UAE new laws will be fully enacted from January 2, 2022. Reform eases restrictions on extra-marital relationships.
27 November 2021, 12:00 AM
31 December 2021, 12:00 AM
His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, approved a wide-ranging reform of the country’s legal system, which aims to strengthen economic, investment and commercial opportunities.
The UAE has ratified a new and updated Federal Crime and Punishment Law, a move intended to further develop and refine the legislative system of the UAE, the Government Media Office said Saturday.
The new legislation offers enhanced protections for women and domestic servants, strengthens public safety and security provisions and eases restrictions on extra-marital relationships and it will be fully enacted starting from January 2, 2022.
The new law includes the amendment and revision of a number of areas of legislation, including new criminal penalties for public disorder offences and the de-criminalization of a number of behaviours.
• One of the most important provisions newly introduced by the Crime and Punishment Law is that the law is applied to anyone who commits, or participates in, a premeditated murder that occurs against a citizen of the UAE even if the crime takes place outside the country.
• The new law effectively decriminalizes consensual relationships out of wedlock, providing that any child conceived as a result of the relationship is acknowledged and will be cared for.
• The law also punishes with imprisonment for a period of no less than six months, consensual extra-marital intercourse with a person aged over 18 years, noting that a criminal case for this crime is only instituted on the basis of a complaint from the husband or guardian. In all cases, the husband or guardian has the right to waive the complaint, and the waiver entails the expiration of the criminal case or the suspension of the execution of the penalty, as the case may be.