Everything You Need To Know About Wills & Probate in Dubai

Wills and probate are necessary documents for transferring a person’s estate after death. This is true for non-Muslims, too, but before the Dubai International Financial Centre established a wills and probate registry, these documents were subject to dispute and had to be appealed. These appeals were both uncertain and expensive. Fortunately, the UAE has adopted the principle of “law of nationality” for a succession of estates.


One of the many benefits of wills and probate in Dubai is the ease of transfer of assets. Non-Muslim expatriates can register a will under the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) jurisdiction. Once a will has been registered, executors can apply for a grant of probate from the DIFC. This will bypass Dubai Courts and bring a great deal of certainty to the process.


In the UAE, it is possible to execute your will through a government-approved registry. The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) has implemented a new procedure for wills and probate based on common law. This change has many benefits, including simplifying the distribution process for non-Muslims and addressing cultural diversity. Here are the main differences between the UAE and other countries. Let’s look at each of them separately.

DIFC wills and probate registry

To register a Will with the DIFC Wills and Probate Registry, a Testator must sign the document formally in front of a Registry officer. At least one other witness is also required, but this person should not be a beneficiary of the Will. The DIFC wills and probate registry employs innovative processes and stores all registered Wills electronically to minimize the risk of damage or tampering.

Registration process

If you wish to register a will in Dubai, you need to meet certain criteria. To be eligible, you must be a non-Muslim, be over 21 years old, and have assets in the UAE. You must also include guardianship clauses that include UAE residents. However, if you are an Emirati resident, you can register a will through the DIFC Courts.

Sharia law

In the UAE, wills and probate follow Sharia law. However, a will is not always required. If a person died intestate or without a valid will, the UAE courts would follow Sharia law when deciding on a person’s assets and inheritance. A non-Muslim ex-pat dying intestate will have their assets frozen. If there is no Will, the family can apply for probate, which is transferring the deceased’s estate to the deceased’s loved ones.

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