Saturday, 3 May 2014

Transfer of Sponsorship (Naqal Kafala) without Approval of Kafeel

Iqama transfer without consent of Sponsor was a dream for millions of expatriates living in Saudi Arabia. (Conditions under which sponsorship can be transferred without consent of Kafeel have been explained below). It seems that this dream is going to come true. Different newspapers have reported that Ministry of Labor has started transferring sponsorship without consent or permission of sponsor under few conditions. Shoura is considering giving more rights to the employees by easing out the procedure to transfer sponsorship from the employers who exploit employees.

However, according to the rule, only those employees are able to get this transfer whose contract with the current sponsor has completed and there is no clause in the contract barring them to work in Saudi Arabia for X number of years. This is a real positive change which has brought a lot of positivity in Saudi Labor Market. Expatriates are able to go for better opportunities and employers are taking care of their employees in a better way due to competition in the market. It should be noted that according to current rules, Iqama transfer can be made without consent and approval of the current sponsor in following 6 conditions.

  1. If current Kafeel is in Red or Yellow Nitaqat Category, you don’t even need to go to labor court. Iqama can be transferred without any problem. I have explained the procedure in this article. "Process of Transferring Sponsorship if Kafeel is Red"
  2. If Sponsor does not provide Iqama to the employee even after completing three months of arrival in Saudi Arabia and his visa has expired, he can take transfer of sponsorship without consent of Kafeel. However, in this case he will have to contact to the labor office.
  3. If sponsor / Kafeel of a newcomer to Saudi Arabia is in red or yellow Nitaqat Category, sponsorship can be transferred without permission of Kafeel. However, you may have to contact labor office in this regard. (Arab News)
  4. If your Iqama is expired at least one month ago and Kafeel has not renewed it. You can go to Labor office and get it transferred to new employer even without consent of Kafeel. (Arab News)
  5. Employees of companies that fail to implement the Labor Ministry’s wage protection law would be allowed to transfer their services to other firms, without the previous employer’s permission. (Arab News)
  6. If you have not been paid salaries from over 3 months, you can transfer your sponsorship to new employer without approval of your current sponsor. (Arab News)
It is important to mention here that in any of the 4 following conditions, transfer of sponsorship without approval of Kafeel would not be possible.
  1. If your passport has expired
  2. If you have a legal exit re-entry or final exit visa
  3. If you or your new employer has unpaid traffic violation fine. Recommended: Check Traffic Violation under your Iqama
  4. In case when the Ministry of labor does not give you permission to transfer your sponsorship, you can’t change your sponsor without approval.
Transfer of Sponsorship (NaqalKafala)
  1. Procedure to transfer sponsorship from employer to be dependent
  2. Procedure to Transfer Family Members under your Sponsorship after the death of Father
  3. Transferring Sponsorship in Saudi Arabia
  4. Transferring Sponsorship if Kafeel is in Red Nitaqat Category
  5. Procedure to Transfer the Dependent’s Sponsorship to Employer


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. I have given the link for source of information! Saudi Gazette is a well known newspaper of Saudi Arabia.

  2. Dear sir
    As salam molikum
    I have problem my IQUMA transfer.
    My IQUMA states of plumber. But my sponsor have license of farmer. Now any solicitation give me. How can I change my sponsor.

    1. Let me elaborate the problem for better clarification. Your intended employer is a farmer who does not have any seat for plumber in the legal books. Same problem could arise if your profession was Barber and you wanted to go to a cement company. What is the use of barber in cement company?

      Now the only solution is to change the profession under your current Kafeel and then go for transfer. If you need any help to change profession, have a look at this article.

  3. Brother,
    really m hapi while see this good news,when it will going to happen...???

  4. I read in Arab news that transfer of iqama without sponsors consent for delay in salary for more than 3 months is applicable if there is banker transfer of salary and for more then 1000 employees this true or have I got it wrong. I haven't got salary for more then 3 months. Can you tell me if its possible to opt for transfer my company is less than 100 employees and pay in cash not bank after signing a receipt.

    1. In Arab News it was written that this law is proposed. No decision has been taken by the Shoura upon it up to now. I do not think it is going to be effective here.

    2. Thank you Steve for your reply, so does that mean that I can opt for transfer without sponsors consent by the help of labour court. Please reply...

    3. Brother, I have written above that this law is only proposed. It means this is not an approved law till now. So, there is no such law in Saudi Arabia. You cannot seek help of labor court in this regard.

  5. Dear brother, I would like to share with you me problem, my current sponsor give me very small salary, Recently i have found a company's offer to join them but my sponsor don't want to release me. For your information, I transferred my sponsorship under this company long time ago (since 1999), and I am from Bangladesh. Could you please advice me. Thanks.

    1. Matter of sponsorship transfer is between you and your Kafeel. If he is not giving you transfer, you can ask him to process Exit visa and ask new employer to issue a visa for you.



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