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Company files closed, I am on temporary residence. Will I be able to transfer residence?

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I have been working as an engineer in a very big and reputed company in Kuwait since January 2004 on a government project visa after being recruited from abroad (India). Our company is passing through tremendous financial problems for the last few years. Due to this financial problems, I, (I mean almost all the permanent employees of this company) did not get salaries for the months of January, February, May & June 2016.

My work permit and residency/ Civil ID also expired on 04-05-2016 and still my company has not been able to get a new work permit for a new residency. Now, my company has put a temporary residency for 3 months i.e. valid up to end of this month. I also came to know from our administration that all files have been closed by the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor of Kuwait (Shaun Office).

In this situation, if I get a job with a new sponsor for a private or government project, is it possible for me to get a transfer from my present company to the new sponsor during this my temporary residency period?

Kindly, give me the proper legal advice and also provide me details of the needful procedures so that I can follow the same.

Name withheld

Answer: As long as the company’s files are closed you will not be able to transfer your residence to any other sponsor (forget about the transferring to the private sector because such transfers from government projects are not allowed).

The only way out of this situation — to transfer to another government project — is to take your sponsor to court and let the court order the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor to allow your transfer. There is no other solution.

Last year, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor announced an amnesty for all expatriates whose companies had been closed and they were allowed to transfer their residencies as long as they found new sponsors but so far there is no indication whether the ministry is planning such a move again.

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