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Guide to Divorce Proceedings in the UAE | Tips for Expats

Home / BLOG / Guide to Divorce Proceedings in the UAE | Tips for Expats

Divorce can be tough, especially when it crosses borders and cultures. If you’re an expat in the UAE thinking about Guide to Divorce Proceedings in the UAE, you’re probably curious about the process. Here, we’ll break down what you need to know, whether you’re Muslim or not.

Getting Divorced as a Muslim Couple

If you and your spouse are Muslims or if your husband is Muslim while you’re not, your divorce process follows Sharia law, based on the Quran and Sunnah. This law is foundational in the UAE and applies to all residents and citizens.

To start the divorce process, head to the Family Guidance Section in the emirate you reside in. This step is mandatory as per UAE law, which emphasizes reconciliation attempts before legal proceedings. A conciliator appointed by the court will meet with both parties separately to try and resolve issues, explaining rights and obligations like alimony, child support, and dowry.

If an agreement is reached, a settlement document can be drafted and signed before the conciliator, ending the divorce without court involvement. However, if divorce is insisted upon, the conciliator provides a referral letter allowing court filing within three months.

In court, evidence and arguments supporting claims are presented, with consideration given to matters like custody, visitation, inheritance, and property division, applying Sharia and UAE law unless there’s a prenup or mutual agreement to apply a different law.

Filing for Divorce as a Non-Muslim Couple

If you and your spouse aren’t Muslim, you’ve got more ways to divorce in the UAE. You can follow your home country’s laws, where you got married, or UAE laws. You can file for divorce in your home country or in the UAE.

If you choose the UAE, you register your case at the Family Guidance Section, like Muslim couples. But you can ask to use your own country’s laws, not Sharia. Show your nationality proof and your country’s laws, like a passport or marriage certificate.

If you both agree on the divorce terms, sign a settlement document and finish your divorce at the Family Guidance Section. But if there’s a disagreement, go to court. The court usually respects your chosen law unless it goes against UAE morals or public order. If your country’s law doesn’t cover something, like custody, UAE law might apply.

How Our Dubai Lawyers Can Assist with Guide to Divorce Proceedings in the UAE

Going through a divorce in the UAE as an expat can be legally complex. Different laws and courts may apply based on your religion, nationality, and situation. Our team at Dubai Lawyers, a top law firm in the UAE, can guide you through every step of your divorce process.

Our skilled lawyers can help with:

1. Choosing the right law for your divorce, whether it’s Sharia law, UAE law, or your home country’s law.
2. Assisting with settlement agreements if you and your spouse agree to divorce amicably.
3. Representing you in court if there are disputes.
4. Negotiating custody, alimony, child support, property division, and inheritance matters.
5. Ensuring your spouse follows the court’s decisions.

We understand the stress of divorce and offer support to make the process fair and smooth. Our team provides honest advice, keeps you updated, and listens to your concerns. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with our expert divorce lawyers in Dubai, UAE.

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