UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahian today (Sunday) announced a new law in the country, which will regulate the personal status of non-Muslims in Abu Dhabi. According to the authorities, the aim is to provide a legal mechanism that will decide the personal disputes of the non-Muslim populations.

Yussef Said al-Ivri, deputy secretary of the legal department in Abu Dhabi, said that “the new legislation is the first of its kind in the world, as it deals with the smallest details concerning the life of the non-Muslim family.” Al-Ivri added: “The judiciary is acting on the instructions of Deputy Prime Minister Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed al-Nahian, in order to provide solutions to the problem of the status of non-Muslims brought before the courts in the country.”

“The law has been thoroughly researched and analyzed in order to reach a legislative solution in a modern judicial framework for foreigners living in Abu Dhabi, in order to resolve legal disputes in accordance with international best practices,” he concluded.

The law consists of 20 sections divided into several chapters dealing with civil marriage, divorce and joint custody of children and inheritance. The first chapter of the law regulates the marriage proceedings before the courts, by approving a civil marriage which will be based on the “will of the husband and wife together”.

The second chapter defines the divorce proceedings for non-Muslims, the rights of the spouses after the divorce and the discretion of the courts in assessing the woman’s financial rights. The assessment will be made according to a number of criteria such as years of marriage, age and financial status of the spouse. The third and fourth chapters deal with post-divorce child custody, inheritance issues and the registration of wills without Muslims.

By Editor

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