A new sponsorship law has been announced today. Many of the features of the previous law have been retained. Hopefully, though, the law will clear up some existing confusion about the conditions. Insofar as the law has changed, it does seem to be extending and protecting the rights of both employees and women.
Below we have covered some of the main points - many of which cover frequently asked questions by our readers.
Leaving Jobs: As before, workers leaving their jobs without an NOC will have to wait for two years. A period of five years had been under discussion, but was not excecuted. Those with an NOC (No Objection Certifcate) from their employer will be able to continue working in Qatar.
Sponsoring Families: Until now women seeking to sponsor husbands and children have often had their applications rejected. The new law states that they can sponsor both spouses and children. Qatari women can also sponsor foreign husbands and children.
Residents Permits: Those on residence permits who wish to spend more than six months out of the country can do so as long as they pay a fee first.
Children: Children may be brought into the country up until the age of two years of age without a residence permit by a parent who has a residence permit. However, the parents must apply for the child's residence permit within sixty days of child arriving in Qatar.
Exit Permits: While employers must continue to request an exit permit from their employers, those not granted an exit permit can seek a clearance certificate from court. In the event of them not having a pending court case or judgement, they will then be allowed to leave the country without an exit permit.
Travel Documents: Employers are not allowed to retain their employee's passports or travel documents.
Death: Sponsors must pay for the funeral of their employees, and for the costs of transporting the body to the home country of the deceased should the deceased's family request this.
Related articles on the website: Labour Law | Working Women in Qatar