criminal law


May 09, 2020



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We have been confronting a very difficult situations such as lockdowns, the shutdown of businesses, travel restrictions, social distancing, and no-human contact, which was the immediate reaction of the world towards the pandemic. The government of all countries, to prevent the further spread of the virus, issued these foregoing rules, and many countries have even issued criminal penalties on those who violate the government rules of social distancing or lockdowns to ensure health and safety in the country.

The government of UAE has recently confirmed that any person who fails to adhere to home quarantine instructions and to get retested as per the health procedures or refrains from the implementation of such instructions could be fined AED 50,000. If a person refuses to take the prescribed medication or treatment despite being informed will also be fined AED 50,000.

Federal Law Number 14 of 2014 On the Control of Communicable Diseases regulates the guidelines of precautionary measures implemented in the wake of COVID-19. Article 34 of the law prohibits an individual who has a transferable sickness from deliberately carrying an action, which could result in the transmission of the disease. Violating Article 34 could lead to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years and a fine not less than AED 50,000 to AED 100,000 or any one of these penalties.

As per Articles 32 and 33 of this law, a person who becomes aware of his infection is required to adhere to the preventive measures, implement the medical prescriptions and follow the instructions given to him to prevent the transmission of the infection to others. The infected person is also required to receive advice, treatment and awareness regarding the infection risks and the method of transmission of the infection.

Under Article 31 of this law, a person who has been infected with a communicable disease like COVID-19 is prohibited from travelling or moving to a place other than the health facility without the consent of the authorities. Violation of Articles 31, 32 and 33 of this law could lead to imprisonment and a fine of not less than AED 10,000 and a maximum of AED 50,000 (UAE Dirhams fifty thousand).

Individuals should be morally responsible, follow the directions issued by the specialists, stay away from rumours, look for clinical assistance and not come in contact with others in case they are infected, which may risk the chances of others being infected as well.

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