Indian courts can now execute UAE civil case verdicts in a ‘significant’ move

Bank loan defaulters in the UAE can now be prosecuted in India

The new notification passed in India, which permits courts in the country to execute the verdicts issued in UAE civil court cases will have a “significant” impact, a senior lawyer has said.

The notification, passed by the Indian ministry of Law and Justice on January 18, identifies the UAE as a “reciprocating territory” for the mutual enforcement of court judgments.

The regulation covers courts across the UAE – from the Federal Supreme Court to the courts of Abu Dhabi Global Markets and DIFC Courts.

This means bank loan defaulters in the UAE can now be prosecuted in India.

“Although the 1999 bilateral treaty on judicial co-operation between the UAE and India was ratified by the UAE under Federal Decree No. 33 of 2000, UAE judgments were not readily enforceable in India,” explained Sally Kotb, counsel, Dispute Resolution – Arbitration at law firm Baker McKenzie Habib Al Mulla.

“This was for the very reason that the UAE was not declared as a “reciprocating territory” by an Indian gazette notification.

“As such, India had only given effect to the 1999 bilateral treaty in respect of service of summons and other judicial procedures. This was the case notwithstanding the fact that the DIFC Courts had facilitated the enforcement of Indian court judgments in the DIFC.”

The recent notification is a welcome development and would provide greater scope for legal and judicial collaboration between the UAE and India, she opined.

“With the Notification facilitating the enforcement of UAE judgments in India, we would expect to see more certainty in commercial dealings as businesses would have a right of recourse against their debtors in India.

“This development is especially significant considering the substantial number of trading relations and Indian owned companies in the UAE,” she added.