DIFC freehold ownership laws enacted

The Real Property (DIFC Law No 4 of 2007) and Strata Title (DIFC Law No 5 of 2007), as well as regulations complementing these laws, have been enacted on 21 June 2007 by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. The laws and regulations will take effect immediately. These laws apply exclusively in the jurisdiction of the DIFC and provide an internationally-proven system for registration and real property ownership in line with the DIFC"s mission vision and values as an international financial centre.

The Real Property Law guarantees ownership of freehold land and buildings, and other interest in land, within the DIFC. The law is based on the underlying principles of English common law, but also incorporates the Torrens system of land registration, well known in countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Singapore.

Under the Real Property Law, land transactions are registered in a central register administered in the DIFC. Once registered, the law certifies them to be fully effective.