18 Mar 2020

The DIFC Courts and Dubai Courts take temporary precautionary measures against the spread of Covid-19

Authored by: Abdulrahman Juma & Adrian Chadwick

The DIFC Courts and its Registry will operate on a (generally) completely remote basis

Following an announcement late yesterday afternoon by the DIFC Courts to all users, the doors of the DIFC Courts and Registry offices will now be physically closed from today until 26 April 2020 (or, pending further notice). We understand that generally speaking, all hearings conducted from today onwards will be via teleconference for the Court of First Instance and video conference (for over-seas litigants) or teleconference (for those situated in the UAE) for the Small Claims Tribunal. Practitioners are strongly encouraged to make use of the existing e-bundling system in the Court of First Instance and in line with usual processes, all documents in the Small Claims Tribunal must continue to be filed electronically. The pro bono clinics will also be temporality suspended during this period. Other than in some very limited circumstances, access to the Court or Registry Offices will be extremely limited and physical attendance will be by permission only. The DIFC Courts are well set-up for remote hearings and e-bundling and Hadef & Partners’ DIFC Registered practitioners are well practiced in operating remotely in this way. Yesterday, Hadef & Partners was involved in one of the last cases to be heard in person at the DIFC Courts before they shut their doors. If you have any questions about this announcement or DIFC litigation more generally, please contact Adrian Chadwick - a.chadwick@hadefpartners.com

The Dubai Courts temporarily adjourn some hearings, whereas others will continue remotely.

We understand that Dubai Courts have temporarily adjourned some hearings at all levels (Court of First Instance, Appeals and Cassation) until 16 April 2020, as a temporary precautionary measure against the spread of Covid-19. We understand that the Dubai Courts will continue to hear certain matters, e.g. urgent matters, criminal cases and appeals involving inmates and detainees remotely. Dubai Courts has various digital channels that can be availed during this time, such as their App. Our in-house Advocates work closely with Dubai Courts and are well versed in the digital platforms used by the Courts. If you have any questions about this announcement or Dubai Courts litigation more generally, please contact Abdulrahman Juma a.juma@hadefpartners.com