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Freelancers are professionals who are not engaged by a certain organization on a long-term basis. They are self-employed individuals who operate in a variety of creative fields such as art, sport, personal development, photography, education, or the media. The freelance permit makes business establishment services in Dubai cheaper for a big group of professionals who previously had no other options but to establish a company in Dubai or another Emirate

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Have you ever thought of going it alone? And we don't mean climbing to the top of the Burj Khalifa without someone holding your hand. Freelancing is what we're talking about. The freedom to choose your own working hours, choose which contracts you take on, and be your own boss. To be able to accomplish all of those things (and more), you'll need a residency visa and a UAE freelance license, which is a document that permits you to work lawfully as a freelancer, solo practitioner, or independent contractor in the UAE. And, as more people start their own businesses, it's becoming a more appealing proposition in the city. Where do you begin, though?

With the rise in smartphone and internet usage, freelancing has become not only trendy, but also a desired employment option. Freelancing has made its mark in the globe due to the convenience, independence, and money that comes with it. Who wouldn't want to be their own employer, after all? Freelancing is the way to go if you are bored with your typical 9-to-5 job, or if you are weary of repeating the same routine, or if you have a steady employment but want to establish a successful side business on your own time. Whatever option is best for you, there are a few things to think about before taking the plunge. In today's market, freelancing is the "in" thing to do.

The UAE government has recently announced the introduction of a new freelancer license that covers 48 different business activities and allows license holders to do business from their homes or other allowed locations.

Concept of Freelancers

Freelancers can apply for a permission and residency in one of the UAE's free zones, which allows you to do business under your birth name, which is akin to a brand name. Essentially, your profession must be associated to free zone activities that are largely media related, such as artists, editors, directors, writers, producers, photographers, make-up artists, and technicians in the film, television, and radio industries.

Recently, several professional entrepreneurs have expressed an interest in testing the market before investing and establishing a business in the UAE. Entrepreneurs with a freelance permit can test the market.

The process of obtaining a freelance permit differs slightly from that of forming a new business. Many professional entrepreneurs begin by freelancing and then switch to a more formal setup as their business grows.

For thousands of people, becoming their own boss is more than a dream. For those who have been working here for a while but want to start a side-company in the interim, freelancing is the ideal option to start with; however, it requires a good business strategy and determination to attract clients.

To achieve, it is self-evident that one must possess the necessary abilities, desire, and drive.

Selected free zones offer a freelancing permit package that allows freelancers to base themselves in the free zone by renting an office space or using a flexi-desk surrounded by other businesses that may demand the freelancer's services.

How can you get started as a freelancer in the United Arab Emirates?

There are currently numerous options for lawfully working for yourself in the UAE and the wider region, with many free zones giving a freelancer permission that allows you to obtain a residency visa as well as sponsor your family.

The options are numerous; some will depend on the activity/industry sector, and all can be completed online; you simply need to check the list of professions provided by the authority issuing the freelance permit. Because the cost of a freelance permit can vary significantly, it is critical that you shop around before deciding on a specific free zone to work from.

What Are the Freelance Opportunities in the UAE?

Freelancing is growing increasingly popular in the UAE, particularly among the younger population. The new trend is being supported by government initiatives and different cost-effective freelance licenses provided by several Freezones.

Many people are interested in the Freelancer License Permit because they want to work independently rather than for a company. The Freelancer Permit gives them legal protection for their work identity and helps them earn credibility with clients.

With the younger generation taking over the work floors, Dubai's work culture is transitioning away from traditional 9-5 office employment and toward a more flexible work life. The Freelance Permit is intended to encourage freelancers to grow their networks, obtain more acceptability, and eventually establish their own businesses in Dubai.

What are the advantages of working as a freelancer?

  • The ability to work from anywhere at any time.
  • Become self-sufficient.
  • Work-life balance is important.
  • Reduce your costs and increase your profits.
  • Multiple projects can be worked on at the same time.
  • Creating one's own personal brand.
  • There is no need for an office.

What Are the Advantages of Employing Freelancers?

  • When compared to permanent employees, there is a lower cost of hiring.
  • Freelancers might be chosen from a variety of possibilities.
  • The ability to hire industry expertise.
  • International recruiting is a possibility.

What are the most popular freelancing professions in the United Arab Emirates?

The following are some of the most popular freelancing jobs:

  • Branding
  • Computer-Aided-Design and 3D Modelling
  • Copy-writing and guest blogging
  • Graphics Designing
  • Guest lecturing and e-learning
  • Language translation and interpretation
  • Legal services
  • Mobile App Development
  • Sales & Marketing
  • Search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Search engine marketing (SEM)
  • Web design and development.

Freezone Freelance Permit

Because Freelance Permit in the UAE are issued by a Free Zone authority, there is a jurisdiction limitation to consider (operations must be carried out only within the Free Zone granting the permit or outside the UAE).

It's worth noting that freelance permits are governed by civil law, whereas businesses are governed by commercial law.

Because the civil law has no jurisdictional limitations, as a freelancer, you can be hired on an hourly basis by your clients as a service provider or a supplier. Because the Freelance Permit cannot include a company or business name, it is only issued to one person with the option of obtaining residency as a freelancer and does not grant an employment visa.

Freelance License in the Mainland

The Mainland "freelance" license is given by the Dubai and Abu Dhabi Departments of Economic Development (DED and ADDED), and so has no jurisdiction restrictions.

The DED e-trader license is a Mainland license with 100% ownership and no restrictions on operations within Dubai, allowing only professional and service activities (trading and commercial activities are not authorised). To receive a DED e-trader license, you must be a Dubai resident.

The Abu Dhabi freelancer license is also regarded as a Mainland license, as it covers a wide range of industries, including retail, social and cultural services, technology, media and advertising, gardening, and so forth. Owners of a license can apply for a resident visa for themselves as well as visas for their family members.

The Abu Dhabi freelance license will be a sole establishment, allowing 100 percent ownership without the need for a local agent.


Freelance Permit in Dubai

Fortunately, in 2018, the TECOM authorities introduced a new Dubai freelance permit product. It was a big step forward for all freelancers, with numerous advantages including a low cost, a rapid procedure, and a Dubai freelance work visa.

This TECOM freelance license Dubai can be granted to creative individuals working in the fields of media, technology, or education. Media City, Internet City, and Knowledge Village are the three sister free zones that provides Freelancers License.

A freelancer is a self-employed individual who provides services. If you have a valid license, Dubai might be one of the best areas to freelance. Freelancing in Dubai is a liberating experience. It is, however, challenging and often frightening, and it is certainly not a walk in the park. A good start, on the other hand, can make the voyage go more smoothly. If you have what it takes, the next step is to learn everything there is to know about freelancing traditions in Dubai.

Many organizations across all industries are using freelancers' services in Dubai, making it a hub for them. The UAE government fully supports your desire to go it alone, and the procedure of obtaining a valid freelancing license has been simplified. Most free zone authorities in the UAE issue freelancer permit licenses, and having your license from a free zone might be advantageous. You'll need to obtain a trade license from a designated licensing body once you've decided on an activity that fits your professional experience.

Freelance License Abu Dhabi

TECOM was hardly the first government agency to embrace the freelance model. It was the first to market it substantially.

Before 2018, another company licencing authority in Abu Dhabi had a freelance category for quite some time. It's known as twofour54. It's a creative professionals' hotspot in Abu Dhabi.

Twofour54 routinely runs promotional campaigns for freelancers, giving a free license in exchange for only paying for the visa, Emirates ID, and health insurance.

There are now around 500 freelancers associated with twofour54. This authority's standards are slightly more stringent than those of the others that give freelance permits, but it is still the only one that does so.

Freelancer License Ajman Free Zone

For freelancers, Ajman Free Zone has created two packages: Pioneer and Freelance. They are both built for a single owner who can choose from a variety of professions such as IT, education, design, management consulting, beauty and personal care, media consulting, and studies.

The Pioneer package is aimed for people between the ages of 20 and 30, but the Freelance package is suitable for anyone.

The license you receive will appear to be a standard corporate license from this free zone, with just the bottom noting that it is a pioneer or freelance setup. With this setup, you will also be eligible for a three-year Investor visa.

Freelancer License Umm Al Quwain Free Zone

The Umm AL Quwain free zone offers a freelance license with a wide range of activities as well as a two-year residency visa.

The following are some fun activities:

  • Musician
  • Wardrobe
  • Specialist
  • Speech-Language
  • Pathologist Furniture
  • Designer
  • Composer

Umm Al Quwain composer Umm Al Quwain has one of the simplest setup methods and requirements.

Fujairah Free Zone Creative City Freelancing License

A package dubbed "Freelancer firm" is available in the Creative City free zone. This bundle does not include a single-person freelance permit. It's simply the name of a standard commercial business setup package that qualifies for three residence visas.

In other words, in this context, the term "freelancer company" refers to a full-fledged package.

Benefits of a freelancer license

In Dubai, having a freelance permit and visa has various advantages. For starters, it gives you the freedom to work for a variety of companies. If you want to work in any of the above-mentioned fields but don't want to work a 9-to-5 job, becoming a freelancer in Dubai may be the ideal option.

Furthermore, the low cost of a freelance visa in Dubai allows you to charge much lower rates for your services. You can also sponsor family members to come and live with you in Dubai if you have a freelancing visa. However, keep in mind that your freelance authorization and visa do not allow you to sponsor staff.

  • The freelancer license eliminates the need for your company to hire full-time employees or to hire services that are only needed for a limited time.
  • To receive a license, no office or Tawtheeq is required.
  • Expert experts will be able to obtain work permits without the need for company sponsorship with the help of a freelancer license.
  • The bearer of a freelance license might sponsor his or her family members.
  • The development of freelancer licenses has increased the income of many sectors such as retirees, housewives, students, and so on.
  • The ability to work from home or any other allowed location will be provided by the freelance license.

Documents Required for Obtaining a Freelance License in the United Arab Emirates

  • Application for a freelancing license has been completed.
  • a copy of your company's business plan
  • a duplicate of your passport
  • Employers' signatures on a letter of recommendation.
  • Your curriculum vitae and original certificates of qualification.
  • The sponsor must sign a NOC in order to switch the residence visa to a freelancing visa and receive a freelance permission.
  • The bank will issue you a good-standing certificate if you have a solid banking history.
  • A portfolio of your work, as well as any samples of work that demonstrate your ability to freelance in the declared business activity.

How to Apply for a Freelance License in UAE?

To get a license and start a freelance business in UAE, follow these procedures –

Obtaining a permit

You can either apply for a freelance license directly via the Department of Economic Development (DED) or through a free zone. Despite the fact that both methods of obtaining a permit are very simple, the free zone visa is regarded to be more convenient. If you are experienced, you can draught the application yourself, or you can seek expert guidance. The best part is that you don't need an established office place to work from. As a freelancer, you can work from anywhere.

Obtaining a corporate bank account

Working as a freelancer makes it simple to open an account with any corporate bank. In the United Arab Emirates, there are numerous corporate banks from which to choose and open an account. If you have a freelancing permission in a free zone, it will be significantly easier to get a bank account.

There is no financial analysis of the company.

Despite the fact that freelancing is a business, the good news is that freelancers are not subject to official audits or assessments. They are not required to submit any financial information from the office. Even while having your own bookkeeping offers numerous advantages of its own. This provides you yet additional reason to go freelance.

Possibility of expanding your company

Keep freelancing sometimes, and if you have a thriving business, you may wish to grow it and form a company. If you've graduated to a larger market, you'll have more opportunities, such as obtaining numerous visas. In addition, if you expand your business in a free zone, you won't need any share capital.

Ease of Settlement

Once your freelance business is established and you have a consistent income, you can sponsor your relatives and family members and provide them with a good life in the UAE. If you're upgrading to a commercial setup, you can also sponsor workers this way. You can easily sponsor others once you earn more than a certain amount.

The process for Getting Freelancing License in Freezones are as follows-

  • Apply for a freelance license and/or a freelance visa with the applicable free zone authorities where you plan to work.
  • Submit an interim approval application, along with the business plan, a copy of your passport, and a reference letter.
  • If preliminary clearance is granted, the local free zone authority will send you a customer confirmation letter.
  • A portfolio of your work, as well as any samples of work that demonstrate your ability to freelance in the declared business activity.
  • Sign this letter of confirmation and submit it with the other documents listed above for final approval.
  • Make all of the necessary payments, including the freelance permission fee, employment visa sponsorship cost, and the first instalment for rent or office space (which may or may not be required), as well as the deposit (if applicable).
  • Sign the free zone sponsorship agreement and pick up your freelance permission and visa at the same time.
  • You will be given a "Flexi desk" and business facilities within the free zone once you have obtained all of the necessary certificates and approvals to start a freelance business in the UAE.

Within 7-10 working days, the license will be issued.

Other Factors to Consider When Obtaining a Freelance Trade License in Dubai

  • You should be aware that you cannot receive a license for the same job from both the mainland and offshore jurisdictions when applying for a freelance license.
  • You must apply to any of the free zone authorities that allow freelancers to obtain a license.
  • If you are on your spouse's visa and are sponsored by your husband or wife, you must obtain a Non-Objection Certificate (NOC) from your sponsor in order to obtain a freelance license. The same is true if you work full-time in Dubai and are sponsored by your employer.
  • Freelancing does not require having a physical office, but free zones do offer Flexi-desk workplaces for small firms.
  • In Dubai, freelancers are not required to produce official accounts or undergo an audit.
  • You can apply for the license on your own, but it is recommended that you get assistance from UAE business setup services to make the process go more smoothly.

Is Freelancing Legal in the United Arab Emirates?

The vast majority of free zone experts in the UAE issue freelance permit licenses. After selecting the step based on your expert basis, you can obtain the license from the expert of your choice.

Even if the present visa is not revoked, occupants can be the business's owners. By providing the NOC letter from the support, an individual on spouse sponsorship or a business visa can become an investor in the corporation.

Physical office space is not required for the freelance permit. However, many free zones provide a flexi work area office for independent businesses, allowing the proprietor to come to the office and employ services such as mail, secretary, and conference rooms, among others.

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In the United Arab Emirates, citizens, residents, and non-residents can apply for freelance licenses. The change intends to increase job prospects in the UAE and diversify the capital's economic sector. Freelancers can now engage in 48 different sorts of business under the new license rules.
The application process is quick, and the license is normally issued in a matter of days. You will receive an email including a scanned copy of the original license. You can immediately begin operating your consulting business after receiving a copy of the license
In Dubai, having a freelance permit and visa has various advantages. For starters, it gives you the freedom to work for a variety of companies. If you want to work in any of the above-mentioned fields but don't want to work a 9-to-5 job, becoming a freelancer in Dubai may be the ideal option.
The Freelancer License allows firms to draw into the local market's experience and skills while also allowing employees to work remotely from allowed areas. Applicants do not have to rent office space and can apply for resident visas for themselves and their families.
A residency visa and work permit are required to work as a freelancer in Dubai, which can be obtained from a free zone such as Dubai Media City, Dubai Studio City, Dubai Production City, Dubai Knowledge Park, Dubai Design District, or Fujairah Creative City. Every year, the license must be renewed.
Yes. Your investor visa allows you to create a personal bank account. You will be able to open a corporate bank account for the Abu Dhabi Freelancer license, but you will need to transfer your visa to the Abu Dhabi Freelancer license and apply for an investor visa under this license in order to do so.
Yes, you can still apply for a Freelance permit, but you'll need a NOC letter from your boss. When your employment visa expires (or is cancelled), you must apply for the Investor visa through the Freelancer license. If you want to open a Corporate Bank account, you'll need to apply for an Investor visa through the Freelancer license.
Yes, all you need is a letter of authorization from your sponsor and/or company.
You can work for that company as an independent contractor and from its free zone headquarters.
No. As a freelancer, we don't need you to do an annual audit of your financial statements. It's also a good idea to preserve accurate records in case the situation changes in the future
If you are sponsored and employed by another company and decide to quit in order to apply for the freelance permit, the company must produce a release letter of no objection (NOC) enabling you to apply. If you have already cancelled your visa, you will only need the visa cancellation page and not the NOC. If your spouse or parent is sponsoring you to live in the UAE, all you need is a letter of no objection (NOC) from them. It is not necessary for you to modify your visa status.
No, your freelance permit does not allow you to hire or sponsor staff.
Yes! You can apply for a resident visa for your dependents via axs after your visa has been stamped (this excludes residence visas for domestic workers which needs to be applied for outside of the axs).
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