Will Registry in Abu Dhabi

The Abu Dhabi Judicial Department introduced the possibility to register a Non-Muslim Will in August 2017. Non-Muslim Expatriates can now register their Will in the Capital to determine how their assets shall be distributed upon the testators death.

The establishment of the Non-Muslim Will registry raises the legal protection for assets not only in Abu Dhabi, but also in the whole United Arab Emirates by granting the Non-Muslim Testator the possibility to dispose of his/her assets upon death by opting to the applicable home country inheritance law and therefore subsequently opting out of sharia law.

The Testator having assets in the United Arab Emirates registering such a Non-Muslim Will in Abu Dhabi does not have to be resident of the country. The Testator can theoretically register a Will covering the worldwide assets (movable and immovable), however – in line with the international laws – only the disposition relating to the assets in the United Arab Emirates can be enforced by the appointed Trustee/Executor via the local courts in the United Arab Emirates.

The Will can be submitted in English for the pre-approval by the Registry, but has then to be translated to Arabic for the attestation by the Notary Public before the actual registration with the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department. The Will can be registered bi-lingual, the Arabic however always prevails, contrary to the DIFC-Will based on the English common law system registered in English only.

Swiss ILC services

Protecting your UAE assets and living with a peace of mind – Swiss ILC will gladly assist you with qualified lawyers, also registered as will draftsmen with the DIFC Will and Probate Registry, with all the needs concerning a Will by gathering the requirements, drafting and registering the Non-Muslim Will with the competent DIFC or Abu Dhabi Judicial Department authorities.

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