In Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Labor, MOL, maintains the record of the iqama professions. MOL strictly observes that expats are working at the same designation. It is illegal and causes penalties and fines to work in a different position except the one mentioned on iqama.
So if it’s different, then it is important to change iqama profession as soon as possible.
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Why Should You Change Iqama Profession?
With the introduction and implementation of Nitaqat, MOL is making sure that every expat is working at the same job as mentioned on the iqama. The rules and laws are strict and the penalties and fines are hard.
MOL teams often raid the workplaces and check the iqama of the workers. As they want to assure that everyone is working legally and accordingly.
Procedure To Change Iqama Profession.
The procedure to change iqama profession is simple. Visit the HR persons (Idariyah) or Kafeel and request for the change of iqama profession. Pay a fee of 1015 riyals and print a copy of the receipt.
HR may ask you to provide the receipt. So give it to them. The rest of the procedure is the responsibility of the Company. If the ministry approves the application, then you will receive a message on your mobile phone. The message will confirm the status of iqama profession change.
Who Is Not Eligible
MOL put certain restrictions on the iqama change profession. A few categories of professions are not eligible. A muqeem – resident having a domestic profession i.e., house driver, maid, farmer, gardener, etc. They can’t change their professions. Furthermore, they can’t apply for a family visa.
What Are The Requirements
The list of requirements is not too long. First of all, the iqama must be valid and not expire very soon. Furthermore, professions have two categories. One, from labor up to the technicians’ professions. This category doesn’t need attested and verified documents.
The second category is for Engineers, doctors, accountants, etc. In this category, the attested and verified degree is required. You will need attestation from Saudi Culture and the Saudi embassy in your country. But before the attestation, you may also need to verify it from your Higher Education Commission and foreign office ( Required for Pakistani Degrees).
You also need to register with Saudi Engineering Council if you are an engineer. And For accountants, you must register with SOCPA. Doctors should register with their respective authorities.
Another important thing is that your degree must match the job you are doing. For example, an engineer must be working as an engineer to successfully change iqama profession. MOL won’t entertain you if you don’t comply with the condition.
Common Rejection Reasons
It is common that MOL doesn’t change the profession due to any reason. And, the reasons can be,
- The iqama profession change was banned by MOL for a specific time period.
- The company is in the red or yellow category of the Nitaqat system.
- Any legal dues payable by you ( For example, an unpaid traffic violation)
- Any legal dues payable by your employer, kafeel
- Insufficient iqama funds in your Absher account.
- Expired Iqama.
- The employee has an huroob status.
- The iqama issuance is still in the process.
- Applying for the professions which are dedicated to Saudi nationals.