Tuesday 7 October 2014

How do I know what I don't know?

My stress levels are going through the roof right now and I'm not in control of anything.

We are British Expats living in South Africa, relocating to Dubai.

We have to leave SA before our visas expire in January 2015.

I know we have to apply for a residency visa then a work visa and hubby has to provide evidence that he will support me.

This will be done by the company, but we are the ones who have to obtain all the necessary paperwork in relation to our personal move. i know what documentation is required. Several passport photos, chest X-rays to check we are free of TB and blood tests for HIV/AIDS and Leprosy, copies of passports, birth and marriage certificates and qualifications.

And here in lies the problem.

To start the application hubby must have a passport, his was stolen and we are at the mercy of the British Passport Service, the application so far has taken 8 weeks to date, because we didn't know what we needed to ask in regards to additional documentation, which they requested via post (there's a postal strike) so until that arrives we can't make an application for a visa to move to Dubai.

To obtain official copies we need to apply to the UK, which we can do online, however there is a postal strike in SA and from experience of our relocation to South Africa, there are always additional requests for documentation sprung on you and how long will I/we need to be in the UK for to coordinate all the documents?

Can we make the application from South Africa as British Citizens? For example we went into Nedbank today to ask if we can retain our bank accounts when we leave SA? or as I phrased it 'Our visas expire in January, will you automatically close our accounts?' the answer is yes they will close our accounts. We are British in South Africa, If we were South African the first question would have been sufficient, and this is the stuff we don't know. We need the bank account for deposits to be paid back into and I also have to sell the car and need to have the money transferred somewhere.

Our sons passport expires in June 2015, he will need 6 months on it to be included in the visa application, so can he enter Dubai with us under the normal 30 day and then apply for his visa at a later date? Or must we apply for a new passport now? and will it arrive in time for him to come to South Africa in December?

If we have to apply for the visa from the UK, what do we do with the cat and dog? I have a valid passport, can we apply for all the documentation now and then me travel to the UK to collect it all? Will they give me stuff for my hubby? Even if he writes a letter giving me permission?

Will I be allowed back in South Africa so near to the visa expiring without a return trip booked? The same for our youngest son.

We have a phone call tomorrow with the relocation agents in Dubai, I doubt they'll know the answer to most of my questions either because they just won't understand how things work here in SA.

We are British living in South Africa, relocating to Dubai, it does complicate things.

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