United Arab Emirates: Does my company medical insurance also cover my dependents?

Natasha Sood, senior partner at Dubai-based law firm Motei and Associates, said: “In Dubai, employers are legally required to provide medical coverage to their employees. The Dubai Health Insurance Act No. 11 of 2013 requires all residents to have a level of health insurance that meets or exceeds the minimum benefits stipulated by the DHA. The responsibility for providing health insurance rests with the employer.

However, when it comes to health insurance for your family, it may or may not be covered by your company according to its policy. The Dubai Health Insurance Act also stipulates that sponsors must provide health insurance for their dependents. A catalog of services released by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) in 2020 advised Dubai residents to check their employment contracts to see if their employer has a contractual obligation to provide workers and their families with medical insurance. DHA also explained that companies are encouraged to cover health insurance for the worker’s dependents.

Therefore, if your family is under your sponsorship, you are legally required to apply for health insurance for them.

“In Dubai, sponsors are required to provide private health insurance for their dependents,” Sood said.

In Abu Dhabi, Article 5 of the “Law No. (23) of 2005 concerning Health Insurance in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and Regulations thereunder”, an employer is required to provide medical insurance to his employee and his family. However, the health insurance scope covers a spouse and three children up to the age of 18, according to Mohammed El Dakamawy, attorney at Dr. Mahmood Hussain Advocates and Legal Consultancy LLC.

“By law, an employer is required to take out medical insurance for its employees and their families, which is limited to one spouse and three children,” El Dakamawy said.

The Northern Emirates, which includes Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, has no local legislation requiring employers to provide medical insurance for their employees. Thus, in terms of health insurance for employees and their families, the practice is based on the policy of each company.

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