Family Business

Family-owned businesses represent a large part of the UAE business community and contribute significantly to the growth of the economy of the UAE and the GCC. Many of these businesses have grown quickly with wide-ranging and often very ambitious investment goals and opportunities at their disposal.  The logical plan for many is to expand across the Middle East and into the international arena.

For many years, Hadef & Partners has been, and continues to be, the trusted adviser to many of the largest and most successful family businesses in the UAE and the GCC, supporting their diversification into major sectors. We have helped guide and advise many of these companies throughout the entire lifecycle of their businesses, attending to their structuring and expansion needs, and navigating them through some of the challenges of succession planning to unlock their potential for growth.

Drawing on a combination of local and international expertise, our clients have access to over 35 years of knowledge and best practice that ensures any legal structuring or transition is a seamless process. Hadef & Partners has devised innovative corporate structures which enable UAE and GCC families to achieve their objectives, such as enabling and facilitating a smooth succession between current and future generations of bloodline family members without negatively affecting the performance and success of the business of the operating companies.

Our team consists of experienced corporate, commercial, banking and regulatory lawyers in addition to litigators who have full rights of audience in all UAE courts and tribunals.

We offer a comprehensive, entry to exit service which includes advising on:

  • Family corporate structuring and restructuring including corporate structuring options
  • the assessment of the main objectives of the family restructuring
  • the preparation and review of any family protocol documentation
  • DIFC and trust related matters in connection with the family restructuring
  • Shariah Law aspects which may be relevant to the family restructuring
  • corporate governance systems
  • succession planning
  • shareholder and management disputes
  • changes to ownership and management structures
  • shareholder rights issues and director’s duties
  • regulatory strategies and compliance
  • formation of legal entities
  • commercial joint ventures, agencies, sponsorship and related arrangements
  • UAE corporate laws and regulations

  • “Sources praise the team's local expertise, commenting: ‘They have local knowledge of the region, combined with very strong legal skills and provide sound advice’.”

    Chambers Global, 2018

  • “Peers commend Hadef & Partners as ‘one of the premier local law firms’.”

    Chambers Global, 2017

  • “Clients describe the team's members as ‘first class - very proactive, with superb areas of expertise’.”

    Chambers Global, 2017

  • Clients say "They are pragmatic, can-do lawyers."

    Chambers Global 2015

  • This well-established local firm represents a large stable of domestic as well as international clients, across a range of transactional and advisory instructions.

    Chambers Global 2013

  • Shortlisted as Regional Law Firm of the Year 2016

    Shortlisted as Regional Law Firm of the Year 2016

    By : The Oath Middle East Legal Awards

  • Most Responsive Domestic Firm in the UAE 2016

    Most Responsive Domestic Firm in the UAE 2016

    By : Asian-MENA Counsel – In-House Community Survey 2016

  • Middle East Law Firm of the Year 2016

    Middle East Law Firm of the Year 2016

    By : Corporate Counsel Middle East Awards

  • Shortlisted as Regional Law Firm of the Year 2015

    Shortlisted as Regional Law Firm of the Year 2015

    By : The Oath Middle East Legal Awards

  • Shortlisted for Project Finance Deal of the Year 2015


    Lawyer :Roger Morris

  • Most Responsive Domestic Firm in the UAE 2015

    By : Asian MENA Counsel In-house Survey

  • Highly Commended for Middle East Law firm of the Year 2015

    By : Corporate Counsel Middle East Awards

  • Middle East Water Deal of the Year 2014

    for Mirfa IWPP

    By : IJ Global Awards 2014

    Lawyer :Roger Morris

  • Recognised as leading lawyer 2015

    By : IFLR 1000 2015

    Lawyer :Alan Rodgers

Key Contacts