The UAE will now be able to enforce UK court rulings

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Courts in the United Arab Emirates have been granted the power to enforce British legal judgments in certain types of cases, in a landmark decree. landmark of the Ministry of Justice of the United Arab Emirates.

The change applies to all court decisions in civil, financial, and non-criminal marriage cases and is in effect. It represents an important step forward in cooperation between the UAE and the UK, longtime partners in trade, diplomacy and defence.

Dubai, the commercial capital of the UAE, has for many years been seen as a “safe haven” for people smuggling money or evading various convictions in other countries, as the UAE will not confiscate numbers. money owed in a UK civil case judgment. This is due to what the UAE describes as a lack of “reciprocity”, as the UK does not normally enforce UAE court rulings.

The new ruling announced on Wednesday would, in principle, make it impossible for people convicted in civil cases in the UK to flee to the UAE and avoid paying their debts.

Some legal experts predict an increase in cases of creditors pursuing repayment from people who have left the UK for the UAE.

“For too long, erroneous husbands or wives unwilling to meet the financial obligations of a divorce ordered by British courts have found safe haven in Dubai,” said Alexandra Tribe, a solicitor. international family at London-based Overseas Vietnamese Law, told Emirati news agency The National.

“This regulatory news has the potential to open up the risk of enforcement of previously unpaid orders, especially considering the substantial UK expats in the UAE,” she said.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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More than 120,000 British nationals live in the UAE according to the British Business Group in Dubai and the United Kingdom. The oil-rich Gulf nation of 10 million has about 90% of its population foreigners and is looking to attract more foreign talent with the help of a series of economic liberalization and economic reforms. recent society.

UK court decisions must be final to be enforced in the UAE and they must not contradict previous decisions of UAE courts, if any, or go against public order or morals. of the UAE, at its discretion.

This change also comes as the UAE works to improve its image in relation to money laundering and illicit financing. The country is known for welcoming investors from all countries and backgrounds, largely without scrutinizing where the money comes from. Russian money flows into Dubaiespecially strengthening its real estate sector, in the months since Moscow launched the war with Ukraine and when the UAE has refrained from imposing Western sanctions on various countries.

The Financial Action Task Force March put the UAE on the “gray list” due to concerns that the Gulf state could not afford to stop illegal financial activities.

The task force said at the time that the UAE was under increased scrutiny due to “strategic deficiencies” in its anti-money laundering efforts. The UAE government responded to the designation, pledging to “work closely with the FATF to quickly remediate identified areas of need for improvement.”

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