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How Can Expatriates of Non- Muslim Faith Draft & Register a Will for Assets in the UAE?

You can register your UAE estate will at the Dubai Courts, DIFC Wills Service Centre, or your home country's consulate

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Pavitra Shetty

Published on May 22, 2024, 10:31:34

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As a non-Muslim resident of Dubai, you have several options for creating and registering a will for your assets in the UAE. The relevant laws include Federal Decree-Law No. 41 of 2022 on Civil Personal Status; Law No. 15 of 2017 Concerning Administration of Estates and Implementation of Wills of Non-Muslims in the Emirate of Dubai; and DIFC Wills and Probate Registry Rules

Non-Muslims can apply the UAE Personal Status Law for non-Muslims for their matters. Article 1(1) of this law states that it applies to non-Muslim UAE nationals and residents unless they follow their home country's laws regarding marriage, divorce, inheritance, wills and parentage.

Article 11(1) further allows non-Muslims to leave a will distributing all their UAE-based assets to anyone of their choice, following the guidelines in the Implementing Regulations.

Dubai Law No. 15 of 2017 outlines the procedures for the registration of wills. Article 3 applies this law to all wills and estates of non-Muslims in Dubai, including the DIFC. Article 6(a) establishes the 'Register of Wills of Non-Muslims' at the Dubai Courts and DIFC Courts.

You can register your will at either the Dubai Courts or the DIFC Courts Wills Service Centre. The will must detail the executor(s) and beneficiaries and cover all types of assets, including real estate, business shares, bank accounts and other valuables, whether located within or outside the UAE.

The DIFC Wills and Probate Registry (WPR) Rules specify the requirements for non-Muslim wills, such as being in English, witnessed by two witnesses, and appointing executors and guardians. The will can include all global assets of the testator.

Alternatively, non-Muslim expatriates can register their will at their home country's consulate or embassy if such a service is available.

In conclusion, you can draft and register your will for your UAE estate at the Dubai Courts, the DIFC Wills Service Centre, or your home country's consulate/embassy. Wills registered in Dubai through these procedures are typically valid and enforceable outside the UAE, subject to the laws of other involved countries.

For any enquiries or information, contact ask@tlr.ae or call us on +971 52 644 3004Follow The Law Reporters on WhatsApp Channels.

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