Dubai has very well defined traffic rules which have to be strictly adhered to. The traffic police in Dubai is highly efficient and ensures that no rule violated goes unnoticed which in turn keeps the road users on alert in following the traffic rules and therefore ensures the safety for everybody on the road. One of the most common and the most important traffic regulations is the ‘driving license’. As most of the population in the Dubai is made up of expatriates not all hold a Dubai driving license. Also as Dubai is a tourist hub, a lot of the tourists visiting Dubai rent a car to look around the city and explore the United Arab Emirates. The license held by these tourists is not a Dubai Driving License but they are permitted to drive in the country on the basis of the driving license they are issued in their own home country. But this is not for all tourists; only tourists from countries which have an agreement with Dubai to the effect of allowing their driving license are allowed to drive on this basis.

Every person who is a resident of Dubai and wishes to drive here must apply for a driving license as it is prohibited to drive without a license. Any body found to drive without a license is subjected to a hefty fine. It is not only a duty put on one’s self to refrain from driving when not holding a valid driving license but it is also the responsibility of the owner of the vehicle not to allow any body not holding a valid driving license to drive their vehicle. Further it is essential to verify that the vehicle one is about to drive is permitted on the license held by that person. A person holding a license for an automatic LMV cannot drive a heavy vehicle on the basis of that license.

This article discusses the conditions to be fulfilled for application for a driving license in Dubai and the provisions providing for the same are in the Federal Law No. 21 of 1995 Concerning Traffic (hereinafter referred to as ‘the law’).

The law has excluded the people falling under the following classes of people from applying for a Dubai Driving Licenses:

The law provides for certain conditions, to be satisfied by a person who wishes to apply for a driving license in Dubai, which are as listed below:

The number of lessons required is determined by the previous experience the person has with respect to driving. Also an additional number of lessons are to taken if the performance during the test is not satisfactory. Where the applicant is a holder of a valid driving license issued by a foreign country that is excluded by a decision of the Minister of Interior, then pursuant to the conditions determined by such decision, the applicant may be granted the license without the need to pass the required driving test.

On satisfaction of all the above conditions the Licensing authority shall issue a license which is a granted for a period of 10 years out of which the first 6 months is a probation period during which if a lot of road rules are broken then the person’s license is repudiated for a year after which he/she needs to reapply for the same. In case the applicant is between 17 and 21 years of age the license granted is valid only for a year and is to be renewed every year.

The Licensing authority may ask for a physical fitness examination before renewing the license and may refuse renewal if they find that the person is not fit to drive on the road due to some physical disorder.
A penalty of a maximum imprisonment term of a period of 3 months or/and a fine of a minimum amount of Five Thousand Dirhams (AED 5000) for a person who is driving without a valid driving license or for driving a vehicle not approved by the license held by such a person.

For legal advice regarding the subject, please call +971 4 4221944, or call 800-LAWYER (529937).

Dubai being an Islamic State does not support the consumption of liquor but as the economy of this State is heavily dependent on tourism, it cannot apply a complete ban on the sale, purchase or consumption of alcohol. Dubai unlike Sharjah is not a dry State but it has regulated the consumption and the transactions that take place for alcohol. Out of the few taxes that are imposed by this Emirate, one is imposed on Alcohol. Since the year of 1965, Dubai levies 30% tax on alcohol.

Import, export, manufacture, purchase, consumption or sale of liquor to third parties is all regulated by the Liquor Control Law of 1972 (hereinafter known as ‘the law’). This law requires a license to be obtained before indulging in any of the activities mentioned hereinabove in regards to liquor. The law provides for a license to be obtained from the Emirates Police Headquarters which is designated to be the licensing authority for liquor.

The Licensing Authority may on the basis of an application grant a person a one year renewable license permitting him to:

The law provides for the following fees in respect to application and grant of liquor licenses:

To apply for a license to purchase liquor the following criteria have to be fulfilled:

For application for the license to purchase liquor the following documents need to be submitted to the licensing authority:

The licensing authority while granting the license shall take into consideration the age, income, family status, etc. and in accordance to it provide for a consumption limit on the license. Alcohol purchased is to be limited in accordance to the limit mentioned in the license. Also, a fee which is equal to 20% of the purchase limit is to be deposited with the licensing authority in the form of an administrative charge.

The Licensing Authority may on the basis of an application grant a person an export license for liquor in the Emirate subject to a specific quota restraint for fee mentioned hereinabove.

The licensing authority has the power to impose any conditions or restraints on the license so granted and may also revoke the license if it thinks fit.

No person is allowed to purchase liquor without a license for the same. But as Dubai is a tourist place, it has provided for certain places such hotels, restaurants and bars where alcohol may be purchased and consumed without the possession of a license for the same. But that does not give any person a right to purchase alcohol and consume it in public places or getting drunk and moving around in public places and such activities are strictly prohibited. Drunk driving is not tolerated at all in Dubai and is met with strict measures. The liquor purchase license only entails the following two rights:

Even advertising alcohol in public places or through the means of media is prohibited.

Any breach of the provisions of the law is punishable with an imprisonment term of not more than 6 months or a fine of not more than 5,000 Riyals or both. The Court may in such circumstances also order the confiscation of the liquor and any tools and devices used to commit the crime.

For legal advice regarding the subject, please call +971 4 4221944, or call 800-LAWYER (529937).

Walking on UAE roads? Beware! Road accidents in the UAE have been on the rise and government has not been able to reduce the number even after all the sanctions and fines that have been attached to rash and negligent driving. News reports reveal the increasing number of road accidents where it has been highlighted that the first quarter of 2013 has seen a glaring rise to 48 road accidents compared to the 27 road accidents that took place in the corresponding period of last year. Not only have the number of accidents increased, even the number of accidents causing serious injuries and deaths has increased this year in comparison to last year.

With the rise in the accidents, the number of Hit and Run cases are also on a rise. Daily the newspapers give us a new story about such cases. one published a case concerns a person who was arrested after he submitted himself to the police for committing a Hit and Run a week earlier in which a 5 year old girl lost her life while playing outside her house. Hit and Run are cases where a person after committing the road accident by hitting someone with his vehicle flees from the scene in order to escape liability for his actions. Hit and Run is considered to be a serious crime as not only does the person committing such crime try to escape his liability but also he leaves the person injured there unattended which may at times aggravate the injury or even lead to the death of the person and therefore the Law has provided for sanctions against such acts.

The Federal Law No. 21 of 1995 (hereinafter referred to as ‘the law’) concerns the regulation of traffic in the United Arab Emirates. The law provides for various rules and regulations that one need to follow while driving a vehicle. Some of the rules that are essential to avoid injuring pedestrians are as follows:

The law also provides rules that a person must follow while driving for his own safety and the safety of other people on the road. But the following regulations that are to be abided by in case of an accident where an injury is sustained to either a human or an animal.

In case the person involved in the accident doesn’t abide by the above rules, it shall be considered to be a Hit and Run case. The Police officers in such cases have the power to arrest such persons. The law empowers the police to arrest a person in the following cases:

Apart from the arrest, sanctions are also provided for the above enlisted offences. The sanction provided for Hit and Run cases is that of a term of imprisonment according to the discretion of the court and a minimum amount of twenty five thousand dirhams (AED 25,000) as fine.

A similar penalty is also sanctioned in cases where the vehicle driver is driving or attempting to drive the vehicle on the road while under the effect of alcoholic drinks, drugs or any other anesthetic substances.

Further a penalty of imprisonment for a period not in excess of three months and to a fine of a minimum amount of five hundred Dirhams (AED 500) or either of the two is sanctioned in case the vehicle driver fails to provide necessary documents and information required by the attending police officer on the commission of any offence such as Hit and Run or Drunk Driving by the said person.

Apart from the above mentioned penalties prescribed by the law, the court is also empowered by the law to take the following measures against the offender in case any of the above discussed offences are proved against him:

Whoever is so deprived from the right to obtain a driving license may submit before the same court that condemned him an application for abrogating such deprivation after the lapse of six months from the date of the condemnation. Any license obtained during the period of deprivation is considered to be null and void and the person driving on the basis of such license will be deemed to be driving without a license and shall be sentenced to imprisonment and with a fine of a minimum amount of five thousand dirhams (AED 5000).

For legal advice regarding the subject, please call +971 4 4221944, or call 800-LAWYER (529937).