UK High Court approves Abu Dhabi’s jurisdiction to hear divorce case

The Abu Dhabi Judicial Department has enjoyed international confidence in the courts of Abu Dhabi with the release of a landmark judgment by a High Court in England.

The Abu Dhabi Civil Family Court is the appropriate forum to hear a family dispute between a British couple staying in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, according to the Judicial Department statement.

The British High Court has delivered its judgment, confirming that the Civil Family Court of Abu Dhabi has jurisdiction to hear disputes between the British couple residing in the emirate.

In his judgment, Judge Edward Hess affirmed that the Civil Family Court of Abu Dhabi was established with a view to securing and maintaining the rights of expatriates based on the provisions of law and universally recognized principles of justice. .

Therefore, the UK court simply decides that the Abu Dhabi court, not the English court, is the proper court to hear the divorce case.

This judgment followed the question of jurisdiction raised before the British court in relation to divorce proceedings initiated by the wife. The husband, however, argued that the court in Abu Dhabi was the best court to decide on the divorce, given that the couple are domiciled in the United Arab Emirates.

The High Court of England has issued its ruling confirming the jurisdiction of the Abu Dhabi Civil Family Court to hear the divorce case, and stressing that the embryonic court was set up with a view to giving assurance to non-Muslims and expats living in the United Arab Emirates. that they will be treated in a manner consistent with the standards of non-Muslim countries.

The Abu Dhabi Civil Family Court was established under the Civil Marriage and Divorce in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi Law No. 14 of 2021, which provides, for the first time in the Middle East , family law based on international best practices; and defends the liberty of individuals and their right to marriage and divorce, noting that the law permits unilateral divorce, provides equal access to divorce for husband and wife, and treats men and women equally in terms of civil inheritance and testimony in court.

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Thelma J. Longworth