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 often face legal challenges in 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 key issues such as 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 most mature educational markets in the region making it a draw for investors, providers, and students. Its scale and ambition remain undimmed, in today’s educational landscape, high education institutes 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-around support and services to the education sector has been an essential and vital part of ours all legal services for the education sector.
Our 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 act as legal consultants for our clients on a wide range of legal matters, which include hotel management agreements, hotel services agreements (pre and post-opening), hotel suppliers’ agreements, suppliers’ XML agreements, and suppliers’ extranet agreements, hotel 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 on 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 a good chance for administering authority to breach the privacy limits of individuals and others. People are much more aware of their privacy and digital rights nowadays.
Our legal experts have long-standing professional expertise in 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. The understanding approach adopted by data protection agencies in handling cyber security issues is the key to understanding overall procedures and mitigating risks of non-compliance. We maintain close links with regulators and are fully aware of their working methodology which helps deliver legal service which is pragmatic, business oriented, and clear.
OIL AND GAS
The oil and gas industry is known for its complicated legal issues. These issues are a result of; complex construction projects, the persistent danger of environmental accidents and personal injury that may occur, ownership of resources, the effectiveness of sales, purchase agreements, fuel storage, and also, transportation arrangements.
Hence, MEALC is well known for its continuous integrated practice covering all necessary areas of the oil and gas sector. Accordingly, our team has been acting as the Legal Advisor for several governmental entities, independent and national oil companies while working on major transactions.
Moreover, MEALC has been listed in a panel of Law Firms at ADNOC Distribution, acting as its Legal Advisor and Consultant on various major transactions.
Internationally speaking, our legal practice ranges from the construction of LPG storage and filling plant in Zanzibar to distribution of crude oil worldwide.
Besides being a member of the International Chamber of Commerce ICC-UAE, MEALF is a member of the 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, and 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, sports, and municipal sectors in the following areas:
Legislative Review to enhance or update the existing laws and internal regulations to fit with the current government policies and the best practices at national, regional, and international levels.
Drafting new laws and regulations or reviewing drafts made by federal or local governmental entities.
Drafting specialized contracts to fit certain requirements.
Conducting legal research, and legal studies and handling the legal aspects of any project.
Providing customized legal training.
Other legal services are 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 in 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 a 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 include;
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 an 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 environmental regulations. We have extensive experience in dealing with all claims related to shipping contracts, bills of lading, letters of credit, 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 that might occur from 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 a deep understanding of our region's business and legal environment as our lawyers work in UAE for a long time and worked on drafting legislation related to Commercial Companies and foreign businesses. This makes 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 a leading Intellectual Property (IP) team comprised 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 on the UAE Labour law
Post-employment restrictive covenants
Human resource view policy, including review of the employee handbook, manual and document retention.
Redundancies and workforce reductions and severance agreements.
The authorization of a 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 agreements, educational documents, or birth or death certificates.
We notarize /attest passports only after observing the original passport as well as the passport bearer.
We charge 550 AED for the first copy notarization and the second copy will be 100 AED only.
Legal Audit Services
Legal Audit is a service that 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 training, or assistance in the drafting of complex contracts, our legal team shall assist in those as well.
We provide Legal Tax advice to:
• Leading respectful multinational corporations, banks, financial institutions, governments, private equity groups, investment funds, real estate investment houses, joint ventures, and other national, and international organizations.
• Our tax expertise combine with litigation experience shows that we have a unique tax litigation capability.
We advised clients across an unlimited range of industries including:
Brand SYNC registration.
Legal translation is defined as any document used in a legal system and written in accordance with the UAE’s applicable laws. The legal translation covers a wide range of documents, depending on the services and needs they address. Certificates (marriage, birth, etc.), proxies, employment contracts and agreements, testaments, affidavits, and confidentiality agreements are among the most common.
Furthermore, MEALC is a well-known translation firm in Abu Dhabi that offers all kinds of professional translation services by native and professional translators. We are a Legal Consultancy that has been accredited and certified by the UAE Ministry of Justice and the UAE Government.
Insurance and Reinsurance
Whereas the Insurance Authority Board of Directors Decision No. 26 of 2020 amended some provisions of the Insurance Authority Board of Directors Decision No. 33 of 2019 regarding the establishment of committees for the settlement of insurance disputes.
As legal advisors, MEALC specializes in providing advisory and dispute settlement services of the highest quality to insurance companies and their clients operating in both established and emerging markets, based on the latest judgments and decisions.
We cover a wide range of insurance policies covering all types or risks, solving all claims arising from, losses of financial institutions and disaster losses in matters of insurance within mergers and acquisitions and security of lenders, to medical malpractice and health insurance.
Hence, we offer an unmatched depth of coverage and defense capabilities across every line of insurance and reinsurance business such as:
• Transportation and aviation sectors
• Banks and Finance
• Engineering and Construction.
• Financial services
• Projects and energy
• Real estate
• All types of marine ships
(hull, machinery, protection, compensation)
• Mediation and reinsurance
• Global compliance
• Insurance portfolio conversion issues
• Technology Securing
• Responsibility for Employment Practice
• Professional Responsibility
• Responsibility for the products
Our team deals with all major insurance sectors in the United Arab Emirates throughout the region and internationally in a range of ordinary and substitute litigation.
Our leading dispute resolution practices cover litigation in all forms of alternative solutions, as we have the rights of the public before the courts of all jurisdictions in which we operate.
Hence, our experienced dedicated team handles all insurance-related matters, from the smallest claim to the most complex loss.