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Understanding the Intricacies of Memorandum of Defense in UAE Court Proceedings

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Shulka S. Chavan

Published on March 25, 2024, 08:35:42


uae, memorandum of defense, court proceedings

Under the legal system of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), litigation s conducted in accordance with the guidelines outlined in Federal Law No. 11 of 1992 on Civil Procedure, commonly referred to as the Civil Procedure Law, and Cabinet Decision No. 57 of 2018.

The submission of a Memorandum of Defense by the defendant in response to a plaintiff's claim is a crucial step in this process. This article explains the importance of the Memorandum of Defense and its procedural intricacies within UAE courts.

Legal Framework

Federal Law No. 11 of 1992 on Civil Procedure and Cabinet Decision No. 57 of 2018 establish the foundation for judicial procedures in the UAE. These regulations delineate procedures for filing claims, presenting defences, issuing verdicts and initiating appeals within the UAE judicial system.

All judicial proceedings, including document submissions, are conducted exclusively in Arabic. Non-Arabic documents must undergo translation and legalisation before submission to the court.

Initiation of Proceedings

Civil litigation in the UAE commences with the plaintiff filing a claim with the Court of First Instance. Pursuant to Article 16 of the Cabinet Decision, this entails submitting a comprehensive Statement of Claim containing pertinent legal information. Additionally, in accordance with Article 20 of the Cabinet Decision, the Statement of Claim must be accompanied by supporting documentation, such as expert reports.

Notification and Assistance

Upon registration of the Statement of Claim, the defendant is notified through various channels delineated in Article 6 of the Cabinet Decision. Should traditional notification methods prove ineffective, alternative options include publication in designated newspapers, personal service and modern technological means.

Submission of Memorandum of Defence

Following notification, the defendant must promptly furnish a Memorandum of Defense outlining the defense against the plaintiff's claim. This memorandum may include relevant supporting documentation. Seeking legal counsel at this juncture is advisable, necessitating the granting of power of attorney to the counsel.

Pleading and Adjudication

Subsequently, both parties engage in public pleadings in accordance with Article 38 of the Cabinet Decision. In commercial cases, the defendant's defense typically relies on documentary evidence after the plaintiff presents its case. Thereafter, the court deliberates and issues a decision encompassing all pertinent information, as mandated by Articles 50 and 51 of the Cabinet Decision.

Appeals and Execution

As per Article 159 of the Civil Procedure Law, parties have the option to either execute the judgment or file an appeal within 30 days of its issuance, unless otherwise specified by statute.

Understanding the Memorandum of Defense and its role in the UAE judicial system is essential for both plaintiffs and defendants involved in legal disputes. Compliance with procedural requirements and securing legal representation significantly influences the outcome of litigation, underscoring the importance of adherence to established legal frameworks within the UAE jurisdiction.

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