal data is still pending, but it is expected that any personal status information, such as name change, change in marital status, etcetera, along with other visa-related information, such as employer, address, etcetera will be included.
Whereas over the past four years deadlines repeatedly ran out with no consequence and the ID-Card struggled to get off the ground, with many including us judging that though it was a good idea but in practice rather a waste of time, we now see a swift change of fortunes for this plastic card. Soon, it is predicted, everybody will not only have one, everybody will also need to have it, and not only to avoid penalties. Therefore, we can only advise to apply for it within the above mentioned deadlines.
The process is simple enough and Emirates Identity Authority claims that due to the appointment system the average time spent at the registration centers is now only 5 minutes. More information available at www.emiratesid.ae.
Fichte & Co