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UAE debt collectors may face jail for threats


DUBAI – While debt defaulters in the UAE face legal consequences for non-payment of their dues, debt collectors who harass them may also face punishment under the law, according to a legal expert.

Banks in the UAE may hire a private debt collection agency to deal with customers who have defaulted on their personal loan or credit card payments.

However, it is illegal for debt collectors to threaten or harass defaulting customers in the process, said Ashish Mehta, managing partner of Asish Mehta & Associates.

Under the UAE law, threatening someone is considered a criminal offence.

“Whoever threatens another by words, acts or signs, in writing or verbally or through another person and in instances other than those stated in the two preceding articles, shall be sentenced to detention for a term not exceeding one year or to a fine not in excess of ten thousand dirhams,” the law states.

Mehta said that customers who are threatened and harassed by debt collectors may file a police complaint against the private debt collection agency.

The legal expert advises debt defaulters to make a written request to their bank in order to reach an amicable settlement on payment terms and to get an assurance from the bank that it will issue a No Due Certificate once the outstanding amount has been paid. ICA/Expat Media

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