OUR PRACTICE AREAS
Construction projects are often complex and involve large investments and multiple stakeholders. Such stakeholders can face onerous legal issues and requirements pertaining to tender offer and acceptance, engineers’ and architects’ design, inspection and supervision services failures, delay and impact claims, change-order disputes, changed-site condition allegations, force-majeure events, insurance and bonding claims, inspection and supervision claims, and building deficiency claims.
Our team has been involved with some of the UAE’s most ambitious construction and engineering projects. With expertise across all sectors, we offer a full range of services to ensure your development project hits its financial and completion targets while securing adequate rights of recourse in case of failure or delays.
Companies face legal challenges to their operating structure due to rapidly changing corporate establishment and governance regulations, which promoters and board members must be prepared to navigate.
We serve as a trusted counsel to both promoters and boards. We help identify and resolve critical legal challenges. Our corporate legal services cover all legal aspects of a company’s existence—from its formation, governance, changes to its constitution, share structure, initial public offering, re-organization and agreements amongst its stakeholders, and to eventual dissolution.
Today, commercial activity is at its peak and an overwhelming amount of goods and services are traded on a daily basis. At times, conflicts and disputes arise.Traders are faced with these key issues: pre-contractual liability during negotiations, understanding the applicable law for cross-border transactions, enforcement of informal representations, determining the competent jurisdiction for dispute resolution, and ensuring conformity of goods and services to the agreed specifications and payment schedules.
We understand how important it is for clients to receive clear and reliable advice so they can focus on running their businesses. Commercial disputes can be expensive when pursuing or defending a claim, both in terms of cost and time. But with our expertise, clients can mitigate cost, save time and diminish stress.
The UAE is one of the more mature education markets in the region and remains a draw for investors, providers, and students. Its scale and ambition remain undimmed, in today’s educational landscape, high education institute and schools at all levels face stiff competition and ever-changing standards. With vast experience in labor law, dispute resolution, real-estate and intellectual property, our lawyers help manage the administrative details so educators can focus on the big picture.
Working on all aspects of a client’s education business, we draw on our long track record of success in this sector to deliver pragmatic, innovative, and commercial advice. therefore, offering all-round support and services to the education sector has been an essential and vital part of ours all legal services for the education sector.
Ours well-experienced, refined, and innovative education lawyers have been serving a large number of governmental -federal or local- educational institutions, educational employers and employees, and other people and agencies associated with the education sector.
Our education services include:
MOU, NDA, SLA, joint venture agreements, team management and collaboration agreements
Curriculum development agreements
Training program agreements
School Management Agreement
Charter school agreement
Protection of intellectual property rights
Compliance and investigations
Drafting and reviewing administrative Policies
All Regulatory Compliances with Governing Bodies
Technology Transfers and Innovations
School franchise agreement
The sports industry has grown tremendously over the last few decades, and sports contracts have become immensely complex with large investments at stake. Stakeholders need to negotiate contracts with players, settle sponsorship contracts, comply with anti-doping laws and regulations and organize, develop and maintain sports facilities.
MEALC has an established reputation for its expertise in local Sports Law. Pursuant to a recent collaboration with a specialized Swiss-based international law firm, Monteneri Sports Law LLC, we have attained commanding capabilities to cater to all the legal needs of stakeholders (public and private) of the UAE football industry, locally and regionally.
Organizations are now increasingly aware of the importance of training their employees on basic legal issues affecting their operations and risk management. This practice helps to lessen the risk of being held liable for management errors. At the same time, it enables them to make legally sound decisions to avoid danger zones, develop a consistent approach in handling operational and risk management matters, and meet the demands of changing legislation and its varying interpretations.
MEALC offers workshops for legal training through its sister company, Edraak Training and Consultancy LLC, in the following areas:
• Updates on legal developments
• Legislation drafting skills
• Drafting business contracts
• Managing contracts and handling sub-contracts
• Contracts’ common pitfalls and how to avoid them
• Drafting special contracts like PPP, Franchise, etc.
• Corporate governance
• Corporate Social Responsibility (“CSR”)
• Business ethics training
• Ethics compliance management
The tourism industry has grown tremendously throughout the world—especially so in the UAE. The regulatory framework for the tourism industry is also becoming ever more complex, with large cash flow raising multiple legal disputes. Additionally, businesses in the hospitality sector face claims for duty of care to their guests.
MEALC provides regular legal assistance to leading businesses in the tourism industry, including owners of tourism developments and tourism agencies locally and internationally. We counselour clients on a wide range of legal matters, which include hotel management agreements, hotel services agreement (pre and post opening),hotel suppliers’ agreement, suppliers’ XML agreements and suppliers’ extranet agreements, hotels O&M agreements, global sales and marketing agreements for airlines and theme parks.
Global concerns for cyber security are increasing as numerous cases of data and network intrusion within large multinational companies have been reported leading to severe business losses. As our dependence over IT and computerized databases is increasing, there is an ever-growing need for privacy and data protection. While implementing security or outreach measures, there is good chance for administering authority to breach privacy limits of individuals and others. People are much more aware about their privacy and digital rights nowadays.
Our legal experts have long standing professional expertise of data, cyber crimes, and IT security matters based on experience gained from working with multiple multinational clients and helping them cope with cyber security matters legally. We believe that we can help you steer through local regulatory hurdles, enabling you to achieve global objectives. Understanding approach adopted by data protection agency in handling cyber security issues is the key towards understanding overall procedures and mitigating risks of non-compliance. We maintain close links with regulatory and are fully aware of their working methodology which helps deliver legal service which is pragmatic, business oriented and clear.
OIL AND GAS
Complicated legal issues have always surrounded the oil and gas industry. These issues are a result of complex construction projects, the persistent danger of environmental accidents and personal injury, ownership of resources, effectiveness of sales and purchase agreements and fuel storage, and transportation arrangements.
MEALC’s integrated practice continues to be at the forefront of the oil and gas sector. Our team has advised governmental entities, independent oil companies, national oil companies and oilfield services companies on major transactions. We are listed in a panel of law firms at ADNOC for Distribution. Likewise, we have been advising ADNOC for Distribution on several of its transactions. Our international assignments range from the construction of LPG storage and filling plant in Zanzibar to the distribution of crude oil worldwide.
Besides being a member of International Chamber of Commerce ICC-UAE, MEALF is a member of IR Global network which enable MEALF to give you access to expert arbitration lawyers throughout the World.
We represent a broad range of clients in various ADCCAC, ADGMAC, DIFCLCIA, DIAC arbitrations.
MEALF’s lawyers are multilingual, culturally diverse, and admitted to practice in a wide variety of jurisdictions including England, France, Swiss, Croatia, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. We can conduct arbitrations in either English or Arabic.
REGULATORY AND COMPLIANCE
Partners at MEALC have extensive experience in working with the UAE government, semi-government authorities and corporations. With our unrivaled expertise and familiarity with the specific needs of Abu Dhabi government entities, we have all the resources to advise the industrial, educational, sport, and municipal sectors on the following areas:
Legislative Review to enhance or update the existing laws and internal regulations to fit with the current governmental policies and the best practices at national, regional, and international levels.
Drafting new laws and by-regulations or reviewing drafts made by federal or local governmental entities.
Drafting specialized contracts to fit certain requirements.
Conducting legal researches, legal studies and handling the legal aspects of any project.
Providing customized legal training.
Other legal services customized to fit the demands.
BANKING AND FINANCE
In today’s financial markets, only businesses that manage their risks through effective legal agreements and contracts obtain secure financing. The borrower will need to review the practicality of sanctions for failure to operate within the standards required, the payment structure for financial penalties, and any further sanctions for breach. Lenders will seek to have trigger events, which allow them additional rights and powers when they occur.
The MEALC team has a wealth of experience in advising borrowers, funds and financial institutions on a diverse range of financial transactions. We offer our clients exceptional service on all legal aspects. Additionally, we advise clients routinely on their financing agreements, subrogation agreements and security documents. Currently,we are advising one of our clients on a very complex and specific syndicate revolving loan and guarantee issuance facility.
Litigation can prove to be expensive and time-consuming. The involvement of experts can and will greatly decrease the expense and time spent on a case. That is why our lawyers are well prepared at every trial. They know every aspect of the case and all the associated documents. In addition, our knowledge and experience and understanding of the local laws, regulations and culture give us a competitive advantage and guarantee the best representation for clients.
MEALC’s litigation division is composed of highly qualified jurists with various and comprehensive expertise and many years of practice. MEALC’s litigation division pleads and defends clients in all proceedings and cases in which we are legally assigned as attorneys before all judicial authorities in the UAE, whether as plaintiffs or defendants, and before all courts of different types and levels.
Our lawyers have combined experience of more than 40 years in handling and managing significant, complex and high profile litigation for all kinds of commercial, civil and criminal cases which includes commercial and trade disputes, property matters, employment disputes, family disputes, banking matters, civil claims for medical malpractices. Our litigation services includes;
Representation in lawsuits (commercial - civil - criminal - labor)
Execution of court rulings
Commercial arbitration and dispute settlement
Judicial warning services
The need to diversify revenue streams for economies across the region has resulted in a renewed emphasis on trade and increased focus on seaport expansion in the UAE.
We are well equipped to guide them on all aspects of Maritime and Transport Law. This includes: formulating shipbuilding contracts, procuring insurance, availing financing, establishing claims and negotiating settlements, regulations specific to ports, docks and terminals, and implementing environment regulations. We have extensive experience in dealing with all claims related to shipping contracts, bill of lading, letter of credits, insurance, marine accidents, and environmental pollution.
Commercial real estate transactions can be lucrative. With increasingly complex, highly structured and more sophisticated financing arrangements, these transactions require in depth investigation to ascertain legal requirements for the intended use of the estate,determine any existing or threatened liabilities accruing from or attached to the estate, and to highlight legal risks for any violation of law that may exist prior to its acquisition. We navigate our clients in these transactions from the very beginning (conduction of detailed legal due diligence) till the end (negotiating and finalizing the deal)
Our team is experienced in advising investors, banks and privately and publicly owned developers on all legal aspects of acquisition, financing and disposal of freehold and leasehold land, and property management.
Manufacturers face fresh challenges every year. At MEALC, we are proud of our lawyers’ wealth of experience in advising on all issues related to establishing industrial projects in Abu Dhabi. These include: negotiating leases or Musataha contracts with industrial zones and free zone developers, industrial licensing and HSE requirements, industrial building permits, financial lease for production lines, customs duties exemptions, local content requirements, registration and protection of intellectual property rights related to manufactured products inside and outside the UAE, as well anti-dumping claims and government subsidies, among many others.
SETTING UP BUSINESS
We have deep understanding of our region's business and legal environment as our lawyers work in UAE for long time and worked on drafting legislations related to Commercial Companies and foreign businesses. This make Our international and regional clients gain the benefit of our long-standing presence in the UAE, which corresponds to a wealth of knowledge and contacts in relation to the structuring and conduct of business.
A large part of our corporate offering consists of the provision of legal advice in relation to the formation of all types of commercial companies, foreign companies branches and representative offices, and related agency and sponsorship arrangements, both onshore and offshore.
Intellectual property is always a matter of concern for individuals and corporations, therefore, to meet our clients’ needs, MEALC retains leading Intellectual Property (IP) team comprises of specialist lawyers and experienced trademark, copyright, patent and design professionals. Our team routinely handles many of the most significant IP matters across the Middle East, representing major global and regional brands.
Our practice covers:
Enforcement & Litigation
Patents & Designs (R&D and Innovations)
IP Audit and IP Transactions
EMPLOYMENT AND LABOR
The team offers a comprehensive service to our clients on all aspects of employment law ranging from routine advice to litigation and everything in between. Our lawyers are extremely knowledgeable in all aspects of UAE Labour laws and current practices and have considerable regional experience in dealing with local and federal laws. Our clients include local and international businesses across a multitude of sectors.
Our team is highly qualified to provide the full spectrum of employment support, from policies, procedures and contracts to high level employee disputes through local UAE courts.
The firm advises a wide range of clients on employment law. Due to the nature of this practice, many client names remain confidential; however, the firm’s roster in this area includes private companies across all industry sectors, be they multinational, regional or local UAE entities.
We advise on all aspects of employment law issues including:
Drafting and reviewing employment contracts and secondment agreements of all categories
Consultancy and other types of employment agreements;
Disciplinary and dismissal procedures;
All forms of employment disputes;
Employee data protection;
Immigration and residency;
Ministry of Labour compliance;
Redundancy and termination management; and
End of service gratuity settlements.
Advice of the UAE Labour law
Post-employment restrictive covenants
Human resource view policy, including review of employee handbook, manual and document retention.
Redundancies and work force reductions and severances agreement.
The authorization of notary has been granted to provide Private Notary services by the UAE Government. Previously, only designated public officials located in government buildings across UAE could notarize documents for official purposes, however, designated UAE lawyers may now provide this service to UAE based individuals or companies. Middle East Alliance is officially authorized to notarize the passports.
The Private Notary service is an initiative to privatize certain services to make them more convenient for businesses and residents in UAE, in recognition of UAE’s growing population and the need for a wider range of services.
We are not authorized to notarize Affidavits, settlement agreement, educational documents, birth or death certificates.
We notarize /attest passports only after observing the original passport as well as the passport barer.
We charge 550 AED for first copy notarization and second copy will be in 100 AED only.
Legal Audit Services
Legal Audit is a service which MEALC is a pioneer in and has never been done in the UAE before. The Legal Audit service encompasses around performing a gap analysis by identifying gaps in the in-house legal setup of a company, and after thorough consultation with our legal experts, plugging that gap by providing solutions, expert training and workshops to ensure that the in-house legal department is abreast with all latest developments in law and is able to better safeguard the company’s legal interest.
The real value of a Legal Audit is less in what is discovered, and more in what the company does with the Audit results. Once the report is published, the company’s management shall be free to decide on how to act upon and implement the findings. If there are any follow up work or assessments required after the report is provided in order to implement the recommendations, such as legal trainings, or assistance in drafting of complex contracts, our legal team shall assist in those as well.