Close this search box.

Drafting and Executing Wills in the UAE: Navigating Local Laws with Al Kabban & Associates

Home / Latest Developments / Drafting and Executing Wills in the UAE: Navigating Local Laws with Al Kabban & Associates
drafting a will

Crafting a comprehensive and legally-sound will is imperative to ensure that your family and assets are well protected in the event of your demise. This is especially significant for expats and investors residing in the UAE, where local inheritance laws can have far-reaching implications for wealth and estate distribution. Expert legal support from a reputable law firm like Al Kabban & Associates is indispensable in guiding you through the arguably complex process of drafting and executing a will in accordance with UAE law.

The UAE’s local inheritance laws follow Sharia law principles, which dictate asset distribution among family members according to predetermined formulas. These laws may not always align with an individual’s preferred estate distribution, making it essential to draft a legally valid will that reflects one’s wishes. Expats and non-Muslim residents can opt for wills executed under their home country’s laws or choose to draft a will specifically tailored to UAE law.

This comprehensive guide will provide insights into the critical aspects of drafting and executing wills in the UAE, the implications of local inheritance laws, and how Al Kabban & Associates expert legal team can assist you in protecting your family’s future and safeguarding your assets. By understanding the nuances of UAE will drafting and execution, you can confidently create a will that ensures a smooth and worry-free transition for your loved ones and manages your estate in a manner that aligns with your preferences.

With the help of Al Kabban & Associates experienced legal professionals, you can navigate the intricacies of UAE will drafting and execution, ensuring compliance with local laws while preserving your family’s financial stability and giving you peace of mind for the future.

Understanding the Implications of Sharia Law on Inheritance in the UAE

In the UAE, inheritance matters for Muslims are governed by Sharia law, which prescribes specific ratios and procedures for asset distribution among heirs. Some of the key points to consider regarding Sharia law inheritance scenarios include:

  • Predetermined Distribution Ratios: Family members receive a share of the deceased person’s assets based on fixed proportions. Male heirs typically receive double the share of their female counterparts.
  • No Proportion for Non-Muslims: Sharia law does not allow for non-Muslim heirs to inherit from a Muslim testator, potentially leading to unintended consequences for those with mixed-faith families, or non-Muslim business partners.
  • Absence of a Will: In the absence of a legally-valid will, non-Muslim expats may encounter their assets being distributed according to Sharia law, resulting in unequal inheritance among family members, contrary to their wishes.

Understanding these Sharia law implications is essential when crafting an effective will that ensures a fair distribution of assets according to your desires.

Drafting a Will Under Home Country Laws or as Per UAE Jurisdiction

Expats residing in the UAE can choose to draft a will that adheres to their home country’s laws or create an independent will that follows UAE regulations. Key considerations for both strategies include:

  • Home Country Laws: The UAE allows non-Muslims both to draft wills under their own country’s laws and to have such wills recognised in the UAE courts. However, this approach may require additional procedures, such as the legalisation of documents and translations, and may encounter jurisdictional issues, particularly concerning immovable property.
  • UAE Jurisdiction: Drafting a will specifically tailored to the UAE legal framework offers a clearer and more straightforward method to ensure the desired distribution of assets. Expats can have their wills registered with the UAE’s local courts or with specific entities, such as the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Wills Service Centre.

Navigating Critical Considerations in Will Drafting and Execution

Whether you choose to follow your home country’s laws or draft a UAE-based will, several critical considerations must be addressed to create a legally-valid and compliant will. These include:

  • Choosing an Executor: Appointing a trustworthy and capable executor is vital to ensuring your will is executed according to your intentions.
  • Guardianship for Minor Children: Parental guardianship must be considered for those with minor children, providing clear provisions to secure their care in case of an untimely demise.
  • Incorporating Real Estate Assets: Addressing real estate assets separately from other movable assets is crucial when drafting a will that addresses property investments in the UAE, as local laws governing real estate may differ in each Emirate.
  • Periodic Updates: Updating your will regularly to reflect changes in circumstances, parallel with the UAE’s evolving legal landscape, is essential for maintaining a valid and updated reflection of your wishes.

Al Kabban & Associates legal support can be invaluable in addressing these considerations to ensure your will is correctly drafted and executed.

Comprehensive Will Drafting and Execution Expertise from Al Kabban & Associates

Partnering with Al Kabban & Associates for your will drafting and execution needs can provide peace of mind and a secure future for your family. Our team of expert legal professionals offer:

  • In-Depth Knowledge of UAE Inheritance Laws: Al Kabban & Associates’s experienced professionals possess a profound understanding of the UAE’s inheritance laws, regulations, and procedures, ensuring compliance and accuracy in will drafting.
  • Customized Legal Support: Our dedicated team tailor their legal services to suit your unique requirements and wishes, ensuring a will that effectively safeguards your family and your assets.
  • Efficient Document Preparation and Execution: Our legal experts assist with preparing all necessary documentation and guiding you through each step of the will execution process, ensuring seamless registration and implementation.
  • Ongoing Legal Advice: Al Kabban & Associates can provide ongoing legal support and assistance, regularly reviewing and updating your will as necessary to reflect your evolving circumstances or changes in UAE law.


Drafting and executing a will in the UAE can seem like a daunting task, considering the complexities of local inheritance laws and their implications on your assets and family. However, with the right guidance and support from an established and reputable law firm in the UAE like Al Kabban & Associates, you can confidently create a legally-valid will that successfully distributes your wealth according to your wishes, ensuring a secure future for your family. By leveraging the expert legal knowledge of Al Kabban & Associates professionals, you can gain peace of mind, knowing that your family and assets will be well protected, regardless of any unforeseen situations in the future.


News & Articles

Scroll to Top