UAE Court Rejects Lawyer 51,000 Dirham Compensation Claim

In a recent decision, the Abu Dhabi Family, Civil, and Administrative Claims Court dismissed a lawyer's claim against a former client.

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The attorney requested payment, claiming that the client had maliciously filed a complaint against her.

Disputed Claims for Compensation

In intricate legal details, the lawyer initiated a lawsuit, demanding an amount of 51 thousand dirhams from the client. The claim included compensation for material and moral damages, along with the obligation for the client to cover legal fees and expenses. The lawyer contended that the client, after entering into three agreements for legal representation, failed to honour the agreed-upon fees. The dispute escalated when the client filed a complaint with the Lawyers’ Affairs Committee, accusing the lawyer of professional misconduct.

Committee Decision and Counterclaim

Responding to the client's complaint, the Lawyers’ Affairs Committee ruled in favour of the lawyer, determining that the complaint was baseless. This, in turn, prompted the lawyer to counterclaim, asserting that the client's complaint had caused her material and moral damage. In response, the defendant submitted a memorandum seeking the dismissal of the case.

The Court's'sationale in Dismissing a Lawsuit

The court, in its ruling, elucidated the principles governing the right to resort to the judiciary. It emphasised that seeking legal redress is a legitimate public right, entailing accountability for compensation only if it is proven that the exercise of this right was malicious and aimed at causing harm to the opponent without seeking any legitimate benefit. The court underscored that the evidence presented lacked indications of arbitrary filing of the complaint or malicious intent on the part of the defendant. The crucial elements of responsibility, such as error, damage, and a causal relationship, were not established.

Rejected Lawsuit and Costs Imposed

In light of the aforementioned considerations, the court ruled to reject the lawsuit, emphasising the absence of evidence supporting the claim of malicious intent. Additionally, the court imposed fees and expenses on the plaintiff, underscoring the need for a valid basis when seeking legal recourse.

Moreover, the Abu Dhabi court's decision highlights the importance of establishing a legitimate basis when filing legal claims and the consequent responsibility for compensation only when malicious intent is proven.

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