Ship Arrest/Release

Preservatory arrest of ship or sister vessels of an owners or a charterer may be effected in UAE pursuant to UAE Maritime Commercial Law, Federal Law no. (26) of the year 1981, Articles 115, 116, 117 & 122, subject to the terms, conditions and limitations referred to therein. Similarly, executory arrest may be effectuated as per Articles 123-134.  Where there is no provision special provision at Law, the Court shall apply maritime customs which do not contradict the provisions of Islamic Sharia’ah and the principles of natural justice, as deemed fit.

Furthermore, Article 122 stipulates circumstances under which the court may adjudicate and also Article 80 which extends the provisions of jurisdiction, obligations and rules for privately owned commercial vessels to commercial vessels other than the exceptions given under Articles 81&82, and/or cargos owned, used or managed by the State or one of its public agencies or organs.

It should be noted that United Arab Emirates is not a signatory to the following conventions;

  • The International Convention on the Arrest of Seagoing Ships, 1952
  • The International Convention on the Arrest of Ships, 1999
  • The International Convention on Maritime Liens and Mortgages, 1993

Enforcing foreign judgements in Dubai: Conditions and limitations for Enforcement of foreign judgments in UAE (outside DIFC) are stipulated in Article 235, Civil Procedure Law.

Furthermore, as a member state and a party to 1996 GCC Convention, it is incumbent upon UAE courts to enforce courts judgements by other member states and vice versa, reference Article 1 of the Convention- “the GCC countries shall execute the final judgments issued by the courts of any member state in civil, commercial and administrative cases…”,

Finally, we at AWS can evaluate and offer advice on choice of jurisdiction for enforcing claims, liens and assignments, as appropriate.

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