Bounced cheques can result in civil court cases, UAE authorities say

If the civil court rules in favour of the plaintiff, a 12 percent interest rate is added to the value of the bounced cheque
Bounced cheques can result in civil court cases, UAE authorities say
According to Legal Order Law No 1 of 2017 – which came into effect in December of that year – individuals facing bounced cheque cases worth AED 200,000 or less can be punished without the case being referred to judges. In such cases, fines go up to a maximum of AED 10,000.
By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Thu 15 Aug 2019 09:03 AM

Bounced cheque cases in the UAE can result in fines of between AED 2,000 and AED 10,000 and civil cases file against those who issue them, according to Dubai judicial authorities.

According to Legal Order Law No 1 of 2017 – which came into effect in December of that year – individuals facing bounced cheque cases worth AED 200,000 or less can be punished without the case being referred to judges. In such cases, fines go up to a maximum of AED 10,000.

However, in an interview with Gulf News, Dubai Courts Judge Ayman Al Hakam said that the receiver of a bounced cheque still has the right to take the case to the Civil Court.

“The issuer of the bounced cheque may think all that he needs to do is pay a fine if he can’t settle the case,” he said. “But the victim can still exercise his rights by opening a civil case against the issuer of the cheque for the amount of the cheque plus compensation. Bounced cheque cases don’t end with paying the fine.”

The judge added that victims have three years to file a civil case from the time the issuer of the bounced cheque was convicted and fined.

In the Gulf News report, Gassan Al Daye, the head of litigation Middle East with law firm Charles Russell Speechlys, said that if the Civil Court rules in favour of the plaintiff, a 12 percent interest rate will be added to the value of the cheque, beginning from its issue date.

“The court can also order the accused to pay legal charges,” he said, adding that the plaintiff can also request the court to freeze the assets of the accused.

Dubai Public Prosecution figures show that the penal order legislation has allowed officials to settle a total of 30,618 cases between November 2017 and the end of last year. Of these, bounced cheque cases of up to AED 200,000 represent 87 percent of cases.

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