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Family Law & protection of assets in UAE

Author: Ibrahim Khouri
by Ibrahim Khouri
Posted: Dec 24, 2020

Marriage, Love, Cohabitation, Break-up, separation, divorce, and division of assets, etc are the realities of life that everyone comes across some way or other way, directly or indirectly. Civilized nations regulate the affairs of individuals and institutions through the appropriate rules and regulations based on multiple socio-cultural backgrounds and ethos prevailing within their jurisdiction. Since the human touch travels beyond the territorial boundaries of nation-states, the laws of one country operate within the domain of another legal system without any issues and conflicts under the harmonious construction of private international law. In effect, the modern states respect and recognize the extra-territorial operation of law within their legal systems for facilitating the better living and cultural standard for all those who are eligible for the benefit of it. In principle, only a few states have recognized the direct application of foreign law in personal status matters.

United Arab Emirates-UAE, a Land of diversity, known for its cultural diaspora in conjunctions with its local traditions has accommodated the citizens of every nation. More recently though Abraham Accord, the doors are open for Israel. This small Arabian land of Zayed has literally given the best possible meaning for Co-exitance and communal harmony. Federal law no. 28 of 2005 applies to the personal affairs of individuals in respect of marriage, divorce, Settlement, and distribution of assets within the UAE.

The recent amendment in the personal status law and criminal law have brought certain changes in the personal status landscape of the United Arab Emirates.

  1. Decriminalization of cohabitation of unmarried couples, consumption of alcohol,
  2. Greater option on the choice of law in respect of divorce and inheritance.
  3. Application of Country law on default in respect of inheritance with certain exemptions in respect of the property.
  4. Leniency towards honor killing is abolished.
  5. Strict punishment for an offense against women and children. Etc...

Despite having living friendly legal systems in respect of the choice of law and asset planning, there are few other options as well available to secure the investment and asset planning through asset protection vehicles such as trust and foundation.

It is very important to have an appropriate legal strategy from expert family lawyers before proceeding with any action. Since there is a choice of law and extraterritorial application of the law, inappropriate action shall result in adverse orders from the courts in different jurisdictions and infeasible executions in different courts wherever the potential jurisdiction lies.

It is strongly recommended to consult expert advocates in Dubai before initiating any action in respect to personal status matters, especially for the ex-pats for whom there is a principal jurisdiction in the country courts.

If you would like to get expert consultation, please call an expert family lawyer or fill up the contact form to arrange an initial consultation to discuss your issue with one of our specialists Family & divorce lawyer.

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Author: Ibrahim Khouri

Ibrahim Khouri

Member since: Sep 02, 2020
Published articles: 4

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