company-blog

Establishing a Company in Dubai

The growth of Dubai over the last 15 years as an economic hub has been prolific.  Whether wishing to establish a branch of an existing business to utilize the strategic geographical location or looking to start a new venture in the region, setting up a company in Dubai can take as little as one working week.

To simplify the process, there are a number of steps to be considered and prepared for to make it as smooth as possible.

  • The business type and activity will determine which category of business license will be required and should be reflected in the trading name selected.
  • The structure and type of license may also be determined by th business activity your business will cover. Some businesses, Law for example cannot be licensed as a sole proprietor.
  • As an expat, if you wish to have 100% ownership of the company, it will need to be formed in one of the Freezone authorities which will in turn have restrictions on where and who you can conduct business with.
  • To establish a license and carry out business in mainland Dubai, you will need to apply for a trade license from the Dubai Economic Department. This license will require you to have a local partner or sponsor who, by law, must hold a minimum of 51% ownership of the company.
  • The particulars of how the company will operate in terms of profit and loss will be determined in the legal documentation (Memorandum of Association). Speak to your legal advisor to ensure your documentation adequately protects your interest in the business.
court

When to pursue a case in the Court!

If you have any dispute against you such as property disputes then you have to hire a lawyer, take it to the court and fight for your rights. The question may arise in your mind about the investment you will make and the time you will spend, is it worth it?

Whatever the situation is the law firm which possesses experienced lawyers can predict or evaluate the outcome, and for that reason, you need to make the relationship between the plaintiff and the client excellent.
There are few things you need to consider for the dispute,

a- Law to be applied
b- Jurisdiction of the local courts
c- Evidences

Finally, we should evaluate the chances of execution of judgment in our favour and the reward. This will all depend on,

a- Is it a person or an independent body (a company or an establishment)?
b- Does that person or independent body has enough assets to be taken over in case if he refuses to execute the judgment
c- What is the type of independent body, is it a company or an establishment? And what are its types

cheque-blog

Cheques

There has been much discussion relating to the issue of cheques in the UAE, particularly when related to security cheques. Historically, this has been a bone of contention for many where security cheques have been banked where the drawer would contest that it was done so correctly. A cheque can be made ‘conditional’ meaning specific requirements should be met before it can be encashed. If the drawer fails to fulfill any of the required conditions then he or she won’t be able to encash the cheque (note of caution, it will be valid after its due date). Below are some points you should know about cheques,

1- According to new rules, cheques are valid for 3 months from the date of issue.

2- The period to register a ‘bounced’ cheque complaint can be upto 5 years beginning from the day the drawer issued it to the beneficiary.

3- If the holder of the account signs his cheque and leaves it blank for the amount to be drawn and the due date to be entered, they are tacitly authorizing the beneficiary to fill those details in as required.

4- The person signing a company cheque is legally responsible for its validity even after he or she leaves the company.

5- Alteration of cheques is strictly forbidden by banks to avoid fraud.

6- In the event not enough funds are available in the account for the amount of an issued cheque, a request can be made to pay the remaining partial amount to the beneficiary

7- The cheque, if bounced can be considered a criminal act. This includes insufficient funds in the account, deliberately writing the cheque in such a way as to make it invalid, making an order to the bank not to make a payment or issuing a cheque from a closed account.

8- If you lose any of your cheques, you should use the stop payment facility offered by the banks to avoid issues arising from anyone misusing them.

property-blog

Laws relating to Property in UAE

The relaxation of the law allowing expats to purchase property and resulting boom in property demand and prices in the mid ‘noughties’ was shortly followed by the infamous 2008 collapse of the market. The subsequent cautious recovery highlights the complexity of UAE property law and the requirement to exercise buyer caution more widely appreciated.

According to UAE law, you may buy a property from a developer ‘off-plan’ by paying a 10% to 15% down payment with the balance payable over a period determined either by milestones in development or even, in some cases after the completion and handover of the project. It is imperative you ensure that the developer you are committing to is registered with the Dubai Land Department and that any payments are made to an escrow bank account.

Understanding the documentation involved and what rights and protection it offers all parties varies depending on the quality of that documentation. Make sure you fully understand the commitment and expectations before signing these documents.

If you choose to employ the assistance of a broker in making a purchase (or indeed if one is forced upon you by the developer), you will need to clarify that they are registered with RERA. You can do this by asking to see their ID card or simply visit the Land Department for verification.

Another important document in a property transaction is the Sale and Purchase Agreement which will form the ‘contract’ of your commitment to purchase as well as the parameters and commitment for the developer to build and deliver the project.

Ensure that the agreement clearly outlines and determines the date for completion of the project, actual milestones to be reached to trigger any payments and the penalties and exit clauses if these are not met. You will also need to understand which court is authorized to hear any dispute should future problems arise.
As purchasing a property is one of life’s ‘major’ purchases, please engage the assistance of professional legal counsel to protect your investment.

divorce-blog

After Effects of Divorce in UAE

There is no escape from the after effects of a divorce in UAE. The rules and laws for divorce in your home country can apply here in the UAE according to Article 1 of ‘UAE Personal Status Law’ (commonly known as ‘Shariah Law’).

As an expat you may be unclear of many areas of the law, particularly in relation to divorce and court proceeding in the UAE. There may also be complications relating to claiming legal rights for the husband, the wife and the children.

As a Muslim man you can divorce your wife by saying ‘I divorce you’ three times and you will be separated according to the UAE law. However, women cannot do the same. There are provisions to allow a Muslim woman to divorce her husband for incidences such as domestic violence or inability or failure to provide financial support. Another method for a woman to divorce from her husband is Khula. It should be remembered however that if following this path, she will lose the dowry (the money to be paid by her husband for releasing her from the marriage).

How to file for divorce proceedings? This will depend on the specific details of the case. If, for example, a woman is earning money to support the family and has family assets in her name, Dubai court could be the most beneficial place to file if the intention is not to pay money to her husband. This path would also help in ensuring she retains custody of the children and she keep all her assets in her name.

UK courts can be more beneficial if a husband was earning to support the family, you have joint assets and if you need to consider pension earnings now or in the future.

In reality, there isn’t one solution that applies to all cases and it is imperative that you seek professional guidance that is tailored for your specific circumstances.

power

Power of Attorney UAE

Power of Attorney is the written letter which gives authority or power from one person or company to another to act on their behalf. This transfer of power is usually required when handling issues that are legal, finance or property related.

Due to the composition of the UAE population and the high percentage of expats, it is common for actions or transactions to take place in the absence of one or more parties. This could be due to working locations changing or even after a person has left the UAE.

For any legal matters in the UAE, a Power of Attorney must be given to a law office before they are permitted to represent or act on a client’s behalf. The Power of Attorney needs to be signed by the resident or visitor in front of the Notary Public whilst producing an Emirates ID or Passport.

If power of attorney is issued in another country then it needs to be stamped, attested and legalized by the ministry of foreign affairs and the UAE embassy in the country of issue. The document will need to be translated into Arabic prior to being stamped,attested and legalized in UAE to become effective.

There are generally two the types of power of attorney,
a- General
Full authority to handle all the affairs of an individual or institution is known as ‘general power of attorney’
b- Specific
Where the authority is limited to specified actions that can be carried out, this is known as ‘specific power of attorney’.

Misuse of a Power of Attorney is considered a serious crime in the UAE and can lead to serious charges being brought against the offender.

drugs-law

Drug Laws in UAE

UAE law relating to drugs has undergone significant change, the most notable factor being a slight reduction in punishment for some first-time offenders. The options to commit the accused to a rehabilitation center can be sought providing the offender has good counsel to represent their case with other possible judgments including fines and community service.

Of course, receiving a jail sentence remains a very real possibility although a move towards sentences of 2 years rather than 4 appears to be the norm.

It is prudent to remember that, despite these changes, UAE law is very strict when it comes to drugs, and is considered a criminal act. This extends to prescription drugs and is not limited to recreational ones. Be sure to check that any medication you have been prescribed in your home country is not a banned substance in the UAE and always keep your prescription to hand.

law-firm-in-uae

One Day Court Dubai

A new and innovative initiative is currently being implemented by all police stations in Dubai following approval of Penal Order Law No. 1 of 2017 by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Tuesday 7 March 2017.

Shaikh Mohammad ordered the implementation of the ‘One Day Misdemeanour Court’ initiative in every police station starting from Wednesday 8 March 2017 in a meeting held at the head office of the Dubai Executive Council at Emirates Towers.

According to multiple sources and reports, it is expected to cut waiting time in Dubai Courts by 60 per cent, drastically speeding up delivery of verdicts and saving the government around 40 million dirhams a year in costs.

The aim is to shorten the time required in investigation and prosecution and deliver a verdict in two phases in less than 24 hours.

According to a report in Gulf News, Shaikh Mohammad stressed that the UAE is a state of institutions and law, possessing a distinguished judicial system that is based on up-to-date mechanisms and systems, and is committed to the independence of all its judicial and security bodies.

He said that this will ensure justice for individuals in a record time without impacting the integrity of law.

“The UAE possesses a judicial system that is on a par with global standards that ensures the rights of society, both individuals and organisations, and effectively contributes to achieving the desired goals of strategic plans that sustain the UAE’s competitiveness.

“We have great trust in the judicial body to render highly efficient quick services while fully preserving the sovereignty of law. This assists us in achieving our goals to make procedures faster and easier to complete for people in cases pertaining to minor crimes,” said Shaikh Mohammad.

The project of One Day Court was trialled as early as 2015 involving the Traffic Department and the Residency and Foreigners’ Affairs at Al Muraqqabat police station.

Lawyer and senior Partner of Hassan Al Reyami Advocates and Legal Consultants, Dr Naser Meheyedin welcomes and supports the initiative saying:

“Dubai is a vibrant and thriving business hub where time can be a valuable and incredibly important factor. The high number of cases currently in the court system does create time issues in getting into the case and obtaining judgement and moving misdemeanour cases into a swift and simple system will have a double impact. Speeding up the process for those cases dealt with in the one day court will be self-evident but will also relieve pressure from the main court system for the other types of cases allowing that process the opportunity to move more quickly as well.

Reducing the time waiting for court hearings will be a great relief for those detained pending them as it follows they will not be required to be detained for as long. This will be advantageous for not only the accused but also the detention accommodation and staff as well.”

There are currently Twenty-one types of caseincluded in 24 hour system that will be heard in the Police Station with the prosecution and court on site.

This offers the facility for certain cases to be handled directly by the Public Prosecution, without referring them to the court through a penal order and by imposing a fine in some of the minor cases.

Types of cases to be handled
By the General Directorate of Residency:
Illegal entry into the country
Returning after deportation
Staying in the country illegally
Working after a ban
Absconding

By the police station:
Possession of alcoholic beverages
Consuming alcoholic beverages
Giving a cheque with malicious intent
Signing on the back side of the cheque (without sufficient funds)
Failure to pay due fees
Begging
Illegal vendors

By the Traffic Prosecution:
Involvement in an accident that injured someone
Wrecking properties
Drinking and driving
Attempting to dive under the influence
Possessing alcoholic beverages illegally
Driving a car without a licence