bounced cheques
New UAE law stipulates how to resolve cases involving bounced cheques. Image Credit: Gulf News Archive

Dubai: The UAE Cabinet has issued a Decree bringing about changes to the Commercial Transactions Law, including those related to bounced cheques. These come into force in 2022.

This will create mechanisms that will ensure the collection of payments through cheques, such as obliging banks to partially pay the amount after deducting the total amount available to the beneficiary. The Decree also makes bounced cheques an executive document to be executed directly by an appropriate judge in court.

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The changes in the Law also aim to bring about an avoidance of criminal lawsuits through encouraging reconciliation, and urging the payment of the value of the original cheque as the main condition for the dropping of a criminal lawsuit.

The amendments introduce several other penalties, including cancelling the cheque books of convicted persons and preventing them from obtaining new ones for a maximum period of five years. There will also be a halt to their professional activities.

Additional penalties will be introduced, including the suspension of licences to practice economic activities for six months.

The amendments also cover the opening of joint accounts. If one of the joint account holders dies or loses legal control, the other holder must notify the bank within 10 days from the date of death. The bank must, from the date of notification, limit the ability to withdraw from the joint account within a party’s share of the account balance on the day of death or loss of eligibility.