Law Update


Federal Law No. 5 of 1985


Federal Law No. 5 of 1985 concerning the issuance of the civil transactions law of the United Arab Emirates.


Part 1 Provisions relating to the application and effect of the law in time and place

Section 1 The Law and its application

Article 1.-

The legislative provisions shall apply to all matters dealt with by those provisions in the letter and in the spirit . There shall be no scope for innovative reasoning in the case of provisions of definitive import . If the judge finds no provision in this Law, he must pass judgment according to the Islamic sharīʿa. Provided that he must have regard to the choice of the most appropriate solution from the schools of Imam Malik and Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, and if none is found there, then from the schools of Imam al-Shafiʿi and Imam Abu Hanifa as dictated by expediency.

If the judge does not find the solution there, then he must render judgment in accordance with custom, but provided that the custom is not in conflict with public order or morals, and if a custom is particular to a given emirate, then the effect of it will apply to that emirate.

Article 2.-

The rules and principles of Islamic jurisprudence (fiqh) shall be relied upon in the understanding, construction and interpretation of these provisions.

Article 3.-

Public order shall be deemed to include matters relating to personal status such as marriage, inheritance, and lineage, and matters relating to sovereignty, freedom of trade, the circulation of wealth, rules of private ownership and the other rules and foundations upon which society is based, in such a manner as not to conflict with the definitive provisions and fundamental principles of the Islamic Shari’ah.

Section 2 The application of the Law with regard to time

Article 4.-

(1) It shall not be permissible to repeal a legislative provision or to suspend the operation of it save by a subsequent legislative provision expressly so enacting or which includes a provision inconsistent with the earlier legislative provision or which rearranges the subject matter the rules for which are already laid down in such legislation.