Federal Decree-Law No. (40) of 2023 on Mediation and Conciliation in Civil and Commercial Disputes

We, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates,

Having reviewed:

  • The Constitution;
  • Federal Law No. (1) of 1972, on the Competences of Ministries and the Powers of Ministers, as amended;
  • Federal Law No. (17) of 2016, Establishing Mediation and Conciliation Centers in Civil and Commercial Disputes, as amended;
  • Federal Law No. (6) of 2021, on Mediation for Settlement of Civil and Commercial Disputes; and
  • Based on the Proposal submitted by the Minister of Justice and approved by the Cabinet,

Hereby enact the following Decree-Law:

Chapter I General Provisions

Article 1 Definitions

For the purpose of applying the provisions of this Decree-Law, the following words and expressions shall bear the meanings assigned thereto respectively, unless the context requires otherwise:

State: The United Arab Emirates.
Council: The Federal Judicial Council.
Department: The Federal Judicial Inspection Department.
Center: A Mediation and Conciliation Center.
Parties: Parties to disputes referred to Mediation or Conciliation.
Mediation: An optional and alternative method for amicable settlement of civil and commercial disputes that have arisen or might arise between Parties to a legal contractual or non-contractual relationship, by engaging a neutral third party (Mediator), whether such Mediation is based on the mutual consent of the parties involved or a court order.
Court-Ordered Mediation: Mediation intended to resolve a dispute after having first resorted to litigation under a referral decision by the Competent Court and at any stage of the case, whether at such court’s proposal accompanied by the Parties’ approval, or at the Parties’ request.
Consensual Mediation: Mediation that is directly sought by the Parties involved to have a dispute resolved before resorting to litigation, in pursuance of the Mediation Agreement.
Mediation Agreement: A written agreement between the Parties to resort to Mediation to have their dispute resolved, whether such agreement takes place before or after the dispute.
Mediator: A natural or legal person engaged by the Parties or the Center to perform a mediation mission for amicable resolution of their dispute; provided that such Mediator is listed in the Center’s Mediator List.
Mediator List: Lists created by the Department or a local judicial authority, as the case may be, and in which names of registered Mediators are listed.
Private Mediator: A natural or legal person engaged by the Parties to perform a mediation mission for amicable resolution of their dispute, without being listed in the Mediator Lists.
Mediation Costs: Administrative expenses for the Mediation and fees payable to the Mediator for the Mediation.
Mediator’s Fees: The remuneration payable to the Mediator to perform their mission.
Competent Court: The trial court having the jurisdiction to hear the case.
Supervising Judge: The judge supervising the Center.
Conciliation: An alternative method for amicable resolution of disputes that must be sought before a case is registered in the instances defined under Article (27) hereunder, or while the case is being heard before the court at the request of the Parties in the instances other than the above ones; where a neutral third party (Conciliator) is engaged in an attempt to reach a settlement agreement signed by, and binding on, the Parties.
Conciliator: A person appointed to, or assigned at the Center to settle a dispute by way of Conciliation.
Settlement: Reconciliation reached by the Parties through Mediation or Conciliation, and the minutes thereof shall be approved by the Supervising Judge.
Settlement Agreement: A document executed by the Mediator or Conciliator and signed by the Parties, and sets out the settlement reached by the Parties for amicable resolution of their dispute, in whole or in part.
Mediation and Conciliation E-Platform: An electronic system through which all Mediation and Conciliation procedures are made.