Explained: All You Need to Know About Digital Services for Family Disputes in the UAE

family law


March 07, 2022



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Family courts have launched an electronic registration system for family cases. This service can be accessed through the official electronic portal maintained by the courts. The system for electronic filing has been now introduced with the specific aim to simplify the entire process, making it more customer-friendly to achieve speedy submission of applications before the family guidance department.

By launching the e-services, the customers can rely on the online process without the requirement to attend court physically. This is a great boon and advancement to the traditional court procedures and without doubt a welcome move for all. The reliance on online services will ensure that customers can take easy steps matching the demands of daily life and avoid being bogged down by rigid court rules and procedures.

How to Access the System:

To access the system, the customers need to simply log in, in an easy and quick process, by using their digital identity. The customer will be asked to enter a verification code that will be sent to their phone by using the service itself. Once the login is completed, the customer will be required to submit a quick form that includes their submissions and will be required to create a personal profile.

Key Features of the New Electronic System:

Some of the key features provided by the new electronic system allow customers to avail of the services for a diverse number of requirements, including but not limited to:

  • Making submissions
  • Follow-up requests on existing matters
  • Submit Inquiry
  • View the case detail and next hearing dates

The term 'family law' in the UAE broadly refers to the Federal Law No. 28 of 2005 on 'Personal Status' and its amendments (Personal Status law) that governs all aspects relating to marriage, divorce, maintenance, child custody, succession and guardianship matters concerning both UAE nationals and residents.

The personal status law is guided by the Islamic principles of Sharia and its traditions. The said law is broad in its application and comprises an exhaustive three hundred and sixteen articles, and the provisions relating to the same are constantly amended. Family counselling advice provided by the centre has often proven to be highly effective in resolving family disputes.

The type of family disputes that can be submitted to the counselling centre involves maintenance matters, marital disharmony, divorce consideration, and child custody matters, amongst others. It is also mandatory that the counselling steps are completed for a formal case to be launched before the family courts.

More often than not, the family counselling centre enjoys a high success rate in resolving family disputes and endeavours to reach effective solutions. The newly launched e-service system now endeavours to provide a complete digital solution that can completely dispense paperwork and also to provide a more effective multipurpose system that enables quicker transactions by shortening lead times.

Legal Update:

The introduction of a new personal status law for the non-Muslims effective February 2023, the Federal Decree-Law No. 41 of 2022 on Civil Personal Status, brings with itself numerous changes in terms of marriage, divorce, custody, inheritance etc. Following the issuance of the Abu Dhabi Personal Status Law for non-Muslim Foreigners in 2021, the federal government came out with a Personal Status Law that would apply to the entire non-Muslim population of the UAE, whether citizens or expatriates.

This New Federal Law has introduced changes in personal status matters for non-Muslims in matters related to family guidance mediation, rights between the parties concerning testimony, inheritance, divorce, calculation of time-based on the Gregorian calendar, and joint custody of children. The New Federal Law has introduced civil marriage at a federal level and provided equal rights to parties in requesting the divorce. The New Federal Law covers matters related to alimony, custody, inheritance, and parentage and shall be applied between non-Muslim expatriate residents in case none of them wanted to apply his/her home country's law in the UAE.

There is no mandatory mediation in the family matter before the commencement of the court case. The Divorce cases shall be excluded from being considered by family guidance committees and shall be directly referred to the Court to issue a judgment in this regard from the first session. If the New Federal Law was applied, the divorce could be given to any of the parties based on a no-fault divorce in the first court hearing where none of the parties may be required to provide any reason for the divorce. To know more information about this law, please feel free to click this link.

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Disclaimer: There have been recent changes/amendments in the provisions of the UAE Family Law covered in the content on this website. The views and opinions in the articles are contemporaneous with the time of its publication only and do not necessarily address any matters after the recent amendments of the law or supreme court decisions issued after the date of this publication. The content of this website contains general information and may not reflect current legal developments. Such content is designed only to give general information on the developments actually covered. It is not intended to be a comprehensive summary of recent developments in the law, treat exhaustively the subjects covered, provide legal advice or render a legal opinion. Since the law is constantly changing and since the law will vary based on different facts and circumstances, statements on this website regarding the status of a given law or legal issue may not be current or applicable to your particular situation. You should not take any action based on the information in this website. Each legal issue depends on its individual facts and different matters have different laws and regulations. We may make changes to the features, functionality or content of the website at any time.


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