Dh7 million in alimony payments: UAE civil court issues one of region’s largest divorce settlements – News

The divorce itself was granted in less than a month and the financial settlement (alimony) was issued within 4 months

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Published: Friday, March 10, 2023 at 8:35 am

Last update: Friday, March 10, 2023 2:42 p.m

The Abu Dhabi Civil Family Court has issued one of the largest divorce settlements in the region, valued at more than Dh7 million, according to a legal expert.

The secular expats court awarded the wife 35 percent of her ex-husband’s wealth, including 35 percent of his property and salary.

The couple, who live in Abu Dhabi, have been married for a long time.

“This is the first divorce case in the region in which an expert is appointed by the court to calculate the property and financial assets of the party under the Civil Marriage Law 14/2021 enacted in Abu Dhabi in November 2021,” said Hesham Elrafei, a Legal expert in Abu Dhabi.

“The law and the recent court decision are symbolic as they strengthen women’s rights and gender equality in the region with a new era of modern and progressive family law concepts.”

The divorce itself was granted in less than a month and the financial settlement (alimony) was issued within 4 months.

The civil family court (formerly called the Non-Muslim Court) is available to all expats, regardless of faith and place of residence.

Abu Dhabi had introduced this law which regulates family matters for foreigners including civil marriage, divorce, joint custody of children and financial rights. The law, which came into force in December 2021, applies to all foreigners, tourists and individuals (Muslims and non-Muslims) from countries applying the circular law.

According to the new civil marriage law, the divorce can now be pronounced promptly and efficiently from the first divorce hearing. The couple wishing to separate can do so without the need to prove prejudice or justify the reasons for the divorce. The length of the marriage is also taken into account when deciding on alimony payments.

The law also provides for the court to order that one spouse pay the other a one-time lump sum in addition to the regular payments.

According to figures from the Abu Dhabi Civil Family Court dated February 1, 2023, over 6,000 couples from 127 nations have exchanged vows under the new civil marriage law since the program began. The majority of these were Filipinos with 2,300 couples, Indians with over 830 couples, Americans, Russians, Lebanese, Nigerians and Europeans.

The Expat Family Court also received 200 no-fault divorce applications, 130 civil inheritance applications, 1500 probate applications and 300 maternal custody cases.

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