Article 11, Clause 4 of the Decisions No.25 of 2018 on rental disputes committees and procedures was issued earlier this month by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department (ADJD).
It stipulates that rental contracts registered with Abu Dhabi Municipality shall have the status of "executory instruments" through which the Rental Dispute Committees will allow landlords to directly involve enforcement agents and take action against tenants that have failed to pay rent.
The eviction notice will be issued after the rental dispute committees have heard from all parties.
According to authorities, the rental dispute committees will issue a decision within a minimum of two days and a maximum of three weeks.
The tenant shall be notified to pay the rent arrears within a period not exceeding 21 days from the date of notification for residential rents, and 30 days for commercial and industrial rents.
The new decision applies only to properties with lease contracts registered with the Department of Municipalities in Abu Dhabi.
"The aim of the rental dispute committees is to quickly resolve disputes between the landlord and a tenant, save their time and money and also shorten proceedings in first instance and appeal courts," Counsellor Dr. Adel El Achabi, Manager of Enforcement Administration at the Abu Dhabi Judicial Department and Appeals said during a press conference on Monday.
"This is the simplest process and it is aimed at reducing the time that has been spent in courts. It is intended to protect everyone including landlords and tenants."
Eviction only possible in case of non-payment of rent
According to El Achabi, all rental disputes between the lessor (landlord) and the lessee (tenant) are settled by the committees to resolve the rental disputes.
"Only in case of non-payment of wages due in the leases registered with the competent municipal department, the consideration of these contracts as executive bonds gives the lessor the possibility of resorting to execution through quick procedures that preserve the rights of both parties," he said.
El Achabi explained that the landlord shall first submit to the dispute settlement committees an application to obtain the executive stamp, which he shall receive after verifying the fulfilment of the conditions.
The application shall be submitted in accordance with the contract signed in the executive form, according to the official.
"The tenant shall be notified to pay the rent arrears within a period not exceeding 21 days from the date of notification for residential rents, and 30 days from the date of notification for commercial and industrial properties," he said.
"If the tenant fails to pay the rent arrears during the said period, the execution proceedings (eviction ruling) shall be initiated against him."
El Achabi noted that the tenant that has failed to pay within the given grace period will be issued another notice that will be handed to them physically, and ordering them to leave the house or property within a period of three days.
"If the tenant pays arrears within the period specified, or before that, the execution shall be permanently stayed. The execution judge, shall adjudicate any dispute arising due to a payment issueby judgments that can be contested in the court of appeal and cassation," said El Achabi.
Previously, landlords had to go through a lengthy legal process which could take up to six months so as to obtain an enforcement notice from court.
The official noted that the new regulation will contribute to reducing the waste of judicial time by limiting the extent of the flow of cases to the committees of settling rental disputes in cases where the real dispute is present.
"This will have a positive impact on the investment and the business sector, as well as in real estate sector in particular," said El Achabi.
-Maximum of 21 days grace period to clear rent arrears for residential homes.
-Maximum of 30 days grace period to clear rent arrears for commercial and industrial properties.
-Eviction only possible if the tenant fails to pay the rent arrears.
-Three days given to tenant to vacate the house or premises after the final eviction notice.
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