Most Read Contributor in United Arab Emirates, January 2017
Question: I want to divorce my wife and have
some questions. I have to travel a fair bit for work, and she is
not completing her duties as a housewife, our flat is a mess. She
does not cook any more, does not clean and she's hardly awake
to take our daughter to the school bus. The child is trailing
behind at school because she's missed so many days. My wife has
a physical illness, so I understand that this can make her tired,
but this is exaggerated. I tried to be supportive and employ a
nanny four hours a day and a maid as well but, on top of that, she
is ungrateful. Recently, on top of the usual verbal abuse, she
started hitting me and insulting me in front of our children. I
have a medical report of the incident and she has since done it
again, also throwing our boy, who bumped his head. I really
don't know what to do any more. My concern is that she gets
custody of the kids and I know she won't take proper care of
Answer: You have the right to file for divorce
per Article 117 of the Personal Status Law No 5 of 2005. The
grounds for divorce would be: damaging family by neglecting the
children and not emotionally and morally supporting the family and
children. You also have the right to report physical abuse to the
police in an effort to restraint her from physically abusing you.
It is true that custody of children usually goes to the mother, as
long as the children are under a certain age (boy 11, girl 13),
however, you have the right to claim custody based on the fact that
the mother is unsuitable or unfit to take care of the children. One
of the factors, per Article 143, is that the custodian be capable
of bringing up, protecting and caring for the child. The
court's paramount concern is usually the best interest of the
child, therefore as long as you are able to prove that the mother
is unfit or unsuitable to raise the children, you should be able to
Question: I am an Asian woman and I think my
husband is having sex with a woman in Dubai. I don't have any
proof yet but many people have told me already. Can I file a case
Answer: You have the right to file a criminal
case against him for the offence of adultery, per Article 356 of
UAE Federal Law No 3 of 1987, the Penal Code, only if you have
proof that he has been having a physical relationship with another
woman in the UAE. If you are planning to proceed with criminal
charges against your husband and his girlfriend you should provide
any kind of evidence you have, including witnesses (testimony of
two male witnesses and one female witness), photos, videos,
emails/messages exchanged or a letter of admission. In general, the
criminal court has full discretionary powers to evaluate and
determine whether or not your husband committed adultery based on
the subjective evidence you produce.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Question: My husband is planning to divorce me on a very petty issue. Do you think Dubai Courts would allow a divorce on these grounds, even though it's a matter that could have been resolved between us?
Chief justice and Bar Association have endorsed legislative proposal that would clarify outdated and confused concepts such as child custody, care and control, but government inertia may hold up its enactment
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