Monday, January 11, 2010

Ajman to establish new property dispute panel by Q1 2010

Ajman will shortly announce a new committee to settle disputes between developers and investors. The committee will take up issues pertaining to cheques involved in real estate transactions.

The Director General of Ajman Real Estate Regulatory Authority (ARRA), Omar Al Barguthi, said the committee was hoped to begin operations by end of 2009. But the clearance from the Ministry of Justice is awaited.

Apart from resolving investor-developer disputes, the committee will also take up issues pertaining to post-dated cheque issues and more such cases pertaining to property sector, he added.

The committee will include five members nominated by the Executive Council, headed by a Judge assigned by the Ministry of Justice. In November, the Dubai Government established a new judicial committee to deal with cases of bounced cheque in property sector.

ARRA is working with Ruler's Court of Ajman based on a decree to establish a 'bounced cheque committee'. The decree is hoped to be passed within next two months, said Lisa Dale, Partner and Head of Property Department, Al Tamimi & Company.

This follows the initiative by Dubai, wherein a similar committee was established on the directions of Dubai's Ruler.

Ajman has several cases of off-plan property purchasers, wherein developers were given post-dated cheques. When the purchasers bought property off-plan and gave post-dated cheques, the purchasers have failed to honour these cheques, either because the developer has not progressed with construction, or due to financial constraints faced by the purchasers. The developer then files a complaint and in several instances, the purchasers have either left the country or are facing criminal prosecution, Lisa explained.

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