Practice Areas

THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE LEGAL SERVICES FIRM, FOR THE MOST FAVORABLE OUTCOMES

Commercial Law is one of our most prominent service offering. We act as professional advisers to our clients, developing close working relationships with them and guiding them on their businesses and strategic objectives.

With UAE emerging as an important geography on the global stage, we assist multi-nationals with the setting up of operations and doing business in the Middle East and African region. Our extensive network of counterparts in other global centers helps in establishing a smooth, seamless relationships with our clients’ other global offices.

Our team of corporate lawyers undertakes transactional, contractual and advisory work, including:

  • Incorporation of companies 
  • Corporate restructuring
  • Capital restructuring
  • Private equity infusions
  • Cross border transactions
  • Corporate governance advice and compliance
  • Asset, share and business acquisitions/divestment transactions
  • Local and regional joint ventures
  • Legal due diligence
  • Investment agreements
  • Entertainment, sports/leisure agreements
  • Labour & employment issues
  • Agency and distribution agreements
  • Licensing and franchise agreements

Goodwins has solid experience in advising banks, finance companies and other financial institutions in a range of services including dispute resolution, structuring/restructuring of banking facilities, bankruptcy proceedings, regulatory initiatives and much more.

We go beyond standard credit settlements and financial agreement altercations, to offer innovative and workable solutions for dispute resolution.

Our Banking and Financial expertise primarily lies in:

Regulatory and Compliance

We advise banks and financial institutions on regulatory requirements of the UAE, whether it is relating to the provision of financial services, or the distribution of financial products. Our team has extensive experience in the financial services industry on legal, compliance, operational and management issues.

New Products

Our clients widely seek our expertise in developing new innovative and creative financial products. Our deep knowledge of regulatory matters helps us advise clients on creating new product lines, and designing marketing content that is compliant. Our experience helps us draft content that is consumer-friendly, simple, engaging and above all, compliant.

Dealing with employment laws requires sensitivity and an unbiased attitude. With in-depth knowledge of the prevailing employment laws in Abu Dhabi, we offer consultancy as well litigation services to effectively resolve employment disputes. Our team holds expertise in handling issues related to employment termination, benefit schemes, insurance and injury claims, violation of employment contracts and much more.

Our team engages with a range of clients including MNCs, government and semi-government bodies, and regional and international institutions. We consult with them on all aspects of Labor, Employment & Immigration Laws. Typically, we help draft employment contracts, ensure compliance with the local laws & regulations in force, resolve disputes through mediation, engage in conciliation or litigation, and provide legal opinions or consultations. We also help our clients calculate end of service benefits, draft their personnel policies & procedures, draft show cause notices and notice of termination, and much more.

Goodwins’ Insurance Practice represents a range of clients and services including property, casualty, life and health insurers, intermediaries, loss adjusters, trade associations and even emergency assistance and evacuation service providers. Our team is well-known for its expertise and is also widely sought by overseas lawyers and corporations for assistance in all aspects of local insurance laws and practices.

Market Conduct & Regulatory Compliance

We advise clients on market conduct & regulatory compliance requirements relating to the provision of insurance services and the distribution of insurance products. Our expertise includes counselling on legal and compliance aspects of operational matters, as well as structuring and marketing of insurance products.

New Products and Programs

Our deep and wide understanding of regulation and compliance helps us assist our clients in developing new insurance products and programs. This helps them create new product lines, and design products and marketing content that are compliant. Our experience also helps us draft practical, industry and consumer accepted documents. We work with our clients to develop more consumer friendly plain-English/Arabic contracts and other material.

Product Enhancement and Modification

We also assist clients in the drafting and reviewing insurance products, including the contract provisions for their various products. Further, we help draft and review the related product summaries and the marketing materials to ensure that they are compliant with existing legislation, guidelines and notices from the regulatory authorities.

Our attorneys advise some of the most innovative entrepreneurs with regard to new technologies such as e-commerce, software licensing, website development and hosting, privacy law, IT security, technology transfers, IT outsourcing, Cloud Computing, IT Contracts, social networking and online gaming. In keeping with the e-commerce trend and increasing use of the cyber space to share and distribute information, our able team keeps itself up-to-date with the latest practices in Information Technology Law.

With a keen focus on data exchange and protection, e-governance, e-business, e-licensing, software, cyber and computer laws, Goodwins is capable of providing litigation services on all disputes or violations related to technology transfers.

Our team is thus fully capable of advising on matters relating to technology-based projects including non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements, distribution rights as well as provisions against international exploitation.

We offer a full suite of legal services to the IT industry. Our team has a deep understanding of the various legal and regulatory issues in an area that is constantly changing. In fact, a number of governments have engaged our teams to advise on and draft IT-related legislation, including legislation on e-commerce and cybercrime. With a keen focus on data exchange and protection, e-governance, e-business, e-licensing, software, cyber and computer laws, we are fully capable of providing litigation services on all disputes or violations related to technology transfers.

Our area of expertise extends to a host of new technologies such as e-commerce, software licensing, website development and hosting, privacy law, IT security, technology transfers, IT outsourcing, Cloud Computing, IT Contracts, social networking and online gaming.

We advise our clients on:

  • Systems integration, teaming and subcontract agreements, back to back agreements
  • VAR agreements, software development agreements, interchange agreements
  • Outsourcing agreements, facilities management agreements;
  • Agreements for supply of hardware, software support and maintenance agreements
  • Software development agreements, software licensing and sublicensing agreements
  • Technology license agreements, cross-licenses, transfer of technology agreements
  • Electronic commerce, website and webhosting agreements
  • Advising and Drafting of IT-related legislation
  • Advising on legal aspects of IT security and governance
  • Advising on adoption of legal strategies for document management, data processing, data mining, evidence
  • Advising on IT and Internet use policies

The Goodwins team is well-equipped to handle all property related lawsuits, irrespective of their degree of complexity. With a deep understanding Middle East Law and culture, we have successfully assisted a range of clients ranging from property developers, investors, construction and engineering companies as well as international corporations.

Our team offers litigation and consultation services across legislative and regulatory issues, acquisition related matters, development and management of properties, landlord and tenant issues, estate management contracts, as well as dispute resolution.

Our expertise includes advising construction companies, contractors and subcontractors on all aspects of Projects & Infrastructure including:

  • Road Sector including Highways
  • Ports
  • Water
  • Utilities sector
  • Airports
  • Construction and Real Estate Development.

Covering various aspects of the sale, mortgage and lease of properties, we offer litigation/consultation services in case of legislative and regulatory issues, acquisition related matters, development and management of properties, landlord and tenant issues, estate management contracts, as well as property dispute resolution.

Our team handles property related lawsuits, irrespective of their degree of complexity. With the deep understanding of the cultural implications and laws applicable in the Middle East, our team of attorneys has successfully handled a range of clients inclusive of property developers, investors, construction and engineering companies as well as international corporations.

Shari’ah, or more properly Al-Shari’ah, literally means the pathway, path to be followed, or clear way to be followed, and has come to mean the path upon which the believer has to tread. In original usage Shari’ah meant the road to the watering place or path leading to the water, the way to the source of life.

In the modern context, these principles, founded on the words of Allah [The God] as revealed in the Qur’an, and traditions gathered from the life of the Prophet Muhammad [PBUH], inform many aspects of commerce, business and life itself.

The Goodwins team has an in-depth knowledge of every aspect of Islamic Shari’ah, directly from its original sources. We bank upon this knowledge to advise our clients on all matters relating to Islamic Shari’ah including:

  • Shari’ah-compliant wills
  • Property purchases
  • Mortgages and financing
  • Marriage and family
  • Divorce
  • Custody and guardianship
  • Matters relating to inheritance
  • Estate planning

Our team has deep expertise in all matters related to maritime as well and aviation law. We work with a wide spectrum of clients including ship owners, fleet owners, charterers, protection and indemnity (P&I) clubs, managers, operators, underwriters, freight forwarders, insurers, ship builders, repairers as well as banks and carrier companies, advising them on matters related to Maritime aspects of Dry Financing/Wet Financing, Insurance, Bunkering, Ship Arrest, Voyage and Time Charters, Demurrages, INCO terms.

We collaborates with the client and their team to handle a range of maritime issues that include, but are not limited to cargo claims, bills of lading, forward freight agreements, contracts of afffreightment, shipping risk insurance and claims, ship building contracts, maritime collisions and casualties, ship financing, maritime liens, maritime personal injury, repair contract negotiations and environmental pollution claims.

The growth in the aerospace market has led us to extend our services to this space as well. We provide litigation and consultation services on issues such as authorization and licensing, aircraft asset leasing and financing, aircraft mortgage, wet leasing, dry leasing, aviation passenger and cargo claims under Montreal Convention, cargo contracts and policies, risk involved product liability, professional liability, corporate liability, credit management, and property or personal injury.

Commercial agencies, distributorship and franchisees are quickly becoming the catalyst for the growth of global brands and businesses. Goodwins advises their clients on all aspects of agency laws, including commercial agencies, franchises, distributorship, representation, sponsorship etc.

Our team assists our clients in negotiating the best win-win deals with their principals, and helps them prepare appropriate agreements to be signed and registered with the competent local authorities, ensuring compliance with the applicable laws and regulations. We also advise our clients on commercial agreements concerning logistics and warehousing, facilities management, joint ventures, partnerships and strategic alliances through joint ventures and mergers.

part from providing advice/consultation on various aspects of agency laws, regarding creation, documentation and registration, Goodwins is also equipped to also handle all types of litigation relating to enforcement, termination and deregistration of agencies.

Goodwins has considerable expertise and extensive experience in dealing with the projects involving oil and gas, petrochemicals, power, water and utilities, ports, airports and civil infrastructure. We have advised projects in the Middle East and African region mostly in Energy, Construction, Hydroelectric power projects, Marine and other vital sectors.

Our attorneys regularly act as lead counsel for our clients, providing tailor made solutions to them.

We deal with energy-based projects including;

  • Oil and gas
  • Power and utilities
  • Renewables
  • Natural resources

Goodwins has a lot of experience dealing with International Trade Negotiations. Our team routinely acts as an advisor to numerous MNC’s, business and trade related associations, both in the private sector as well as in the government/semi-government sector.

We work with, and advise our clients in the areas of:

  • Anti-dumping laws
  • Queries related to WTO, and GATT
  • Export control regulations
  • International sale of goods contracts carried by sea
  • Export control regulations
  • Foreign investment regulations
  • Sale and purchase of merchandise
  • International franchising contracts
  • Foreign investment regulations
  • Inward and outward investments
  • Import compliance programs

Our lawyers act for and advise private banks, high net worth individuals, lending financial institutions and both onshore and offshore trusts. The flexible nature of a trust makes it a very useful tool in tax planning, asset preservation, buy-sell agreements for complex partnerships and multiple shareholdings in a company, and in the setting up of charities.

Our team has assisted clients in applying to the regulator for trust company licenses as well as advised on the compliance issues facing a licensed trust company. Goodwins provides customized services and solutions for our clients whilst effectively using trusts in various scenarios.

Apart from being the regions premier legal services firm, Goodwins is also a full-service management consulting, thanks to its Specialist Advisory Services.

Our team draws on a wide network of competent professional networks with an extensive knowledge base in consulting, to offer our clients wide-ranging services including market and financial feasibility studies, customised market research and surveys, corporate finance, business restructuring and development strategy, project management and implementation, and specialised advisory related to mergers, acquisitions and corporate restructuring.

The Goodwins team routinely advises clients in the planning of estates and the use of trusts, where applicable. We counsel high net-worth individuals on tax planning, asset preservation, provision for minors and disabled dependents. A lot of this consultation involves working closely with Financial Advisers and other professionals that the client might have retained.

Our team also assists clients in matters of probate and administration of wills, including making submissions and representations to the Estate Duty Department.

Our firm has always advocated every responsible individual drawing up their own will. We’ve taken it upon ourselves to educate lay people on the importance of estate planning and, to that end, we’ve conducted numerous training seminars on wills and trusts, and have produced in Plain English, “A Guide to writing a Will”.