Professional License

Professional license in the UAE mainland is issued to service providers, professionals, skilled laborers, management consultants, etc. Normally, you must have the required qualifications to get a professional license and manage any professional organization. Though you can retain 100% ownership in your business, it still needs a Local service agent who, however, won’t possess any shares in your business or get in the way of your company activities. The agent Kiltons provides act as a representative for your company for the services of visas, work permits, and license renewals, etc.

Procedures to obtain a Professional License

Trade Name Reservation


Trade name reservation at the Department of Economic Development (DED).

Initial Approval

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Take Initial approval from the Department of Economic Development (DED)by submitting passport copy and emirate Id of the UAE national, as well as the passport copy and visa copy of the foreign investor (Resident visa holder requires an NOC from the sponsor)

Memorandum Of Association


Obtain Civil company agreement notarized by UAE court.

Tenancy Contract


Registering Office/Shop Tenancy contract at Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA)



  • Inspection of the company premises by the DED
  • Make a Memorandum of Association (MOA) with the Sponsor and submit to DED
  • Submit the MOA and the License application at DED along with the required legal documents and the tenancy contract.
  • Trade License

Ministry of Interior


Registration in Ministry of Interior (Immigration).

Ministry of Labor

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Registration in Ministry of Labor.

Type of Professional License

UAE nationals and people from Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) can set up Sole Proprietorship in the U.A.E, in which he/she can own the complete shares and profit of the company. However, any nationality can have sole proprietorship under professional company set-up, where as only UAE and GCC nationals can possess total share of Industrial or commercial companies. However, in professional-type sole proprietorship foreign investors should appoint a Local Service Agent to represent their company in order to carry out the official procedures.

Civil business Companies are established to carry out professional activities in the UAE mainland. Civil company is an association in which one or more persons legally consent to practice a particular profession. Expat investors who are qualified can set up a civil firm and own 100% of the share, provided that a UAE national was appointed as a Local Service Agent. Yet, this agent will not have any involvement in the business activities, and the business owner only have to pay a lump sum or a very small percent of the business turnover for the agent’s service.

Limited Liability Company can be formed by at least two shareholders, the number of which can be increased up to fifty people at the most. In LLC formation, 51% of shares should be owned by UAE nationals and the remaining 49% goes to foreign share holders. Though the UAE national sponsor owns the majority of the share in documents, his/her presence is only for the namesake. There won’t be any interference from the sponsor in the day-to-day activities of the company. In reality, the foreign investor only has to pay an insignificant amount to the sponsor, and there will be valid legal documentations as well to ensure the interests of the investor.