The entire process of getting a residence permit or work visa was rather vague and unpleasant to most ex-pats I have encountered due to insufficient and inaccurate information. That is, I decided to share my experiences not as an ex-pat who got a RP 3 years ago, but as an HR professional who walks with this process every day of my life since I became an ex-pat.
On the other hand, this process is based on the usual procedure and in line with the updated law. This will be a step by step flow on acquiring a resident permit under WORK VISA only. If you are holding a different type of visas such as tourist, business or family visa, you need to transfer it first to a work visa.
SELECTION AND JOB OFFER
If you have successfully passed the final interview and other pre-employment requirements for the position you are applying for, the company shall present you a JOB EMPLOYMENT OFFER.
Once you have accepted the offer, your signature must be indicated, counter-signed by the company’s authorized signatory.
A work visa shall be given to you in order for you to enter the State of Qatar. (for those handling a tourist, business, family visa, special requirements shall be asked for you to proceed in acquiring a work visa.
The requirements are the following:
Your company PRO shall process all necessary proceedings for your work visa. It usually takes a minimum of 3 working days to be approved by the Ministry of Interior however, it could also be delayed up to 1 month due to some internal problems especially in the cases for transferring visas.
RESIDENT PERMIT PROCESSING
Work permits for Qatar are formally known as Work Residence Permit. To successfully receive your RP, you cannot leave the country during the time in which your work entry visa is being converted. The processing period is roughly six weeks, but this can vary.
Upon arrival or having a work visa, a medical assessment shall be done during the first week of being in Qatar. Online registration shall be made by your company and they will take you to the Medical Commission for your health evaluation.
The result from the Medical Commission usually takes about a week. Possible results are as follows:
Congratulations! You are healthy and fit to work and can proceed with the Fingerprinting process.
Unfortunately, you have health problems discovered during blood screening or x-ray screening. Sadly, you will be immediately sent to your home country.
If you have suspicious findings in your medical examinations you will undergo the following:
- You will be referred to Rumailah Hospital for medication
- You will repeat the whole medical clearance procedure
Your medical procedure will make or break your stay in Qatar. The country is very strict when it comes to health concerns especially to those jobs in the food and beverage industry.
If you have successfully passed the medical procedure, fingerprinting shall be made and your company will bring you to Forensic Laboratory at Criminal Evidence and Information Department (CEID). All arrangements pertaining to this shall be made by your company’s PRO.
Once you have successfully enrolled in the CEID system, the company shall proceed with the registration of your official resident permit through an online Government portal or manual application.
An employment contract must be furnished in 3 copies (for you, for your company, and for the Labour Department). The contracts must be translated in both Arabic and English containing your salary remuneration, duration of the contract and so forth.
The result from the Finger Print usually takes about a week. Possible results are as follows:
Congratulations! You are now an official overseas worker! Proceed to the next level!
Don’t get upset if you’re registration got deny for the first time, possible reasons are: you need to repeat fingerprinting, submit NOC if you have been to Qatar in the previous year.
Take note that you will only be denied of having an RP if the following reasons you have committed:
- a crime punishable by law (grave offense)
- banned for having a work visa
QID / PATAKA
Finally, you now owned your personal identity card or what we often called as PATAKA. Always remember to carry it all way round to avoid any troubles with police officers. I believe you have already heard about the random checking of QID’s. So you better attached it to your body!
So there you have it, this post is dedicated to all Qatar ex-pats who is still trapped with the limited information in obtaining resident/work visa. If any of the above procedures would you like to elaborate more, feel free to comment down below and let us establish a working and learning process throughout this post.
Good luck to you and may the odds be ever in your favor!