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Law No. (2) of 2019 Amending Some Provisions of Law No. (21) of 2015 Concerning Judicial Fees in Dubai Courts.

January 21, 2020

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister, has issued, in his capacity as Ruler of Dubai, Law No. 21 of 2015 regarding the new fees of the Dubai Courts. The new law, in its first article, replaced the provisions of Articles (8), (14) and (35) of the original law with other provisions relating to non-payment of fees and the estimated value of the case, in addition to the relative fees for implementation as follows: Not subject to fees: According to the amended Article (8), some categories, claims, appeals and applications are not subject to the fees prescribed by the original law, i.e. claims, appeals or applications filed by federal or local governmental authorities in the emirate or any of the emirates of the country, claims related to endowments, donations and wills for charitable works, and charitable associations, as well as claims filed by shareholders against the Board of Directors of a public shareholding company or its executive management are not subject to fees, whenever the percentage of the company’s claimants’ share does not exceed (10%) of its total shares. Furthermore, the fees prescribed by the original law shall not be subject to appeals against alimony judgments, deposit by Trustee in Bankruptcy,  bidder’s deposit of the price of the property, and what  the federal and local governmental authorities deposit on behalf of the concerned parties. Applications for publicity or proof of Islam, ratification of a social welfare application, and requests for death and heredity are not subject to the fee. Estimated Value According to the amended Article (14), claims filed before the courts of first instance, civil suits of a criminal case and claims arising out of commercial business of more than 500,000 dirhams, excluding personal status lawsuits, shall be charged a fee of (6%) of the claim value. The amount of this fee shall be from a minimum of AED500 but not more than AED20,000 dirhams if the claim value does not exceed AED500,000; AED30,000  if the claim value ranges between AED500,001 to AED1,000,000; and AED40,000 if the claim value is over AED1,000,000. The same article stipulates that the lawsuits arising from commercial business brought before the courts of first instance which are worth AED500,000 or less shall be charged 6% of the claim value provided that the amount of this fee shall not be less than AED500 and not more than AED20,000, and this fee of (6%) of the claim value shall be collected from the claimant upon registering the claim. The amount of this fee shall not be less than AED 500 and not more than AED5000. This amendment is in favor of a claimant who filed a commercial lawsuit with a claim of no more than AED500,000 to pay court fees upon filing a suit with a maximum of AED5,000 instead of AED20,000 as provided for under the original law prior to this amendment. In addition, it has been stipulated in this Article that this fee paid by the claimant shall be added to the expenses of the adjudged lawsuit and shall be collected from the convicted person by a final judgment […]

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Ensuring Validity of Arbitration Agreements in the UAE

January 21, 2020

Recognizing the importance and the growing preference for arbitration, authorities promulgated Federal Law No. (6) of 2018, otherwise known as the UAE Arbitration Law. The UAE Arbitration Law repealed Articles 203 to 218 of Federal Law No. (11) of 1992 or the UAE Code of Civil Procedures. The law solidifies arbitration’s role as a preferred mode of dispute resolution and has provided better guidance for arbitration in the UAE. Arbitration, as an alternative dispute resolution, is an extraordinary remedy. It allows the parties to confer jurisdiction on the settlement of their disputes to an arbitral tribunal, and in the process, take away the jurisdiction from the regular courts. As an extraordinary remedy, the choice of arbitration has not always been given efficacy in the past due to various reasons. The most notable of which are (1) the dispute concerns a matter of public policy, (2) the lack of capacity of the signatory, and (3) defective arbitration agreement. It is also interesting to note that, in the past, not being able to plead the existence of an arbitration clause at the first hearing is treated by the Courts as a waiver of the arbitration agreement. An arbitration agreement is defined in Article 1 of the UAE Arbitration Law as the agreement of the parties to refer a matter to arbitration, whether such agreement is made before or after the dispute arises. It can be contained in a particular contract in respect of all or some disputes that may arise between the parties, by a separate agreement, or through an explicit referral considering such clause as a part of the contract. As arbitration is largely by consent, an arbitration agreement can be entered into even after a dispute arises and even if a claim is already before the courts. In order to give effect to the choice of arbitration as an alternative dispute resolution, the following points should be considered in entering into an arbitration agreement: The dispute should be a matter where composition or settlement is allowed, and Article 4(2) of the UAE Arbitration Law stipulates that arbitration will not be permitted on matters that are non-conciliatory. Thus, issues concerning public policy cannot be submitted for arbitration. For example, employment issues and criminal matters are not arbitrable. 2. The arbitration agreement should be entered into by a natural person only who enjoys the capacity to dispose of rights or the representative of a juristic person authorized to agree on arbitration. There are two aspects of capacity contemplated in this requirement of the law. First, the person signing must have the capacity to contract based on the law governing such person’s capacity. For example, in the UAE, the capacity to contract without need of guardian or court order for locals is when they reached the age of 21 (lunar years). Hence, an Emirati below the age of 21, by himself, does not have the capacity to sign an arbitration agreement. If the party entering into the arbitration agreement is from the United Kingdom, UK laws will determine whether he has the capacity to enter into an arbitration agreement. Article 53 (1)(b) of […]

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Clarifications on the Protection Decree Concerning Domestic Violence

January 21, 2020

Morally and cognitively, developed societies strive to eliminate all kinds of crimes and excluding them from the circle of interactions between all groups of society, especially the family. The family is the fundamental core of all peoples; it may be basis of growth and progress and may be the basis of decline and devastation. Therefore, the issuance of special legislation to protect the family is a very essential matter stemming from the deterrence and protection dualism. Accordingly, on 29 August 2019, the President of the United Arab Emirates issued Federal Law No. (10) of the Year 2019 concerning Protection Against Domestic Violence (hereinafter, the “Law”). The Law will come into effect from the date to be determined by the UAE Council of Ministers’ decision. The Law contains 13 articles that includes the Law’s objetives, the concept of violence,  penalties, and settlements. The provisions of the Law shall apply to domestic violence crimes committed by a family member against another member of his family, whether he is from the immediate or branch or relatives by lineage or marriage to the fourth degree, or from persons covered by alternative family custody. This Law has been issued to protect the family and deter all harmful practices against the family that affects the physical state, integrity and mental health of the family, women, and children. Violence is not only physical The Law not only criminalizes physical violence, but also has set out three other categories that have been added to physical violence, namely: psychological, sexual and economic abuse. The link between these three types is the consequence and effect of violent action, which results in moral, physical, material or sexual harm. Any of these causes a person to feel unsafe and insecure and his/ her psychological and mental state exposed to constant danger. The Role of the Public Prosecution The Law gave the Public Prosecution the power to issue a protection order on its own or based on the victim’s request to deter violent action and protect the victim’s body, well-being and economic status. The Law has provided protection measures to be issued by the Public Prosecution when needed such as preventing approach or entry to the places designated for victim’s protection or any places mentioned in the protection order that has specified for a minimum of thirty days and a maximum of sixty days. Penalty or Conciliation The provisions of the Law covers the principle of punishment for the commission of the criminal offense and the principle of tolerance and reconciliation to allow family members to restore their relationship. The penalty in this Law ranged from imprisonment for a period of three to six months and a fine between 1,000 and 10,000 AED, if the offender violated the protection order issued by the Public Prosecution, or if it commits any of the criminal acts stipulated in the decree. The Law also referred to the provisions of UAE Penal Code of 1987, and doubled the penalty if the offender repeated an act of family violence within one year. As for conciliation, the Law referred to the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Law No. 35 […]

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Chambers Litigation 2019 Second Edition Guide.

January 12, 2020

Chambers and Partners Litigation Chapter 2019

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Economic Substance Regulation of UAE

January 8, 2020

INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai has promulgated the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers No. (31) for 2019 concerning Economic Substance Regulations (ESR/Regulations) on 30 April 2019. Pursuant to the Regulations,  a Ministerial Decision no. 215  of 2019 on the Issuance of Directives for the Implementation on the Provisions of Cabinet Decision no. 31 of 2019 Concerning Economic Substance Requirements was issued on 11 September 2019 as a guidance ( Guidance) on how the Economic Substance can be applied and how the Economic Substance Test may be met for the purpose of complying with the ESR . The Economic Substance Regulations shall apply to UAE onshore, Free Zone and offshore companies that operate and generate income from the “Relevant Activities”. WHAT IS ECONOMIC SUBSTANCE REGULATION (ESR)? Background of the ESR: On 1 December 1997, the European Union (EU) adopted a resolution on a code of conduct for business taxation with the objective to curb harmful tax competition.  Shortly thereafter, the Code of Conduct Group on Business Taxation (COCG) was set up to assess tax measures and regimes that may fall within the scope of the Code of Conduct on Business Taxation. On 5 December 2017, the COCG published the (first) EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes, in cooperation with the Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN). Recently, the world economy has been characterized by a shift from country-specific businesses to global enterprises operating both over the internet and at locations remote from where their physical customers are buying goods and services on online. This has presented opportunities for complex profit repatriation structures – reducing the tax burden in other words – and has fuelled concerns of unfair and unethical practice. As such, EU formalize and applies three listing criteria, which are aligned with international standards and reflect the good governance standards that the Member States comply with themselves: Transparency: Jurisdictions should comply with the international standards on exchange of information, automatic and on request. In addition, jurisdictions should sign the OECD’s (The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) multilateral convention or signed bilateral agreements with all EU Member States to facilitate such exchange. Fair Tax Competition: Jurisdictions should not have harmful tax regimes nor facilitate offshore structures which attract profits without real economic activity. BEPS Implementation: Jurisdictions should commit to implementing the OECD’s Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) minimum standards, starting with Country-by-Country Reporting The common denominator for the Economic Substance systems is The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Forum on Harmful Tax Practices (FHTP), which sets the global standard that requires companies to have substantial activities in a jurisdiction (known as “Economic Substance”). OECD is a unique forum where the governments of 36 member states with market economies work with each other, as well as with more than 70 non-member economies to promote economic growth, prosperity, and sustainable development.  Over 125 jurisdictions around the world are members of the OECD BEPS Inclusive Framework. The FHTP is a sub-body of the Inclusive Framework and is responsible for assessing […]

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IP News, “POLO” vs “Car-pollo”

January 6, 2020

Japan Patent Office (JPO) decided that VW’s famous car model “Polo” is dissimilar to, and unlikely to cause confusion with, the word mark “Car-pollo” when used for car navigation. Volkswagen AG filed an opposition against registration the word mark “Car-pollo” written in standard character filed by Baidu Online Network Technology Beijing Company Limited on the grounds that Opposed mark shall be objectionable based on senior trademark registration for the word mark “POLO”. The opposed mark is designated for; Navigation system (GPS) for vehicles; car video recorders; batteries for vehicles; battery charging devices for motor vehicles; electric locks for vehicles in class 9. Wheelbarrows; airplanes; vessels; bicycles; electric bicycles in class 12. Automatic driving cars design in class 42. Article 4(1)(xi) is a provision to prohibit from registering a junior mark that is deemed identical with, or similar to, any senior registered mark. Article 4(1)(xv) provides that a mark shall not be registered where it is likely to cause confusion with other business entity’s well-known goods or services, to the benefit of brand owner and users’ benefits. According to the above articles, the Opposition Board decided that “POLO” and “Car-pollo” are totally dissimilar from visual, sound and conceptual points of view. Regarding the opponent’s allegation, the Board stated the term “Car” isn’t a usual word to indicate ‘wheelbarrows; airplanes; vessels; bicycles; electric bicycles’ of class 12. From the produced evidence, there does not exist any circumstance to admit the term “pollo” shall be conceived as a dominant portion of the opposed mark in fact. If so, it looks rather appropriate to consider relevant consumers would grasp opposed mark in its entirety. Board also negated a likelihood of confusion between “POLO” and “Car-pollo” even if an opposed mark is used for car video recorders; batteries for vehicles; battery charging devices for motor vehicles; electric locks for vehicles, and car-related services. Based on the foregoing, the Board dismissed opposition and accepted “Car-pollo” registration. In our opinion, the two trademarks as similar and we believe that the customers will mentally make a connection between the trademark and Volkswagen AG.

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Law No(2) of 2019 Amending Some Provisions of Law No(21) of 2015 Concerning Judicial Fees in Dubai Courts.

January 5, 2020

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice-President and Prime Minister has issued, in his capacity as Ruler of Dubai, Law No. 21 of 2015 regarding the new fees of the Dubai Courts. The new law, in its first article, replaced the provisions of Articles (8), (14) and (35) of the original law with other provisions relating to non-payment of fees and the estimated value of the case, in addition to the relative fees for implementation as follows: Not subject to fees: According to the amended Article (8), some categories, claims, appeals, and applications are not subject to the fees prescribed by the original law, i.e. claims, appeals or applications filed by federal or local governmental authorities in the emirate or any of the emirates of the country, claims related to endowments, donations and wills for charitable works, and charitable associations, as well as claims filed by shareholders against the Board of Directors of a public shareholding company or its executive management, are not subject to fees, whenever the percentage of the company’s claimants’ share does not exceed (10%) of its total shares. Furthermore, the fees prescribed by the original law shall not be subject to appeals against alimony judgments, a deposit by Trustee in Bankruptcy,  bidder’s deposit of the price of the property, and what the federal and local governmental authorities deposit on behalf of the concerned parties. Applications for publicity or proof of Islam, ratification of a social welfare application, and requests for death and heredity are not subject to the fee. Estimated Value According to the amended Article (14), claims filed before the courts of first instance, civil suits of a criminal case and claims arising out of the commercial business of more than 500,000 dirhams, excluding personal status lawsuits, shall be charged a fee of (6%) of the claim value. The amount of this fee shall be from a minimum of AED500 but not more than AED20,000 dirhams if the claim value does not exceed AED500,000; AED30,000  if the claim value ranges between AED500,001 to AED1,000,000; and AED40,000 if the claim value is over AED1,000,000. The same article stipulates that the lawsuits arising from commercial business brought before the courts of the first instance which are worth AED500,000 or less shall be charged 6% of the claim value provided that the amount of this fee shall not be less than AED500 and not more than AED20,000, and this fee of (6%) of the claim value shall be collected from the claimant upon registering the claim. The amount of this fee shall not be less than AED 500 and not more than AED5000. This amendment is in favor of a claimant who filed a commercial lawsuit with a claim of no more than AED500,000 to pay court fees upon filing a suit with a maximum of AED5,000 instead of AED20,000 as provided for under the original law prior to this amendment. In addition, it has been stipulated in this Article that this fee paid by the claimant shall be added to the expenses of the adjudged lawsuit and shall be collected from the convicted person […]

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