DUBAI 2 March 2018: Parents and property owners in Dubai are being urged to stop postponing key decisions covering the protection of valuable assets and young children.
Experts believe that foreigners moving to Dubai adopt a “new normal” and behave differently than they would at home, either because they are too focused on acquiring goods and property, or are simply having such a good time.
New statistics from the DIFC Wills Service Centre show that only one in five people drawing up a will in Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah in 2017 were below the age of 40. Yet by that age most parents are already bringing up children and many have also bought homes and established businesses.
Do Not Delay
Sean Hird, Director of the DIFC Wills Service, said: “People tend to draw up their wills in their 40s or 50s, but in Dubai many people succeed young and rapidly acquire valuable assets. As soon as they own property or a business, or start having children, they should quickly plan legal protection – and not delay or procrastinate.”
“The UAE is a welcoming and tolerant country, but residents should never forget that the rules here are different from their home countries and they should prepare accordingly.”
The new figures show that most people draw up their wills in mid-life – over 31 per cent in their 40s, and more than 25 per cent in their fifties. Only just over 21 per cent had a will in place by the age of 40.
The figures also suggest that many people simply ignore the need for adequate protection. The DIFC Wills Service has drawn up more than 3,000 wills for non-Muslim residents, but that suggests that many thousands more have nothing in place to ensure legal certainty in distributing their assets.
This relaxed approach to financial planning also affects insurance. Leading insurers FPI International surveyed 565 Dubai residents and discovered that only a third had international life insurance policies guaranteed to pay out once they have moved on and left the UAE.
Philip Cernick, FPI’s Chief Marketing Officer, Middle East and Africa, said: “Foreign nationals who move to Dubai have a lot to enjoy, with all the sunshine and shopping, but living the Dubai Dream can become the new normal.”
“We see that large numbers of people take too long to get round to properly protecting their families and their assets – if they do make plans at all. Those of us lucky enough to live here should put that right now – by systematically preparing a will and putting in place portable life insurance.”
DIFC Wills Services offers non-Muslim Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah residents five different wills protecting property and businesses, and covering the guardianship of children.