As per the government’s new policy, the dependent fee is being collected from the expats residing in the Kingdom. The dependent fee came into practice since 1st July 2017. According to the policy, expats residing in the Kingdom ought to pay SR 100 per dependent every month. Simply speaking a foreigner who lives in Saudi Arabia has to pay SR 1200 per dependent this year. The fee shall rise by SR 100 every year till 2020. So, next year expats shall be paying SR 200 per dependent per month. Recommended: Procedure to pay Dependent’s Fee for Iqama Renewal[irp]
Looks like a great deal. Many expats are worried about it. However, many Saudi companies have announced that the burden of the fee shall be borne by the company. These companies have relieved their foreign workers and told them that the dependent fee shall be completely borne by the company. While some companies have agreed to partly share the burden. These companies will be paying half the fee and half of it would be deducted from the salary of the employee. Not bad though! These companies are sharing their worker's burden to establish better relations and retain the workers.
The lawyers and legal experts commented that there are certain responsibilities of the employer. He is the one who has to bear certain expenses of the employee. These include the recruitment fee, Iqama fee, and iqama renewal fee; work permit fee and work permit renewal fee, service transfer fee, and visa (exit and entry) fee. These fees are levied on the employer in accordance with the employment contract and the labor laws of Saudi Arabia.
What about the dependent fee? Is that the responsibility of the employer? What about those expats who are worried about the dependent fee as their companies have not made any such announcements? Is there any legal way for them to claim payment of a fee by their employers? Well, Legal experts are here with some great news. According to them, the dependent fee shall be paid by the employer if the employment contract demands so.
Lawyer Khaled Al-Saadoun, who is a legal consultant and a specialist in labor affairs has briefed on the matter. So, recheck your employment contracts and see if any of these conditions existed;
Your employer is ought to pay the dependent fee if he allowed you to bring your family to the Kingdom. If this is written in the contract, you can demand the dependent fee from the employer.
If the employer has insisted you to bring your family to the Kingdom, he shall pay their fees.
If your relations are good with the employer, you can demand full or partial payment of the dependent tax, in the name of special privileges.[irp]
According to Al-Saadoun employer is liable to pay the expat dependent fee only if the employment contract says so. If there are any specific conditions regarding the employee’s dependent mentioned in the contract, the employee has all the rights reserved to claim the fee from employer’s pocket. Is employer liable to pay half or full fee would solely depend on the nature of the contract?