Bounced Cheques in UAE are being reinforced with the new UAE Civil Procedure Law.
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As of January 2, 2023, the UAE has implemented a new Civil Procedure Law, officially known as Federal Law 42 of 2022, which will replace the previous Civil Procedure Code, Federal Law No. (11) of 1992, as amended. The new law applies to all legal proceedings currently pending before the onshore UAE courts, and it is designed to streamline and modernize the country’s legal system.
However, the New Civil Procedure Law does not apply to lawsuits that have already been decided, postponed for judgment, or appeals that have been filed before January 2, 2023, with some limited exceptions. This means that ongoing legal proceedings will continue to be governed by the previous Civil Procedure Code, while new cases will be subject to the updated regulations.
Reinforcement of Bounced cheques
The UAE Civil Procedure Law contains several provisions that govern the process of obtaining judgments against debtors. One such provision is Part 11 of the Law, which deals with Writs of Debt, also known as payment orders. This article discusses the requirements and procedures for obtaining a payment order under the new UAE Civil Procedure Law.
Writs of Debt
A Writ of Debt is a fast-track method of obtaining an ex-parte judgment against a debtor when the debt is confirmed in writing for a specific amount and is not disputed. To obtain a payment order, procedural formalities must be complied with, as set out in Part 11 of the Law.
Cheques as Writs of Execution
It is important to note that under Article 212.2.d of the new UAE Civil Procedure Law, a cheque is considered a Writ of Execution, as opposed to a Writ of Debt. Article 212.2 of the Law specifically relates to Execution Writs. This provision confirms that where a party is unable to cash a cheque because the issuer has insufficient funds, the beneficiary may proceed to enforcement without having to file a substantive case to establish its rights in respect of the bounced cheque.
Part 11 of the UAE Civil Procedure Law provides a mechanism for obtaining payment orders, which are an effective tool for enforcing debts that are not disputed. The Law also clarifies the legal status of cheques, confirming that they are considered Writs of Execution under Article 212.2.d of the Law. This provision allows beneficiaries of bounced cheques to proceed with enforcement without having to file a substantive case.
Procedure for Serving Legal Proceedings
As per the New Civil Procedure Law, the official language of the court proceedings in the UAE remains Arabic. However, the law allows for non-Arabic-speaking litigants, witnesses, and other parties to make their statements through an interpreter after taking the oath according to the law.
In certain cases where proceedings involve specialized matters, specific cases, or particular proceedings, the Chairman of the Federal Judicial Council or the Head of the Local judicial body may now decide to use the English language for trials, procedures, judgments, and decisions. However, there is no further guidance on the specific tribunals that may be assigned to hear such proceedings.
Additionally, if the defendant’s native language is not Arabic, the claimant must provide a certified translation of the proceedings in English, unless the parties have agreed to use another language. It is important to note that this requirement applies to all civil and commercial proceedings except for labor proceedings initiated by employees and workers, as well as personal status proceedings.
Overall, it remains to be seen how the new provisions regarding the use of the English language in certain proceedings will be applied and interpreted by the courts in practice. As always, it is crucial for legal practitioners to stay abreast of any further developments and guidance from the judiciary in this regard.
Service of Process
In recent years, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has made significant progress towards modernizing its legal system. One area in which this is evident is in the rules governing service of legal proceedings. This article explores some of the recent changes to the rules governing service of legal proceedings in the UAE.
Service by modern means of communication
The UAE’s new Civil Procedure Law Federal Law 42 of 2022 has introduced significant changes to the rules governing service of legal proceedings. One key change is the expansion of the methods by which service may be effected. In addition to traditional methods, it is now permissible for process servers to serve proceedings on a defendant by audio or video recorded call, SMS to mobile phone, smart applications, email, fax, and other modern means of communication.
If the notice is served by audio or video recorded calls, the process server must draw up a report setting out the content, time and date of the call and the details of the call recipient. Such a report shall have the probative force as evidence and shall be enclosed with the case file.
Service by publication in a foreign newspaper
Historically, when serving notice of judicial proceedings on an elusive defendant, it has been common practice to do so by publication in a widely circulated UAE daily newspaper published in Arabic. However, the Case Management Office, judge or chief justice may now permit a defendant to be served notice of the proceedings by publication in a foreign newspaper published in a foreign language, if necessary, where the defendant intended to be served is a foreigner.
The Case Management Office, judge or chief justice may now permit a defendant to be served notice of the proceedings by publication in a foreign newspaper published in a foreign language, if necessary, where the defendant intended to be served is a foreigner.
This provision is particularly relevant to international businesses who might find themselves notified of the UAE court proceedings which have been issued against them via a local newspaper in their home jurisdiction, which is less likely to be overlooked than a publication in Arabic in a UAE newspaper that they do not readily access.
Service outside the UAE
Another notable change introduced by the new Civil Procedure Law is the regulation of service of legal proceedings outside the UAE. Unless the means of service is regulated by special agreements, foreign service is now deemed to be effective 21 business days from the date on which the diplomatic mission in the relevant foreign jurisdiction receives the letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation’s letter containing the proceedings and documents to be served.
This is an interesting shift away from the previous requirement to wait for a report that service had been effected via the diplomatic mission in the relevant foreign jurisdiction. The new position is that service is considered to have taken place 21 business days from the date on which the foreign diplomatic mission receives the proceedings to be served from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The UAE’s new Civil Procedure Law Federal Law 42 of 2022 has introduced important changes to the rules governing service of legal proceedings. These changes reflect a desire to modernize the legal system and make it more accessible and efficient. The expanded methods of service, permission to serve notice in a foreign newspaper, and the regulation of service outside the UAE will undoubtedly have significant implications for parties involved in legal proceedings in the UAE.
Appeals to the Court of Appeal
One of the major changes introduced by the New Civil Procedure Law, Federal Law 42 of 2022. relates to the appeals process. This article discusses the provisions of the New Civil Procedure Law concerning the hearing of appeals by the Court of Appeal, and the potential impact on litigants.
Appeals in Chambers
Under the New Civil Procedure Law, the Court of Appeal shall hear appeals “in chambers”, which means that the hearing shall be conducted in private chambers and not in open court. This is a departure from the previous practice where appeals were typically heard in open court. The appeal shall be referred to the Court of Appeal by the Case Management Office.
The Court of Appeal is required to decide on the appeal within 20 business days of the referral. The Court may issue a reasoned judgment or ruling, which may either dismiss the appeal, declare it inadmissible or abated, or affirm the judgment or ruling appealed against. If necessary, the Court may also schedule a hearing to examine the merits of the appeal.
Impact on Litigants
The previous UAE Court system allowed for appeals to both the Court of Appeal and the Court of Cassation, resulting in a two-stage appeals process. This meant that litigants could generally expect to go through two rounds of appeal. However, the provisions of the New Civil Procedure Law requiring the Court of Appeal to hear and decide on the admissibility of the appeal in chambers suggest that there may be closer scrutiny of the grounds presented for the appeal, and potentially less certainty that all appeals will be permitted.
Litigants may therefore face increased uncertainty when appealing a judgment or ruling. The introduction of a closer scrutiny process may lead to more appeals being dismissed, declared inadmissible or abated by the Court of Appeal. This could have a significant impact on litigants who may be relying on an appeal as a means of obtaining a favorable outcome.
The implementation of the New Civil Procedure Law has introduced significant changes to the UAE Court system. The requirement for the Court of Appeal to hear and decide on the admissibility of appeals in chambers suggests that litigants may face increased scrutiny of their grounds for appeal, potentially resulting in more appeals being dismissed, declared inadmissible or abated. This could have a significant impact on litigants who may be relying on an appeal to obtain a favorable outcome.
Appeals to the Court of Cassation
Appeals to the Court of Cassation are an essential aspect of the legal process for individuals and organizations seeking to challenge a court’s decision.
In provision with the new law, it is important to note that there is a time limit for filing an appeal to the UAE Court of Cassation. In the past, this time limit was 60 days, but it has been reduced to 30 days. This is a significant change that parties to legal disputes must be aware of if they intend to appeal a lower court’s decision.
Reducing the time limit for filing an appeal to the Court of Cassation has several implications. On the one hand, it can expedite the legal process and help to ensure that cases are resolved more quickly. On the other hand, it can also increase the pressure on parties to act swiftly and carefully in preparing their appeal. Filing an appeal to the Court of Cassation is a complex and challenging process, requiring a thorough understanding of the law and a detailed analysis of the lower court’s decision.
The recent reduction in the time limit for filing an appeal underscores the importance of careful preparation and strategic planning for parties seeking to challenge a lower court’s decision.
New UAE Civil Procedure Law introduces various key changes, which are aimed at improving the overall legal system of the UAE. However, the practical implications of these changes are not yet clear, and further updates will be issued as more information becomes available.