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Non-Muslim expats: How to get a will for assets in the UAE

People who do not draft their wills before they die, the law applied in the UAE will be used for the division of their assets. The UAE law of inheritance for will have an impact on the guardianship of your children if your children are from the minor group of age. This is why it is better for the people to draft their wills before they die with the help of will lawyers in Dubai who offer will drafting services. in Dubai.

If you are a non-Muslim and are living in UAE, your home country must have your will already drafted for the sake of your assets. But if you have any movable or immovable assets in UAE, the laws of your home country will not be applied in UAE until or unless you get your will registered right according to the UAE law.

There are a lot of expats who do not plan to live permanently in Dubai but there is a huge number of those expats who consider living in Dubai more than they had originally thought.

What is Will?

A Will is a vital document that ensures your family’s security and your wishes are respected after your death. Wills can legally safeguard your family and specify how you want your assets and affairs to be handled. Our will writing services will assist you in choosing the best Wills for your needs. Whether you are an expat in Dubai or you have properties and assets in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, or anywhere in the UAE, our legal experts and consultants will simplify this process for you.

What if you do not draft your will before you die?

  • Right after you die, your bank accounts will be frozen no matter whether the bank account was a joint or an individual account.
  • All of the visas that were dependent on the deceased person will be cancelled
  • The process of assets reappropriation may not play a part on the favor of the immediate family of the person who dies.
  • He minor age children’s custody will be gone to those who you might not prefer and for the children custody, the government may have to interest for the decision making
  • Your life insurance may also go into the side of the government which will then be considered as their property
  • If the court case appeals for more than five years, a huge number of legal payouts may occur
  • Most of your assets may also go to the extended family of the deceased person and it will all be handled right according to the Sharia law.

What should you do?

  • You need to inform your family about all the assets you possess. You should inform them about your legal liabilities as well from time to time.
  • You must have a complete list of the assets that you possess. This list should have the complete information about your assets including the life insurance and employee benefits as well. The list should give an idea about your worth
  • You must complete your beneficiary details on the forms of employee benefits.

Wills for Non- Muslim Expats

If you don’t have a Will for your UAE estate, you may face the risk of Shariah law deciding how your inheritance is distributed, which may not match your wishes. A UAE Court may apply Sharia law to an inheritance case where the deceased did not have a Will, unless the deceased clearly asked for something else. This clear request is usually done by making a valid Will that follows UAE Law.
That’s why it’s essential to have a valid Will, to protect your estate and to appoint guardians for your minor children if you have any.

You can choose from different types of Wills:

  1. DIFC Registered Wills
  2. ADJD Will
  3. Dubai Courts Notary Will.

1. The Dubai International Financial Centre Courts Wills Registry for Non-Muslims (DIFC WILLS)

Non-Muslims who live and invest in the UAE can use the DIFC Courts Wills Service to decide how their assets and/or children will be taken care of after their death. The Wills Service helps the DIFC Courts Wills Registry for Non-Muslims, where the DIFC Courts Wills are stored and where all the issues and claims related to probate are dealt with.
The Wills Service and the Registry work together to make sure that a person’s UAE assets are given to the people they choose in their registered Wills. They follow Dubai Law No. 15 of 2017 and a set of rules that create a system that is fast, efficient, and cost effective, and that can be enforced by the courts.

Types of DIFC Wills

The DIFC uses a common law system and lets people choose how to share their property and money after they die. The DIFC Wills and Probate Registry Rules make this possible. The DIFC Court can give a probate order that works in the whole UAE and does not need any extra legal steps from the UAE local Courts.

The DIFC Wills Registry offers these five kinds of Wills:

  • Full Will
  • Financial Assets Will
  • Guardianship Will
  • Property Will
  • Business Owners Will.

To make a DIFC Will, you need to follow these rules:

  • You are not a Muslim.
  • You and the people who help, handle, and see your Will are 21 years old or more, as per UAE laws.

2. Abu Dhabi Judicial Department (ADJD) Wills Registry

If you are not a Muslim and you have some property in the UAE, you can make an ADJD Will. This is a legal document that lets you decide what happens to your assets and your children after you die. You can register your ADJD Will at the ADJD Wills Registry, which is under the Civil Law system and covers the whole UAE. You need to go to the registry in person or online to sign your ADJD Will. You can also get help from a lawyer to prepare your will and translate it into Arabic if needed.

To make an ADJD Will, you need to meet these conditions:

  • You are not a Muslim;
  • You and the people you choose to handle your will are at least 21 years old, as per UAE laws;
  • You have a valid UAE Resident Identity Card;
  • Your will must be in Arabic or both Arabic and another language, and translated by a certified translator if not in Arabic.

3. Dubai Courts Notary Will

The Dubai Courts Notary is a service for non-Muslim expats in the UAE who want to make a Will. This is a legal document that tells how you want your property and your children to be taken care of when you die. The Dubai Courts Notary uses the Civil Law system and does not apply Shariah law to your estate. You can use this service for your assets in any of the seven Emirates in the UAE.

To make a Will with the Dubai Courts Notary, you need to meet these requirements:

  • You are not a Muslim;
  • You and the people you pick to handle your Will are 21 years old or more;
  • You may have to show your UAE Resident Identity Card;
  • You have to get your Will translated into Arabic by a certified translator and notarized at the Dubai Notary Public.
  • You need to visit the Dubai Courts Notary in person to sign your Will. You can get in touch with our law office to help you prepare everything beforehand.

Get a will and stay on the safe side

If you are planning to have a will of your own, you are doing it all right. Having your will at the right time is very important because it let you choose where your assets and property will go after you die. If you do not draft your will before your death, there is a chance that the people who are not worthy of your assets may become the owners of your property.

Will lawyers and attorney services

For the best consultant services regarding will drafting, you should take the help of HHS lawyers in Dubai. They have skilled and qualified employees who are very good at helping the people in drafting their wills and making a will legal. Also, the cost of the will drafts that they charge is very affordable which attracts the people towards them even more

Hazim Darwish

Hazim Darwish, is a Senior Partner of HHS Lawyers in UAE. Practicing law for almost a decade, he has in-depth knowledge on UAE legislation with particular expertise on legal drafting, contract drafting, labor disputes, family law, and regulatory compliance for business organizations. Hazim Darwish also provides counsel on legal rights and obligations in the UAE to clients, including individuals and businesses subject to investigation or prosecution under Criminal Law by major regulators.