Be Aware: Defaulters in UAE May Be Pursued In India

July 29, 2020

In a historical development of India and UAE relationship, UAE Judgment will be recognized and enforceable in India based on reciprocity as per the Notification issued by Government of India on 17 January 2020 (“Notification”). On 17 January 2020, Government of India published in its official gazette Notification for recognition of the UAE as a ’Reciprocating Territory’ under The Code of Civil Procedure of 1908 of India (5 of 1908) (“Indian CPC”) relative to the enforcement of UAE judgments by Indian Courts. Thus, a judgment passed by a ‘Superior Court’ of UAE can be directly enforced in India by filing a certified and legalized copy of the final and conclusive judgment. BACKGROUND OF THE NOTIFICATION India and UAE had entered into an Agreement on 25 October 1999 on Juridical and Judicial Cooperation in Civil and Commercial Matters for the Service of Summons, Judicial Documents, Commissions, Execution of Judgments and Arbitral Awards (“Agreement’). The Agreement so far only applied to service of summons, judicial documents or processes, recording of evidence by means of Letters of Request and / or commissions and execution of decrees and arbitral awards. On 29 May 2000, the instrument of ratification of the Agreement was exchanged and published in the Indian Gazette on 16 December 2000. However, until publication of the Notification in official gazette on 17 January 2020, India had only given effect to service of summons and other process under Section 29 (c) of the CPC. On 17 January 2020, the Ministry of Law and Justice of the Government of India issued a notification stating that: “In exercise of the powers conferred by Explanation 1 to Section 44A of the Code of Civil Procedure Code of 1908  (5 of 1908), the Central Government hereby declares , United Arab Emirates to be  a reciprocating territory for the purposes of the said section and the following Courts in United Arab Emirates shall be the superior Courts of that territory, namely:- Federal Courts: Federal Supreme Court Federal, First Instance and Appeals Courts in the Emirates of Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah. Local Courts: Abu Dhabi Judicial Department; Dubai Courts; Ras Al Khaimah Judicial Department; Courts of Abu Dhabi Global Markets; Courts of Dubai International Financial Centre”. RECIPROCITY The Notification of 17 January 2020 is based on reciprocity. The judgment issued by foreign courts has no admissibility and hold no evidentiary value in Indian Courts, unless they are declared to be ‘Reciprocating Territories’ under Section 44 of Indian CPC. Section 44A of Indian CPC summarises the principle of reciprocity, i.e. execution in India of foreign decree passed by a foreign country (reciprocating) and the manner in which it is to be done. The said provision provides: “44A. Execution of Decrees passed by Courts in reciprocating territory— (1) Where a certified copy of a decree of any of the superior Courts of any reciprocating territory has been filed in a District Court, the decree may be executed in India as if it has been passed by the District Court.  (2) Together with the certified copy of the decree, a certificate from such superior court shall be […]

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