In the vibrant United Arab Emirates (UAE), a multitude of expatriates, numbering over 8 million, seek opportunities and establish roots in this dynamic nation. Many of these individuals possess assets both in the UAE and their home countries. Additionally, ambitious entrepreneurs from various continents strategically invest in profitable businesses in Dubai, often selecting esteemed free zones like Meydan Free Zone.
With careful consideration, these individuals establish their enterprises and prudently invest in prestigious assets, thereby fortifying their wealth within this thriving business hub. Nonetheless, it is critical to set a wide plan to safeguard these assets and ensure their seamless transfer.
One crucial aspect of such planning involves the creation of a will that clearly articulates your desires and instructions about the distribution of your estate. This encompasses money, property, possessions, and other valuable assets, ensuring their proper allocation after your lifetime.
While wills can vary in complexity, ranging from simple remarks to detailed legal documents, they serve an indispensable role in facilitating the settlement of your financial affairs in the UAE. Moreover, they help alleviate stress for your loved ones during challenging times, especially if you have dependents such as young children, disabled offspring, or elderly parents.
While wills are not legally required to be registered in the UAE, it is highly advisable for expatriates residing in the country or those who own movable or immovable assets within its borders to consider registering a will. This is particularly relevant in places like the Meydan Free Zone, which offers the advantage of starting a business with a guaranteed bank account in Dubai, allowing for the secure management of funds.
In addition to bank accounts and businesses, it is also possible to register a will for assets such as real estate, investments, and other financial holdings. By taking this proactive step, you can preempt potential legal complications that your legal heirs might face in the event of your passing. Registering a will ensures clarity and certainty in the distribution of assets, offering peace of mind and reducing the likelihood of disputes.
Having a registered will adds an extra layer of protection for your assets and enables your loved ones to navigate the legal processes more smoothly during a difficult time. It allows you to clearly express your intentions regarding asset distribution, ensuring that your wishes are followed and minimizing any potential confusion or disputes among your beneficiaries.
To virtually protect your property in the UAE, it is important to consider the following five types of protection available –
The DIFC Courts Wills Service allows non-Muslim expatriates to register wills under regulations similar to those in England and Wales. This service grants testamentary freedom, enabling the transfer of assets based on your intentions without invoking Sharia law.
Abu Dhabi Wills
The Abu Dhabi Wills Registry empowers non-Muslims to register alternative wishes for their assets, providing an option to deviate from Sharia law. By registering with this registry, you ensure that your intentions are accurately expressed and your wealth is protected in Abu Dhabi.
Although strictly regulated, asset transfer through gifting allows you to change ownership of property or assets to specific individuals, such as spouses or children. This strategy helps mitigate the constraints imposed by Sharia inheritance laws.
Holding Companies And Trusts
Transferring assets and property into a holding company or trust offers effective protection. These legal structures provide privacy, control, and administration benefits, allowing you to secure your assets for future generations.
The UAE’s civil law jurisdiction allows for the establishment of foundations and legal entities that hold assets on behalf of beneficiaries. Foundations offer similar advantages to trusts, including the separation of legal and beneficial interests and control over assets.
When implementing these strategies, it is essential to consult legal professionals who specialize in estate planning in the UAE. They can ensure compliance with regulations and prepare the procedure to your precise conditions. Once registered, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your UAE assets and property are effectively protected.
Expatriates in the UAE should assume a forceful strategy to defend their assets. Seek advice from qualified solicitors to determine the best strategies for securing your business, property, and other valuable assets while residing in Dubai.