What Are the Penalties For Being Caught Without an Iqama or With an Expired Iqama in Saudi Arabia?

How Much Penalty for Being Caught Without Iqama or With an Expired Iqama in Saudi Arabia?


Living and working in Saudi Arabia as someone from another country comes with important duties. One of the most important things is having a valid Iqama, which is like a permission slip to stay. If you don’t renew it or get caught without it, there can be big problems.

In this article, we’ll talk about the fines and penalties you might face if your Iqama expires or if you lose it. We’ll give you a detailed guide to help you understand what to do in these situations.

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What Happens If Iqama Expired?

Your Iqama is not just a piece of identification; it is your legal permit to reside and work in the Kingdom. The renewal process is paramount, and failure to adhere to it can result in fines and complications.

Does the Fine or Penalty Remain Consistent if you’re Caught With an Expired Iqama or Without Any Iqama in Saudi Arabia?

Certainly, the fines for being caught without an expired Iqama and without any Iqama in Saudi Arabia vary. For the first time, the fine is SR 1,000. If it happens again, the fine goes up, and there’s a chance you might be sent back to your home country. It’s really important to know about these penalties so you can follow the rules correctly.

Iqama Expiry Penalty First-Time:

If caught without a valid Iqama for the first time, the consequences are significant. You may face temporary detention, but recent updates suggest a shift in this policy. According to the Saudi Gazette, there will be no more detention for employees caught without Iqama. Instead, a fine of SR 1,000 may be imposed. You will be allowed to call someone with access to your original Iqama to bring it to the authorities.

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Second-Time Fine if Caught Without Iqama or with Expired Iqama

Repeat offenses indicate a habit of violating the law. If caught for the second time without a valid Iqama, the procedure remains similar to the first offense, with an increased fine of SR 2,000. A warning is issued, emphasizing the seriousness of the violation. Further repetitions may lead to deportation.

How Much Penalty for Expired Iqama Third-Time?

Facing consequences for the third time is a critical situation. You must call your sponsor (Kafeel) along with the original Iqama. A hefty fine of SR 3,000 will be imposed, and the government will initiate deportation proceedings. Gulf News has reported additional measures, including a plan to ban deported expatriates from entering other GCC countries.

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Iqama Under Renewal:

In the past, sponsors provided letters stating that an employee’s Iqama was under renewal, serving as temporary proof. However, with the online Iqama renewal process, such letters are no longer acceptable. Ensuring the renewal is done promptly is essential to prevent any complications.

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Lost Iqama:

Misplacing your Iqama introduces an additional level of complication. If asked for your Iqama, present the recent police report. However, officials may reject reports over a month old. Timeliness is essential in dealing with a lost Iqama.

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Final Thought:

In conclusion, understanding the consequences of an expired or missing Iqama in Saudi Arabia is vital for expatriates. Recent changes in policies, including reduced detention for first-time offenses, reflect an incremental improvement in the system. It is crucial to stay informed, renew your Iqama on time, and follow proper procedures in case of loss. By following these steps, you can successfully overcome potential challenges and maintain a positive experience in the Kingdom.

What happens if Iqama expires?

If your Iqama expires in Saudi Arabia, you face fines starting at SR 1,000 for the first offense, with increasing penalties for subsequent violations. There’s a risk of deportation if the situation persists.

How much is expired Iqama renewal?

The exact renewal cost varies, but fines for letting your Iqama expire start at SR 1,000 for the first offense, with higher penalties and the possibility of deportation for repeated violations. Keeping up with the renewal process is crucial to avoid legal complications.