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criminal law


November 18, 2017



What is the punishment for a bounced cheque now that there is no jail time?

Question: I have a small shop in Dubai. I gave a cheque of Dh150,000 to one of my suppliers. Due to lack of cash flow I was not able to honour the cheque. I heard that cheque cases now are not punishable by jail sentences. Is it true?

Answer:In Dubai, under law No 1 of 2017 called the Criminal Order Law, the cheque cases, if they are less than Dh200,000, shall be punishable by a fine only. Fines vary between Dh2,000 and Dh10,000 depending on the cheque value. Such decisions could be given by the prosecution within a very short amount of time without any need to refer you to criminal courts. However, you have to bear in mind that the complainant still has the right to file a civil case against you to claim the cheque value and an interest of 12 percent starting from the cheque date.

They could also ask the court to force you to pay the charges and legal costs. The complainant also has the right to request the civil courts to stop your company bank account up to the amount of Dh200,000 until the civil case is decided. They may also request the civil courts to issue an urgent travel ban against you until the civil court issues its final decision and you repay the money.

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