“It is anticipated that the Ejari system and processes will gradually move fully online"
The Dubai Land Department has introduced a standard form tenancy contract for use in relation to all residential, commercial and industrial and residential leases of property located in Dubai according to Al Tamimi & Company, a top law firm in the UAE.
As from 1 March 2017, it is now mandatory to use such standard form in order to register a lease in Ejari, the emirate’s official lease registration system.
The new standard form seeks to further regulate the landlord and tenant relationship and provide safeguards in relation to the respective rights of the parties. The aim of the new standard form is to provide greater certainty, particularly with forms of lease currently used in Dubai which may not be particularly well drafted or conflict with existing laws.
The new form contains a number of standard clauses. However, there is the option to register additional terms or an addendum to the standard form. This will be of particular relevance to leases of commercial property which often have to cater for more complex, commercial arrangements. In its update on the standard tenancy contract form, Al Tamimi & Company states that any such additional terms or addendums will form an integral part of the contract and the parties to the agreement will be able to rely upon the provisions contained in them if a dispute is brought before the Rental Disputes Settlement Centre (RDSC).
“It is anticipated that the Ejari system and processes will gradually move fully online. This may allow landlords to register standard forms of additional terms which it can access, modify and generate online if required for specific leasing transactions.
“Once this system is fully implemented, it is anticipated that a separate addendum will not be accepted and the only accepted form of lease for registration will be one that is generated through such online system. Such a generated form will integrate the standard form lease and any additional terms into one bilingual document to be executed by the parties,” it added.
The law firm also stated that any such additional terms or addendum will have to be in a bilingual form and added that this is of particular significance as “the Arabic text will prevail in the event that a dispute under the lease is brought before the RDSC (irrespective of any prevailing language clause favouring the English text)”.
The standard form lease does not apply in relation to long leases that are older than 10 years which should be registered separately in the Real Property Register maintained by the DLD, Al Tamimi & Company explained.
Last week, Arabian Business reported that the DLD is working to introduce a new rental security deposit form, which will ease the process of refund for tenants.