Commercial Transactions Law and Check Decriminalization: Checks are a large part of the UAE society, as they are a tool that plays a great importance in the world of commerce, as many and investors rely on them completely. These papers are based on many that have a significant impact on the economic market, which requires the existence of laws that are based on them to ensure the validity of these physical transfers. Among the legal updates that have occurred recently, is the amendment of the Commercial Transactions Law to control the handling of the check as it is an important means not only in financial transactions, but in influencing the economy as a whole.

Decriminalizing the Check and Commercial Transactions Law These amendments include several important points, including:

1- Decriminalizing the check without balance, and amending and creating 16 articles, including 7 amended articles and 9 new articles. They are already in effect January 2, 2022. The amendments also included specific cases where criminalization was limited. Based on this amendment, checks have power and do not wait for the court’s ruling, as it is no longer required to file a report with the police or the prosecution. In accordance with the procedures and rules in the Executive Regulations of the Civil Procedures Law, the check bearer resorts to the judge directly in case the check is bounced due to insufficient balance in whole or in part.

2- One of the most important and recent amendments mentioned in Articles 600 and 617 is the possibility of partial payment when the law obliges the bank to pay partial payment. The second paragraph of Article 617 of the Commercial Transactions Law states that in the event that the amount in the check is less than the amount of the check, the bank must partially fulfill the available amount unless the check holder objects. Whereas, anyone who refrains from partial fulfillment and does not issue a certificate or deliver the check will be liable to a fine of no less than 10% of the value of the check and a minimum of 5,000 dirhams, in accordance with Article 641 of the same law. Where the bank is obliged to deliver the partial fulfillment certificate and keep a copy of it. The bank sends a notification of the account holder’s data to the Central Bank.

Although the check was decriminalized and returned without balance, the law identified 4 cases of criminalization, which are:

1- Cases of fraud and fraud in issuing checks.

2- Cases of closing the account and withdrawing the balance before issuing the check.

3- Writing the check in a way that prevents its cashing.

4- Cases of check fraud.

Approval of the check and its provisions are referred to in Article 600, whereby the withdrawing bank has the right to indicate that the check is credited. Credit is achieved by the bank’s signature on the check, and the payment for payment must be available in the bank, and the consideration for fulfillment or the remainder of it is frozen at the bank’s responsibility until the date of issuance of the check for fulfillment. It follows from this that the bank, after confirming the existence of the consideration for payment on the date of the annotation, is not allowed not to spend and argue that there is not enough money to pay the check.

The new amendments to the Commercial Transactions Law to control check handling included some penalties and decriminalization of the check:

Whereas Article 641 of the law mentioned the penalties and acts for which the penalty is imposed. Where he shall be penalized by a fine of no less than 10% of the value of the check and a minimum of up to 5000 dirhams and not more than twice the value of the check, whoever refrains from partial fulfillment of the check or refuses to issue its certificate or deliver it or adhere to the statement contained in Article 632 or refuses to honor the check intentionally and maliciously Intent, abstaining from the truth of existence versus fulfilling and lying about the truth.

Article 641 bis1 included a fine of no less than 10% of the value of the check and a minimum of 1000 dirhams, and not more than the value of the check. Anyone who hands a check to its bearer knowing that it has no consideration for the payment of its value. While bis 3 of the same article stipulates that a fine of not less than 20 thousand dirhams and not more than 100,000 dirhams,

and one year’s imprisonment for anyone who commits one of these acts:

1- Using forged checks knowingly.

2- Entitlement to amounts from forged checks with his knowledge.

3- Using checks written in the name of others, or benefiting from them without right, or using them in crimes.

4- Forging checks or attributing them to others and changing the data in any way from the provisions of Article 216 of the Federal Law with the aim of causing harm.

The law also punishes with the same penalty whoever imports, manufactures or provides equipment, devices or information that cause the forgery crimes mentioned in the article.

The new law included some administrative penalties, which included several important points, according to Article 643 of the law that the court has the right to withdraw the checkbook from the convict, and prevent him from giving him any new checkbooks for a period not exceeding 5 years, in addition to a fine of no less than 50 thousand dirhams. And not more than 100 thousand dirhams. The penalty shall be applied if the check book is not delivered within 15 days from the date of the notification. The court also requires the suspension of the commercial and professional activity of the convict for a period of 3 years if he is convicted of one of the crimes mentioned in Article 641. A fine of no less than 100,000 dirhams, and no less than 200,000 dirhams, is imposed on banks if the rule for withdrawing the check book is violated. In the event that the liability of the natural person is not established, the penalty shall be directed to the legal person by suspending the activity for a period of 6 months, and a fine not exceeding 5 times the fine approved by law, and not less than twice the fine. Article 644 stipulates that the person responsible for managing the legal person shall not be punished unless it is proven that he knew or committed the crime