After you step foot in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia while holding an employment or work visa, the countdown of your residence permit will start as it only has a 90-day validity.
Before the expiry of your visa’s validity, it will be the responsibility of your employer to get a residence permit known as the Iqama or the Muqeem identity card.
Each employee has the right to ask his or her employer to sponsor the Iqama or the Muqeem Identity Card which acts as residence permit before the expiration of their working visa.
If the Employer or the Sponsor fails to issue the Iqama or the Muqeem card to the employee within 90 days of the worker’s arrival, penalties will be charged to the employee.
In instances when you came to the Kingdom with a Free or Azad visa, you will be required to make payments for the Iqama depending on your deal.
STEP BY STEP PROCESS FOR FIRST TIME IQAMA OR MUQEEM APPLICANTS:
- The employer will request you to visit approved and accredited medical centers for medical tests by providing you a copy of your passport.
- Two days after the medical tests are completed, the report will come out. The medical report will be directly forwarded to the Ministry.
- Once this is done, people from the HR department will request for your Passport and 2 photographs.
- If you have an engineer visa, you need to register with the Saudi Council of Engineering. Meanwhile, if you have a visa under the medical profession, you need to undergo registration with the Saudi Medical Council.
These are the required documents you need when it is your first time to apply for an Iqama:
In general, your employer would be the one to make arrangements for all these things if you are holding a work visa. However, when you have an Azad or a free visa, the kafeel will bill you for the charges involved in this process.
- The form for the Iqama or residence permit as well as other required documents
- Annual Muqeem or Iqama fee of SR 650
- The medical report
- When less than 50% of the company is Saudi’s, an SR 2400 will be charged by the labour office. Meanwhile if you are on the free Azad visa, the kafeel will ask for fees.
After receiving your Muqeem or Iqama card, make sure that the name on it will match the name of your Passport in English and in Arabic.
You can also check the write up on correcting the name on your Muqeem Card if there is any problem with it.