The company you’re employed with will sort out your visa and will usually help your spouse too if they do not have a job out here. But if not, you’ll need to follow this lengthy procedure with Department of Naturalization and Residency Dubai (DNRD) :
1 Get a salary certificate (if you work for a free zone company) or your labour contract (for other companies).
2 Get a copy of your spouse’s passport along with a passport photograph (make sure it has a white background).
3 Make a copy of your marriage certificate – this needs to be attested by the UAE embassy at the country it was issued in, and attested again by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs (04 404 0001) for Dhs200.
4 Pick up a sponsorship application form for about Dhs320 from one of the typing centres right outside the DNRD at the Trade Centre Road, near Bur Dubai Police Station (04 398 0000), and fill it out.
5 Take all these documents back to the DNRD in order to get an ‘entry permit’ for your spouse. You’ll get an entry permit within a few hours, but you have to send a copy to your spouse and have the original deposited at the Dubai Airport.
6 When your spouse arrives in the country, they’ll have to present the entry permit copy at the visa counter at the airport, and collect the original permit in return. It has to be shown to the Immigration Officer, who will stamp it with your entry date.
7 They then have 60 days to complete the residence process with a medical test from a selected government clinic that involves both a blood test and a chest x-ray to rule out tuberculosis and HIV. This can cost anywhere between Dhs350 to Dhs750 depending on how quickly you need the results, though it usually takes no longer than a week.
8 Collect the medical report from the hospital and, together with the original entry permit and your spouse’s original valid passport and two passport photographs, head back to the DNRD to get a three year residence visa stamped. You’ll be able to get the passport back the same day.
9 The entire process will set you back approx Dhs1,500.
Time Out tip: It's best to arrange all this before your spouse moves over here, as if If they are already in the country, you’ll need to shell out Dhs1,200 on top of the other charges in order to convert their existing visit visa into a residence visa.