Legal Clinic

  • Local transfer for project visa

    My friend had come to Kuwait on normal Article 18 Visa to one of the biggest retail companies in Middle East; however he completed 4 years and then transferred the residency to another company which was in Mubarak Al-Kabeer (small project), he completed 21/2 months (during probation) and got a better job opportunity in another big company in Kuwait. Can he transfer his residency to a big project? He entered Kuwait on a big project and have a Bachelors degree too, please advise.

    Name withheld

    Answer: Since the transfer to the current company was a local one, your friend should have no difficulty in asking for transfer to another company whether small or big project. The mandatory one year service to be offered before asking for a release under local transfer, is not applicable to your friend since he holds a university degree. The type of visa that one first entered Kuwait with is also taken into consideration when visa transfers are being effected. This means that since your friend is now holding a small project visa, he cannot be barred from transferring to a big project company since he first entered Kuwait under a big project visa.

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  • You can renew your Civil ID 3 months prior to its expiry

    I am going to India for my delivery which will be in November along with my daughter; so we would go next month and planning to come back after six months may be on February last week. Our Civil IDs are expiring next year Jan. 6; so can we renew them at the earliest that is within this month?

    Name withheld

    Answer: It is possible to renew your Civil ID three months prior to its expiry so you have to adjust your travel arrangements taking into consideration the 3-month window within which you can renew your Civil ID.

  • Resignation letter issue

    On April 29, 2019, I had submitted my resignation letter. One week later, my direct superior, who is the HR manager of the company, and I discussed about it after which we reached a verbal agreement that I would continue working in the company for the time being.

    Since then, I have neither seen my resignation letter nor received an acknowledgement of its receipt.
    Around July, I lost motivation to continue working in the company due to some office politics, and I once again expressed my intent to leave the company. To my surprise, the management decided on July 9, 2019 to accept the resignation letter that I submitted in April, and declared July 29, 2019 as the end of my notice period. I was also notified in writing that July 29 will be my last working day in the company, and I had time until end of July or August to look for another company/sponsor to transfer my visa locally.

    As of today, I am still searching for a job in Kuwait. I would like to make some legal inquiries concerning this matter. Firstly, could you please advise if what they did in terms of delaying the acceptance of my resignation is correct? Secondly, if I am unable to find a job in Kuwait and get my visa transferred to a different sponsor by the end of August, what will be the legal implications?

    Name withheld

    Answer: There is no simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer to your first question. Even though there is a semblance of breach of trust when your boss prevailed on you to continue working in the company for the time being but reneged on this verbal agreement when you once again expressed your intent to leave.

    At this juncture, we must point out to you that you made a big mistake in not taking back your resignation letter from your boss when he prevailed on you to change your mind to resign.

    Armed with your resignation letter, your boss can argue on the legality of the steps he has taken but you don’t have any superior argument to counter his claims as it will be difficult for you to prove the verbal agreement reached with him especially if he decides to deny ever concluding such an agreement with you.

    As to your second question, there is not much you can do except to reach an understanding with the company to give you more time to effect the transfer. Let it be known however, that you can’t have time in perpetuity to transfer your visa and this must conclude at a point in time with either a transfer or if not possible a return to your country for good or to come back on a new visa.

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  • Family visa staying outside Kuwait for more then 6 mnts

    Can my wife and daughter both having a family visa stay out of Kuwait for more than 6 months? If not, can I extend some how without any reason?

    Name withheld

    Answer: No, neither your wife nor daughter can stay outside Kuwait for more than six months without any reason. If they did they would be barred from re-entering Kuwait as their visas would have automatically been cancelled after six months stay outside Kuwait.

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  • Are all Visa 18s transferable or releasable?

    Good day! I want to ask if, all Visa 18s transferable or releasable? Also how will I know which type of Visa 18 I am holding? Someone told me that there’s types of Visa 18. When I checked my residence Online (MoI Kuwait) it says I am working in the private sector. By the way my first contract is about to end so I am planning to renew it and will ask my employer in the future to release me? Thank you in advance, hope you could help me.

    Name withheld

    Answer: Yes, it is true there are different types of Visa 18s which are all transferrable but it must be pointed out that while some of them can be transferred across board others can only be transferred within the category under which they were issued. For example a Visa 18 issued under the factory visa category can only be transferred within the same factory category and not outside. Your Mandoub should be in position to tell you the types of Visa 18 that you are holding.

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  • Driving license for Diploma holder

    I have been working in a company as a ‘Electrical technician’ since Dec 2017 to till date and having salary of less than KD 600 but next year will be increased to KD 600. I entered Kuwait in Dec 2017 with same profession in Visa 18. I have 2 year diploma equal to graduate (not engineering degree) Based on the information provided above, will I be eligible to obtain a driving licence after completion two years in Kuwait and an increase of my salary to KD 600?

    Name withheld

    Answer: The rule says you must be a university degree holder before you can apply for a driving licence. We doubt very much if your two-year diploma will be accepted as being equivalent to a university degree. On the basis of this we don’t think you can acquire a Kuwaiti driving licence even if your salary is raised to KD 600 per month.

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  • Change from Project visa to Private visa after 3 yrs of service

    I have worked in my company for 3 years now and I want to take release but my visa is government contract visa. Can I get another company on this visa and also possible for them to change it to private visa.

    Name withheld

    Answer: If you were originally brought to Kuwait by your current company on a project visa, the law say that you can transfer only to another project visa of the same sponsor or another project visa of a different sponsor if the current project has been completed or to the general file of the current sponsor. In the case of the latter transfer you may be lucky to get a transfer to the private sector if your sponsor has no objection. In each of these scenarios mentioned, different fees are charged to effect the change involved

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  • Minimum 9 months required to apply for 30-days paid annual leave

    I started working in my current company on November 20, 2018. And I want to take my first annual leave on September 1, 2019. Based on this, https:// www.arabtimesonline.com/ news/first-nod-to-35-privatepaid- leave-days/ my understanding is that I can take my leave as early as 6 months from my date of joining the company, am I right? If yes, it should be a 35 days paid leave, right? Your immediate response is highly appreciated

    Name withheld

    Answer: Yes you can take your first annual leave on September 1, as you indicated because by that date you would have put in the minimum nine months required to apply for your 30-days paid annual leave.

    The 35 days you talked about was part of a bill tabled in parliament but did not see the light of the day as that aspect was shot down by the executive. We must point out that even though the permitted annual paid leave is 30 days, the worker shall be entitled to a leave for a fraction of the year in proportion of the time he spent at work even during his/her first year of employment.

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  • How many times an expat can take visit visa for wife and child in a year?

    I earn a salary of KD 430 per month. I need to know how many times I can take visit visa for my wife and child in a year?

    Name withheld

    Answer: Under current rules and regulations, when a visit visa is applied for and utilized, the beneficiary of such a visa can only enter Kuwait with another visit visa after the expiry of six months from the last departure date. It is therefore possible to apply for two visit visas within one year provided that you do so in accordance with what rule says.

  • Termination of service

    I have been working in Kuwait since October 2017. Unfortunately, I received a termination letter from my employer. I got another job but the new employer wants me to join before the completion of my termination period in the current company. The manager in the current company said that if I want to leave one month before my last working day, I should write a letter in this regard. Will my current company deduct the remaining days from my final settlement or not? Will I receive indemnity if I leave one month before my final working day? If I complete the three months termination period in the current company, will the new employer allow me to join the new company upon completion of this period?

    Name withheld

    Answer: If the current company agree that you can leave before the expiry of the remaining month, then you should not expect to be paid for that month only. On the other hand if they insist that you work for the full three months and you decide to stop work on your own, then you will not be paid for the remaining month in addition to the company demanding compensation from you in lieu of the remaining unfulfilled one month service. As for the new employer allowing you to join the company the 3-months mandatory notice period, all that we can say is that the decision rests solely in the hands of the new employer and the understanding you and him come to before you agree to execute fully the three-month notice period with your current company. You can’t be denied your indemnity so far as your services have been terminated but you will be called upon to compensate the company for the one month service you haven’t performed if you choose to go that route.

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