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February 06, 2019

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"The freedom of movement and residence will be granted within limits of laws" quotes from Article 29 of the UAE constitution offers freedom and simultaneously curtail it based on law. It implies that everyone enjoys the freedom to travel inside and outside the country unless specifically objected to by law through a travel ban.

The notion travel ban or deportation is used in common parlance in UAE and can be imposed on various grounds such as, such as a consequence of a criminal act, violating immigration laws, or unpaid debts, under a civil claim. The concerned article, by Criminal Lawyers in Dubai, intends to guide the readers in comprehending the laws pertaining to a travel ban in UAE, the procedure for removing a travel ban in UAE and other similar points.

In legal terms travel ban is a restriction on ongoing freedom of movement or prohibiting a particular individual from entering, re-entering or exiting the country. The travel ban so issued by the government of UAE restricts the individual to cross the border through any means of transport. As mentioned above, a travel ban can be caused through a variety of claims and complaints and some of these claims arose due to legal implications or due to immigration. A travel ban is distinctly different from a labour ban or an arrest warrant, and the difference is highlighted below:

  1. Travel Ban and Labor Ban: A labour ban does not restrict the individual to enter or exit the country. However, it restricts receiving a work permit from MOHRE (Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization) for a limited period pursuant to Federal Law Number 8 of 1980 concerning the Labor Law of UAE and its amendments. In such circumstances, the employee can either visit the country on a different visa and can apply for a job where a work permit from MOHRE is not required such as in free zone companies or the public sector. On the other hand, a travel ban is an immigration ban to entering UAE for all or any reason.

  2. Travel Ban and Arrest Warrant: An arrest warrant is issued for the detention of a person by a competent authority who committed a criminal offence under Article 45-46 of the Federal Law Number 3 of 1987 concerning the Penal Code or who fails to oblige with the final judgment of execution court under Federal Law Number 11 of 1992 regarding the Civil Procedure Code.

An arrest warrant under criminal law is issued if the public prosecutor has sufficient evidence of his guilt, whereas, under Civil Law, the arrest warrant can be issued by a judge of Execution court, should the debtor fails to submit a claim which is more than AED 10,000. Ergo, the objective of an arrest warrant is entirely different from that of the travel ban, as, in an arrest warrant, the accused is kept in custody until the happening of a specific event, whereas, the travel ban does not let the person enter or exit the country permanently until specifically removed.

In the case of a travel ban, the accused will not be allowed to cross the border or enter UAE, however, it does not mean that he will be detained at the airport unless specifically mentioned by the court or competent authority. All arrest warrants entail a travel ban, but all travel ban does not require an arrest warrant.

UAE Laws on Travel Ban

The legislature of UAE does not involve a particular law designated to issues pertaining to a travel ban and the procedure for its removal.

However, its existence is evident from various federal laws of the UAE. Accordingly, Federal Law Number 6 of 1972 regarding the Immigration law and an amendment through Ministerial Decree Number 83 of 2002 provides a non-exhaustive list of categories under which an expatriate cannot enter or exit the country.

The preceding list is defined under Article 94 of the Decree as follows: 

Individuals restricted from entering the country: 

  1. The individual against whom a criminal complaint has been filed; 

  2. A person who has been deported by the competent authority;

  3. An individual who has been expelled or has a travel ban from GCC countries;

  4. Anyone who is involved in the activity reported by Interpol; 

  5. Someone who suffers from a disease which is hazardous to public health.

Individuals who are restricted to leave the country: 

  1. Anyone who holds a travel ban imposed by any public prosecutor due to an ongoing investigation; 

  2. Someone who is banned by the criminal or civil court; 

  3. Ban issued by the Minister for those who default in the payment of debts of the UAE government.

Reasons and Removal of Travel Ban

Although UAE does not have a specific legislature for a travel ban, foreign expatriates can still face travel bans on several grounds which are broadly classified under the following groups along with a procedure to remove the ban, subject to the discretion of the UAE government:

i. Violation of laws of Immigration

Under the laws of Immigration, an expatriate may face a travel ban on several grounds such as: 

  • If a person is employed without a valid work permit; 

  • Illegally entering the country; 

  • Overstay on the visa; 

  • Resigning the job without updating the employer or leaving the country without cancelling the work permit.

Procedure for removal

The bans are issued automatically by a competent authority and can be extended for a lifetime. This ban can be imposed if requested by one party like the employer, and the competent authority declares the employee as absconding and imposes a permanent travel ban. The accused can submit an application before the immigration authority for the removal of the travel ban. However, it is advised to seek legal representation from Criminal Lawyers in Dubai for the removal of such a ban.

ii. Outstanding debt In case of unpaid debt, the creditor is empowered under Articles 329 and 330 of the UAE Civil Procedure Code, through which he can submit a request before the competent court to prohibit the debtor from travelling when there is a strong apprehension that the debtor will abscond from the country without paying the debt which will frustrate the whole proceedings. Therefore, the request for the ban is to recover the outstanding payments.

However, the ban ceases to exist if the debt is repaid. The procedure for Removal of the ban is imposed upon the request of the creditor. However, there are certain conditions and perquisites that the creditor must consider before submitting a written request for a travel ban as outlined in Article 329 of the Civil Code as follows:

  • The creditor must prove beyond any doubt that the debtor will abscond;

  • The amount of debt exceeds AED 10,000;

  • The debt should be of a definite amount; 

  • If the debt amount is not clear, then the judge is authorized to analyze the debt based on written evidence and the guarantee submitted by the creditor to cover the damages. 

Under the preceding circumstances, the debtor can apply to the court to object to the travel ban by filing a complaint before a higher judge. Also, the ban can be removed in some instances as follows:

  • If a creditor takes back the application;

  • If the debtor submits a bank guarantee;

  • If the debtor repays the claim in court or to the creditor.

iii. Criminal offence An automatic travel ban is imposed on the person if he is charged with a criminal offence or has violated any provision of the criminal law. It can also be imposed in civil or commercial transactions such as cheque bounces.

Procedure for Removal

A ban on a criminal offence remains in force until the period of investigation, trial and judgment of the criminal case. In such circumstances, the accused can submit a complaint before the competent court and can request bail, however, it is pertinent to note that under a travel ban for a criminal offence, the accused can submit an application for bail and can be released from the police custody, however, will not be allowed to travel until the final judgment.

iv. Personal Status law In accordance with the Federal Law Number 28 of 2005 concerning the Personal Status Law, either parent can request the court to impose a travel ban on the child/children as a consequence of which the other parent will not be able to travel outside the country with the child without the written consent of the other parent that has applied the travel ban. However, if the party fails to seek prior approval, they must justify before the court the reasons behind the travel.

Procedure for Removal

The procedure for this travel ban is completed within 24 hours from the time of application. In such circumstances, the relevant parent can apply for the removal of the travel ban on the child with strong reasons. Thus, it is always advised to seek legal representations to convince the court of such a motion.

Careful Comparison Between Deportation and Travel Ban

One of the most significant differences between the travel ban and deportation is the interest of the parties wherein; a travel ban is imposed to protect the individual interest, whereas, deportation is imposed in the interest of the public at large. The annulment of a deportation order is difficult, however, not impossible as, under Article 132 of the UAE Penal Code, the deportation order can be lifted upon the request of the relevant authority.

Another issue which has been resolved by the Civil Procedure Law is regarding a situation in which a person having a deportation order holds a travel ban as well. In such cases, an ad hoc committee will be established which will decide the merit of the case. Also, if sufficient evidence for his outstanding dues has been submitted, the deportation order might be put on hold.

Conclusion

In any case, if you have a suspicion that a travel ban has been imposed on you in UAE, it is advisable to contact the Best Lawyers of Dubai and to conduct a check on your legal status before visiting UAE.


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Comments

Its possible to travel in pakistan even your have labour ban in the uae??
Shane
2022-05-28
A travel ban may be a result of a criminal case or a civil matter that has reached execution procedures. A travel ban prevents flight risk. In case you would like to discuss more about the travel ban and how it may be removed, it is advisable to consult a lawyer who can guide you on this matter.

Should you have any questions, please let me know.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hlo sir I am now india al most 6month.my company temporary close to 22march to till now sir.i have my Etisalat plan.every month bill came like 150 aed.what i do sir.
Rohit kumar
2021-03-01
From your enquiry we presume that you are working for a company in the UAE and the said company is working at a reduced capacity due to the restrictions imposed by Covid. We further understand that you are facing financial hardships. Unfortunately, we can only advise you to proceed to pay off your outstanding utility charges and also to consider discontinuing the services to avoid further liabilities.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Is travel ban to Dubai going to affect spouse travelling to another country?
AH
2020-12-09
Whereas travel ban is a restriction imposed on the individual for reasons related to immigration issues, execution procedures in civil matters or urgent travel ban pending a civil matter and criminal matters, however, such restrictions do not affect a person's spouse or relative.

Please feel free to contact us if further advise is required.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Can you help me to check if I have a travel ban in UAE, i left UAE a year already because i lost a job and i left some liabilities to 3 banks there, and i want to travel back to UAE. Will you help me on this. Thank you.
Lyn
2020-10-29
Thank you for contacting us with regard to your legal concerns.

We can assist you by conducting a legal status check on your behalf to determine if there is a travel ban registered under your name.

We can check with the courts, public prosecution, police, and immigration departments regarding a case registered under your name. If we discover any details or information, we will contact you immediately. Please note that we will inform you about

a) any options available;
b) whether we can take the case or not;
c) the actions you can take;
d) and your chances of success in a concerned lawsuit.

Our professional fee for this service applies. Please feel free to contact us if you have any queries or concerns, we would be happy to revert to you.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hi, RDC executed an arrest warrant because of rental chq bounce. I would like to know: 1. can I request for a bail so that I can look for a job? 2. After finding a job, can my employment visa be changed under these conditions? 3. Any other suggestions to ease these procedures? Thank you!
erfan
2020-09-19
We are a leading law firm in the region. With a wide area of expertise and ground connections, we're adept at providing bespoke legal advice pertaining to your enquiry.

Whereas writing a cheque is a criminal offence, and considering that your matter is before Rental Dispute Center, we understand an arrest warrant may be as a result of the execution of the case judgement against you. Accordingly, you may negotiate the terms of settlement with the landlord and submit such an agreement before the execution court. We understand that you are pursuing employment prospects and would like to defer the payment until you have a job so that you can make payments towards the judgement award in intervals until it is paid off. It is advisable to seek the advice of a legal consultant to discuss the matter further. Please revert to us if you would like to schedule a paid consultation meeting with us.

Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Dear Sir, I have given my cheque in 2017 to my friend to renew his trade license from Ajman Freezone. Just i did help for him. But when i have renewal of my visa April 2020 i came to know i have travel ban because of him. from last may he is telling he is trying to solve becauese of my pressure finally he moved with Danube properties lawyers the case. before 2 weeks he said he got a judgement but he is wiating to get clearance letter. but till today not. I would like to know below 2 things. 1. After judgement how many days it will take to get clerance letter 2. How to know judgement came against the case because i am not having believe on his words. Please give me your valuable suggestion.
Mary
2020-07-25
Thank you for your comment. When a cheque is dishonored, the issuer of the cheque may be subject to a criminal case resulting in fine or jail term subject to the value of the cheque amount among other factors. However, the beneficiary is still entitled to file a civil case to recover the outstanding amount pursuant to the dishonored cheque.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Dear sir My brother in law who was working in Dubai as a senior account manager was falsely implicated in a breach of trust case he was given punishment of 1 year and ordered to be deported while he has completed his punishment the company has filed a civil case and he has been in detention in deportation cell Will be able to get a bail and come out to contest the case or will he be held in deportation till his civil case judgement is given Appreciate if you can guide us on this His family is suffering from severe crisis and trauma Appreciate your advice and help
Maniraj
2020-06-26
In furtherance to your concern, it is sincerely advised to appoint lawyers in regards for allowing him to be released on bail and contest his civil case or to submit POA to lawyers who can legally represent him before the civil courts. In this regard, if you wish to appoint lawyers, please revert to us and we will arrange a consultation meeting with the relevant legal consultants   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Can I change visa when am on police bail
Nana
2020-06-08
In furtherance to your concern, please note that you may request the public prosecution in order to update or change your visa status as only the public prosecutor can entertain this request.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
I was told today by the labour official that I had a ban that I should go and cancel my contract. But when I asked because before now the P.R.O. told me that I have I month to look for job after cancellation but was surprise today that I have a ban because I was cancelled during my probation period. What is your advice please?
Uchechukwu John Uhalla
2020-06-06
In furtherance to your inquiry, you may approach the Ministry of Immigration or Ministry of Labor again to check your status in the country. In addition, you may approach our legal consultants to arrange a consultation call and discuss the matter in detail. Do let us know if you wish to proceed with the consultation meeting.

I look forward to hearing from you.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Can you please help me to check my status if i have a lifetime banned in dubai..i just want to go back dubai..please help me..
Gina m.antonio
2020-04-26
We can assist you in this matter by conducting a legal status check on your behalf to determine what kind of case was filed against you and whether you have ban registered under your name.

Therefore, if you would like us to proceed, feel free to contact us if you have any queries or concerns, we would be happy to revert to you.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
I have travel ban because i have borrowed some money from someone but I can’t pay him now and he made a case against me. I’m willing to pay him in 6 months time as it’s high amount but he doesn’t accept it. I need to travel back home to afford him some money but in that case i need to travel. Would it be possible to remove my travel ban if i provide a guarantee???
Mujtaba
2020-01-30
Non-payment of liabilities is an offense which envisages detention or fine, inter alia. Emirati jurisprudence has generally considered proven the "bad faith" in the performance of an obligation by the fact of the debtor's unjustifiable refusal to pay, despite repeated demands from the creditor.

Accordingly, it is advisable to schedule a consultation meeting with a legal consultant to assess your legal position and establish the best legal recourse at your disposal to handle your matter.

Please share your availability and your best call back number and accordingly we will schedule a consultation with you. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hi.. I was convicted in 2006 by Sharjah court and also completed the 3 months jail term in that year itself. I was deported from the country by the Police authorities. I had a ban on my passport which says cannot enter UAE for 1 year from the date of deportation. But it is very confusing. someone says criminal offence automatically triggers blacklist status and one cant enter UAE without an appeal in the court. I have my sister and family in UAE and would like to visit UAE again. Can you help me with the procedure ? my contact is 00918879066666
Anil G Jagtiani
2019-12-21
We understand that you would like to confirm whether or not there is a travel ban on you. Please be informed that conducting a legal status check before traveling can save you from the embarrassment of being stopped at the airport.

There are various avenues to provide you with your legal status information. Ban may result for reasons, among others, labor matters, outstanding debt, immigration violation, and such other issues. You may engage a legal professional to assist you in determining as to what ban you have and the appropriate way to resolve such issues.

Should you have any question, please feel free to contact us.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Good day Please I want to know if I have a travel ban from travelling out of the UAE Due to some circumstances am owing credit card with 3 different banks Thanks
Efechaobor Oghenetega Thompson
2019-10-12
kindly be informed we can assist you in checking your legal status in the country for criminal and civil matters, upon receiving a legalized power of attorney. In this regards, I would suggest you to arrange a consultation meeting with our legal consultant.

Please feel free to contact us in case you want to be advised in more detail, I would be happy to arrange it for you.

  Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hi, I have some Outstanding amount dues in Mashreq bank , it was pending from last 4 Months. How i can check is there any Travel ban
Midun Raj
2019-10-10
We understand that you would like to confirm whether or not there is a travel ban on you. Please be informed that conducting a legal status check before traveling can save you from the embarrassment of being stopped at the airport.

There are various avenues to provide you with your legal status information. Ban may result for various reasons, among others, outstanding debt is one of the likely reasons. You may engage a legal professional to assist you in determining as to what ban you have and the appropriate way to resolve such issues. If you would like to retain us to provide you with the legal status information, please feel free to revert to us and we will be pleased to assist you with.

  Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hi.. i want to know if i have a travel ban.. i have a financial case due to RERA but when i checked dubaipolice.gov.ae website the value is AED 0.. i am confuse with this.. can i leave the country or i cannot? Thank you for your help
Iris
2019-09-18
We understand that you would like to confirm whether or not there is a travel ban on you. Please be informed that conducting a legal status check before traveling can save you from the embarrassment of being stopped at the airport.

There are various avenues to provide you with your legal status information. Ban may result for reasons, among others, labor matters, outstanding debt, immigration violation, and such other issues. You may engage a legal professional to assist you in determining as to what ban you have and the appropriate way to resolve such issues.

If you would like to retain us to provide you with the legal status information, please feel free to revert to us and we will be pleased to assist you with.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Can you help me to check if i have travel ban?
Nerlyn
2019-09-15
We understand that you would like to confirm whether or not there is a travel ban on you. Please be informed that conducting a legal status check before traveling can save you from the embarrassment of being stopped at the airport.

There are various avenues to provide you with your legal status information. Ban may result for reasons, among others, labor matters, outstanding debt, immigration violation, and such other issues. You may engage a legal professional to assist you in determining as to what ban you have and the appropriate way to resolve such issues.

Should you have any question, please feel free to contact us.   Dr. Hassan Elhais
Hi i was banned in Dubai is there a possibility that i ca go in abudhabi because i have a job offer. Thank you.
Ching Baylon
2019-08-04
Please be informed that there are various types of bans such as immigration ban and labor ban. Depending on the type of ban you have, we can advise you on your legal position and the best legal recourse to lift the ban.

You may engage us to determine your legal status. If you would like to engage us, please revert to us and we will guide you of our fees to conduct a legal status check.

Should you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.   Dr. Hassan Elhais

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