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    • Criminal Complaint filed against Al Fajer Properties Sheikh Maktoum
      Criminal Complaint filed in Germany against Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Juma Al Maktoum CEO of Dubai Developer Al Fajer Properties The Dubai Sheikh who mislead and extort a German Couple  Germany – Dubai 2011 A German elderly couple , today 80 + 50 years old who have been Dubai Tourists since a decade, bought in 2005 an apartment at Nakheel´s Dubai Residen […]
    • UAE: Human Rights Blogger, Sorbonne Lecturer Charged With ‘Humiliating' Officials
      source Human Rights Watch www.hrw.org (Beirut) - The United Arab Emirates attorney general should immediately drop all charges against five pro-democracy activists to halt their trial, Human Rights Watch said today. The charges of "humiliating" top officials relate solely to the defendants' peaceful use of speech to criticize the UAE governmen […]
    • Nakheel Dubai Sunland Case
      June 5, 2011After 21 hearings, Chris O'Donnell, the Australian chief executive of Dubai's major developer, Nakheel, came to the defence of his former colleagues Matthew Joyce and Marcus Lee. Mr Joyce and Mr Lee are accused of profiting from the sale of land that had been earmarked for a colossal high-rise development, which was to include the futur […]
    • Dubai Nakheel CEO decided to leave the company
      Dubai June 7, 2011 Nakheel said on Wednesday that its CEO Chris O'Donnell had left the company "after completing his contract terms". O'Donnell, an Australian who joined the developer in 2006, said he had decided to leave Nakheel following five years spent with the company, the statement added. O'Donnell has overseen a traumatic time […]
    • Owner of Dubai Developer Damac Hussain Sajwani files case against Egypt corruption ruling
      Dubai property developer Damac said on Tuesday it had filed an international arbitration case against Egypt over a land dispute and the conviction of its chairman and owner, Hussain Sajwani.A Cairo court last week sentenced Sajwani in his absence to jail and ordered him to pay a $40.5 million fine in connection with his 2006 purchase of land at Egypt's […]
    • Dubai Palm Jumeriah - Investors plan to take legal action
      Investors in Dubai Palm Jumeirah’s Golden Mile complex will this week serve the developer behind the project with a legal ultimatum to hand over their units or issue them with a refund.Up to ten investors in the luxury complex plan to issue Souq Residences with legal notice in a bid to force a resolution to a dispute that has been ongoing for more than a yea […]
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Archive for the ‘Dubai Property dispute’ Category

Dubai Investors of a Jumeirah Village Circle project demand the return of their money

Posted by 7starsdubai on March 18, 2012

  DUBAI // Investors who bought apartments in a project at Jumeirah Village  Circle that was never completed say they are prepared to take the developer Ishraqah to court if they do not get their money back.

“I poured my life savings into buying a one-bedroom apartment in the project,” said Swarup Anand, a father of one who invested Dh500,000 in the Seasons development’s Spring cluster.

After the financial crisis only the Summer and Autumn clusters were ever completed, leaving people who bought in the Spring cluster without a property. No homes were sold in the Winter cluster.

“We chose this project because we wanted to go with an established and reputable company,” said Mr Anand, who paid for an apartment in the Spring cluster.

“But from 2009 they kept delaying and delaying. They kept warning us that if we did not keep up with the instalments then we would be charged late fees.”

A spokeswoman for Ishraqah said: “The Spring cluster was indeed cancelled last year. Work on the Winter cluster had never started. The matter is now with the land department.”

continue reading original source The National

Posted in Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Dubai Property legal, Dubai Real Estate Scandal | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai Investors of a Jumeirah Village Circle project demand the return of their money

Dubai Property Investors from UK take action against Damac in London

Posted by 7starsdubai on July 27, 2011

Around 20 buyers of units in Damac’s stalled Palm Springs development plan to lobby outside the Qatar-owned store, where the developer has run a month-long promotion for its Versace-branded real estate project in Saudi Arabia.

The group will carry placards and plans to hand out leaflets to shoppers headlined ‘I would not buy from Damac again’, in a bid to embarrass the developer they claim has held their deposits for eight years.

“It is really trying to make our voices heard with Damac people who will be there, as much as we can and to hand out leaflets to anyone who is interested in hearing our story,” Craig Murray, a spokesperson for 100-strong Palm Springs Investors Group told Arabian Business.

source Arabian  Business…….continue readling

Posted in Damac, Damac Pal Springs Jebel Ali Dubai, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Dubai Real Estate Scandal | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai Property Investors from UK take action against Damac in London

Dubai Real Estate Dispute Lender has the right to hold debtor ´s passport

Posted by 7starsdubai on June 23, 2011

Dubai Court of Cassation issued the legal principle in the case of a foreigner who works as a Director at a real estate brokerage firm, which prevented him from travelling, after he allegedly embezzled Dh14 million.

The investor had filed a lawsuit before the Dubai Court of First Instance, requesting it to allow him to hold the director’s passport.

The investor claimed that he had handed over two cheques worth Dh14m to the company manager in return for booking a real estate unit in a tower. But he was surprised to learn that the real estate brokerage company sold that unit to another investor.

After several rounds of discussions, it was agreed between the parties that the manager of the company (the defendant) pledged to refund the amount. However, he did not comply with the deal, the investor told the court.

Meanwhile, the investor moved the court to grant him the right to with hold the passport of the defendant so that he did not leave the UAE.

source EMIRATES BUSINESS 247 …….continue reading

Posted in Dubai court, Dubai Debts, Dubai Fraud, Dubai Legal - Real Estate Lawsuits, Dubai Property dispute | Tagged: | Comments Off on Dubai Real Estate Dispute Lender has the right to hold debtor ´s passport

Palm Jumeriah feud legal action

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 15, 2011

Investors in Dubai Palm Jumeirah’s Golden Mile complex will this week serve
the developer behind the project with a legal ultimatum to hand over
their units or issue them with a refund.

Up to ten investors in the luxury complex plan to issue Souq
Residences with legal notice in a bid to force a resolution to a dispute
that has been ongoing for more than a year.

 “Most of us purchased these properties back in 2004, we paid for them
in full back in August 2009,” investor Martin Lawrence told Arabian

source Arabian Business continue reading…..

Posted in Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Dubai Real Estate Scandal, Palm Jumeirah Dubai, Property Investor Dubai | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Palm Jumeriah feud legal action

Dubai Contractual Law – Legal Opinions

Posted by 7starsdubai on April 20, 2011

Having a Problem with your Contractual Partner (Developer in Dubai) ?

Here is an Extract of the  UAE Dubai Contractual Law

Article 243 in particular:

(1) The contract shall apply to the subject matter of the contract and the consideration…shall not de is pend upon receipt or any other unless the law provides otherwise.

(2) With regards to the rights (obligations) arising out of the contract, each of the contracting parties must perform that which he is obligided to do under the contract.

The developer is not entiteled to make the providion of the subject – matter, i.e. the delivery of the Unit dependent upon the receipt of the plot from the master developer and therefore, cannot indedinitely bind the Client to wait for the Developer to receive the plot.
Furthermore, No agreement can run indefinitely and has to be discharged at one time.

Article 244 of the Civil Code in particular……

A Developer is also in Clear breach of Article 244 of the Civil Code in the case of commutative contracts ( One in which each of the contracting parties give and receives an equivalent). If the contract of sale is of this kind, the seller gives the thing sold, and receives the price, which is the equivalent) for specific property, provided the conditions for the validity thereof are satisfied, each of the contracting parties must have an established right to dispose of the property and each shall have an obligation to deliver the subject matter of the contract to , the Developer is nethe other.

Article 246 of the Civil Code in particular…..

(1) The contract must be performed in accordance with its contents, and in a manner consstent whith the requirements of good faith.

(2) the contract shall not be restricted to an obligation upon the contracting party to do that which is ( expressly) contained in it, but shall also embrace that which is appartenant to it by vitue of the law, custom, and the nature of transaction.

Therefore, the Developer not only had the obligation to construct or deliver the Prooperty but als had an implied contractual obligation to do that is necessary to be done in order to complete the performance of the express obligation.
It is the Developer`s implied obligation to ensure that the pre-conditions neceddary for the commencement of construction are met and therefore it is the Developer who is liable if such does not occur.
Even thought the causes are outside the control of the Developer nevertheless legally accountable to the Investor fir such failures.

TERMINATION of Agreements under Law

Article 267 of the Civil Code provides, ” if the contract is valid and binding, it shall not be permissible for either contracting parties to resile from it, nor vary or recind it, save by mutual consent or an order of the court, or under a provision of the law.

Termination of a sale and purchase agreement under the law depends upon several factors and circumstances and may only granted in extreme cases where the breach cannot be remedied.
The court when considering the question of wether to grant termination or to order compensation along with specific performance considers
a) the magnitude of the breach
b) possibility if the agreement can still be performed

Article 727 of the Civil Code states:

(1) In contracts binding on both parties, if one of the parties does not do what he is obliged to do under the contract, the other party may, after giving notice to obligor, require that the contract may be performed or cancelled.

(2) The judge may order the obligor to perform the contract forthwith or may defer ( performance) to a specific time, and he may also order that the contract be cancelled and compensation paid in any case if apprpriate.

As per Article 273 of the Civil Code

(1) In contracts binding on both parties, if force majeure supervenes whih makes the performance of the contract impossible, the corresponding obligation shall cease, and the contract shall be automaticly cancelled.

(2) In the case of partial impossibility, that part of the contract which is impossible shall be extinguished, and the same shall apply to temporary impossiblity in continuing contracts, and in those two cases it shall be permissible for the obligor to cancel the contract provided that the obligee is so aware.

Article 274 goes on state:

” If the contract is cancelled automaticly or by the act of the parties, the two contracting parties shall be restored to the posotion they were in before the contract was made, and if that is not possible, compensation shall be ordered.”

When performance of an obligation under a binding Agreement becomes impossible, the contract will be terminated thereby extinguishing the corresponding obligation and returning the parties to their pre-contractual positions, which each party being required to return that which he had received und the Agreement.

Upon termination the Client is also entitel to receive twelve percent annual interest pursuant to Article 78 of Federal Law No. 8 of 1993 ( the Commercial Transaction Law)
on all payments made towards the Purchase Price of the Unit.


Posted in Contractual Law Dubai, Dubai Property Court, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Lawsuit Dubai | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai Contractual Law – Legal Opinions

Journalist and Press blamed by Dubai Rera chief

Posted by 7starsdubai on October 15, 2010

source Kippreport – Its all our Fault- by Eva Fermandes

It seems everyone’s favourite scapegoat has yet another cross to bear. A recent statement from a RERA official has blamed irresponsible reporting by the media for the “damage” suffered by Dubai’s real estate industry.

Speaking at a conference, RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Agency) official Marwan bin Ghalita said, “The real estate sector in Dubai has been hurt by the journalists and media publishing incorrect data on the market.

The media is blamed for rising real estate prices… as correct data has never been published… They did not check the accuracy… did not get the correct information which is one of the prime foundations for making any decision. Journalists did not approach official sources to get the right picture.”

Ironically, Ghalita’s comments come amidst reports of four companies suing Nakheel subsidiary The World on account of a breach of contract. Construction of The World, one of Nakheel’s most expensive and ambitious projects that consists of reclaimed islands built to resemble a map of the world, has stalled since the financial crisis. The claims filed against The World by three Sharjah based companies (Global Realty Partners, Gulf Developers and Frontline Developers) amount to a total of $15.3 million (Dh56.19m).

I find it interesting that, in light of court cases like this, some still see fit to blame the media for the mess that is the Dubai property sector. Perhaps the unrealistically ambitious and greedy property developers could take a smidgen of the blame as well?

I remember the days when huge construction projects were being announced on a monthly basis. In fact at the peak of the real estate boom, Emirates 24/7reports Dubai had over 850 registered developers; a figure that has slipped
down to a more sober 500 over the past couple of (humbling) years. In addition to the overabundance of developers, we clearly had too many projects. Emirates 24-7 observes that the Government of Dubai’s bond prospectus, filed at the London Stock Exchange, suggests that a total of 495 registered property projects have now either been cancelled, are
in the process of being cancelled, or have work which has been otherwise stopped.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think the media can claim to be completely innocent (we were too eager to believe in the Dubai dream, and too timid to question the crazy growth), so we aren’t that surprised with RERA’s convictions. But after the judicial, legislative and executive branches, the media has been accused of being the fourth branch of the government (thanks to its softly-softly approach to the Dubai economy and government). If anyone believed that, the ease with which we now shoulder the blame should make them re-think.

The media constantly comes under fire for pretty much everything: the Iraq War, the onset of teenage depression, the status of woman’s body image, to name just a few. The slow speed at which paint dries is probably our fault somewhere along the line as well. Often these accusations are welcome, as they are maliciously motivated and imply we
are (to some degree) fulfilling our role of watchdog. But for RERA, there are surely more productive ways it can invest its time.

Posted in Dubai Debts, Dubai Legal - Real Estate Lawsuits, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Marwan bin Ghalaita, Rera | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Journalist and Press blamed by Dubai Rera chief

Dubai Property Investors frustrated

Posted by 7starsdubai on August 1, 2010

source Emirates Business 247
Dubai, 29 July 2010

Investors in the UAE’s real estate are a frustrated lot, but not just because the sector is in the throes of the worst-ever slowdown it has witnessed. That’s a known fact, and most investors have reconciled to it.
However, what is not known and, therefore, much more frustrating, is the status of the projects in which they have invested their hard-fought cash.

Many developers in the country have apparently chosen to not communicate with their clients about when the stalled projects are going to take off and when will they be delivered, if at all.
Property blogs and social media sites are full of frustrated investors venting their ire.
continue reading….

Posted in 7starsdubai, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Real Estate Scandal Dubai, Rera Dubai, Skyscrapercity | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai Property Investors frustrated

Dubai Property Court Disaster – Four Judges and over 1000 cases

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 24, 2010

source The National
Heavy workland of Justice

The hearing begins and a few words and papers are exchanged between the judge and the lawyers representing each side.

Within minutes, it is all over. Claimants and defendants are quickly ushered out of the courtroom as their respective lawyers whisper a roughly translated version of the judge’s ruling. Moments later, the next case begins.

Welcome to Dubai’s Property Court, a division of the emirate’s legal system that has been dealing with the fallout of its property crisis since September 2008.

As case files spill out of a room one floor down from the court, officials decline to reveal how many property disputes are under way or pending. A clerk in charge of registering cases hints that the figure may be in the “thousands”.

“We are overwhelmed … it is too much work,” says the clerk, who does not want to be named. “Some cases are small, some are big. People should try and settle with the developer as they will spend more bringing the problem here.”

Just a few months after it opened in 2008, the Property Court had a mammoth challenge on its hands after the property downturn.

The court is a “work in progress”, says Dr Jamal Alsumaiti, the director general of the Dubai Judicial Institute. “You can see there’s movement from the government for regulation and for developing the judicial system as well … it’s a very critical period.”

Ron Oakeley is more than familiar with the Property Court, and the huge investment of money and time that come with a lawsuit.
The British businessman, who has been in Dubai since 1985, is about to attend his 15th hearing in a case filed more than a year ago against Alternative Capital Investment (ACI), a German developer.

Mr Oakeley is trying to recover more than Dh1.2 million (US$327,000) he spent on two offices at ACI’s long-delayed Niki Lauda Twin Towers, one of a trio of projects launched in late 2007.

His efforts, in part, paid off in February when the court rendered his agreement with ACI for one of the units “void” and ordered the company to repay him Dh569,585, plus 5 per cent interest from the date he started proceedings.

The court ruled for Mr Oakeley because ACI had failed to register the property with Dubai’s Land Department, according to court documents. A property contract is valid only when it is registered with the department.

But Mr Oakeley lost the case for the second unit, which cost Dh695,000, because the court found that the property had been registered, although it has since emerged it was under somebody else’s name.

ACI was quick to appeal the decision on the first unit. At yesterday’s hearing, the court decided to appoint an official to check on construction progress at the site, which appears to be at a standstill.

If there is still no conclusion at the next hearing, scheduled for June 23, then the case could go to the Court of Cassation, the final stage in the judicial process.

Mr Oakeley is one of dozens of investors with suits against ACI. He says it has so far cost Dh400,000, including fees and the cost of lawyers. But with the project showing little sign of progressing, he says he has no choice but to fight on.

“It’s the principle … most people can’t afford to keep fighting,” he says. “Unlike elsewhere in the world, you’ve got to spend so much more money to get your rights.

There are hundreds of other projects in the same boat but nobody seems to be helping the people.”

Robin Lohmann, the chief executive of ACI, was unavailable for comment in the past two days.

Property disputes are generally filtered through the Dubai Land Department, where the department’s legal team tried to resolve them before they reach a courtroom.

While there is a surge in the number of investors turning to the department after the financial crisis, fewer people are approaching it today, says Mohammed Sultan Thani, the assistant director general of the Land Department.

“We are now seeing a lot of agreements between the buyer and seller,” Mr Thani adds. “There’s been a lot of movement of buyers between a project that hasn’t started to one that has.”

Since the Property Court is costly, it has mainly been used by major investors such as Mr Oakeley, who have the funds to pursue a case.

It costs Dh30,000 to register each case with the court, so if an investor has bought 10 apartments from one developer, simply lodging the dispute will cost Dh300,000.

As well, all cases require a local lawyer, who will charge a commission of up to 5 per cent of what the client is claiming. The proceedings are in Arabic so a claimant would have to pay for the translation of court documents as required.

“For an investor contemplating filing a legal case against a developer, it is advisable to first seek consultation with a lawyer who can advise whether filing a case makes sense based on the circumstances,” says Ludmila Yamalova, a partner at Al Sayyah Advocates and Legal Consultants.

Some cases have been settled out of court, Ms Yamalova adds, with developers agreeing to reimburse claimants in instalments.

With just four judges at the Property Court, cases can be long. But more than 18 months after it was established, steps are being taken to refine the system, says Dr Alsumaiti – a move that will likely boost confidence among investors.

Four judges are not enough,” he says. “The concept of having a specialised property court isn’t new but the implementation is. The judges need to have the skills and knowledge to understand every single detail of a case. As long has you have provisions to speed up your procedures, you have a very strong legal system.”

Posted in ACI Lohmann Dubai, Dubai court, Dubai Legal - Real Estate Lawsuits, Dubai Property Court, Dubai Property dispute | Tagged: , , , | Comments Off on Dubai Property Court Disaster – Four Judges and over 1000 cases

Dubai Investors wish to get answers: We don’t want our cash back we want Nakheel to build Jebel Ali Palm

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 24, 2010

source Arabian Business
Investors who bought homes on a delayed project by troubled Dubai developer Nakheel are hiring a law firm to represent them as they seek negotiations with the company, a spokeswoman said on Thursday.

“Nakheel have recently informed owners of further delays of at least five to 10 years,” said Aarti Chana, spokeswoman for Palm Jebel Ali Homeowners.

“The owners voiced major concern over the fact that Nakheel’s statement has broken key terms in our contract without seeking owners agreement,” she said.

A Nakheel spokeswoman declined to comment, when reached by Reuters by telephone.
continue reading…

Posted in Dubai, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property legal, Nakheel, Property Investor Dubai | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai Investors wish to get answers: We don’t want our cash back we want Nakheel to build Jebel Ali Palm

Dubai – The result for many buyers of Nakheel Jumeirah Village properties

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 24, 2010

Uninhabitable structures and financial exhaustion !
Frustrating wait for a Villa in Jumeirah Village

source The National May 24. 2010

DUBAI // Buyers of villas in an upmarket development claim they have been thrown into limbo by stalled construction and what they say is a lack of communication from their site developer.

Hundreds of villas and townhouses in Jumeirah Village, a sprawling development on the outskirts of Dubai, were nearing completion in 2008 as the global recession began, which affected the developer, Nakheel, and caused work on the project to be held up. A handful of residences have since been finished and occupied.

Nakheel has acknowledged that the restructuring of its heavily-indebted parent company, Dubai World, affected progress on the community. The result for many buyers of Jumeirah Village properties has been uninhabitable structures and financial exhaustion.

“We’ve paid Dh3 million (US$816,000). It’s gone,” said Mumtaz Desai, a 35-year-old Briton, referring to the two-bedroom Mediterranean style-villa she thought she would be living in with her husband and 14-year-old daughter.

That plan has turned into a money trap for Ms Desai and her family. Promised a handover date of December 2008, repeated delays have forced them to live in a rented apartment in the Jumeirah Lake Towers to save money.

“We’re all squeezing into a little one-bedroom apartment,” she said. “It’s me, my husband and my daughter. She’s always had her own bedroom. We’re like: ‘You’ll just have to suffer a little longer’. But two months of delays has become six, and now it’s nearly three years.”
continue reading…..

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Dubai Property Investors in Dispute – Standoff between buyers and developers

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 20, 2010

source The National original reported by Bradley Hope

Kasim Hammami says he was making a speculative investment when he put a 20 per cent down payment of Dh4.8 million (US$1.3m) on an entire floor of the planned Beachfront Living tower in Dubais Waterfront development in 2007.

It was pure buying and selling of properties, the Syrian businessman said of the strategy for the company he co-founded, New Wave Investments. We would trade three or four properties a year.

But, almost three years later, that investment is at the centre of a dispute between Mr Hammami and the developer, Omniyat Properties, which has sent him a cancellation notice after he defaulted on further payments.

In a property economy that, towards the end of the boom, was dominated by both speculative developers and buyers, many disputes similar to that involving Mr Hammami have ended up in the courts and the halls of the Land Department and Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA). Hundreds of cancellation notices have recently been sent out by developers and the Land Department to buyers who have default.

Everyone in Dubai is pointing the finger at whats called speculators, Mr Hammami said. We all share some responsibilities, including the regulator and the developer. What I would like is fair treatment.

Property laws in Dubai have created a standoff between buyers and developers. Developers are allowed to collect 30 per cent of the value of a property before connecting the remaining payments to construction milestones.

Mr Hammami would have to pay another 10 per cent of the Dh24m he has committed to pay for four apartments, or Dh2.4m, to meet his obligations.

Meanwhile, Omniyat has only recently started construction of the tower after hiring of a contractor to install piling. RERA classifies the project as not having reached the first of five construction milestones. A report on its website from February 23 said the enabling contractor has started mobilising on site and shoring works have started.

According to an official review of the projects escrow account by Caliber Middle East, a consultancy that advises RERA, earlier this year, Omniyat sold more than 200 apartments and collected Dh314.7m.

Of that money and other funds Omniyat invested in the project, Calibers review shows, the company spent Dh237m on land payments and Dh101.6m on marketing expenses. Just Dh738,866 was spent on construction. Omniyat declined to comment last week.

Nakheel, the developer behind the entire 130-square km Waterfront project, has stopped work on it and has not yet announced a plan for future building.

How can I invest more money when the project has barely started, Mr Hammami said.

The two sides have failed to reach an agreement during the past year.

A group of investors applied to RERA to cancel the project last year but did not receive a response, lawyers said. Then, earlier this year the Land Department acted as an intermediary with an offer to lower the price per square foot, but increase the size of the apartments by 20 per cent.

Mohammed Gamal, an investor who signed up to buy a floor of Beachfront Living for Dh35m in 2008, said: Investment entails by its sheer nature the possibility of loss. But, there are principles. It cannot be acceptable under any circumstances than when an external factor like the financial crisis comes that one party wins all and other party loses all.

See also: Questions raised over cancellations

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Investor wins lawsuit against ACI Real Estate Dubai – Development Niki Lauda Twin Tower

Posted by 7starsdubai on March 7, 2010

original source The National
A property investor has been awarded a refund by Dubai Courts for an office unit he bought in a project that is 20 months behind schedule.

The British businessman Ron Oakeley bought two offices in a building in Dubai’s Business Bay that was to be named after the former Formula One racing driver Niki Lauda. The proposed Niki Lauda Twin Towers building was part of a trio of projects launched by Alternative Capital Invest (ACI) Real Estate, a German developer, in late 2007 that were to be
named after famous sport stars. continue reading….

Posted in ACI Real Estate Dubai, Dubai court, Dubai Legal - Real Estate Lawsuits, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Lawsuit Dubai, United Arab Emirates | Tagged: , , , | Comments Off on Investor wins lawsuit against ACI Real Estate Dubai – Development Niki Lauda Twin Tower

Al Fajer Properties Dubai Scandal media blackout

Posted by 7starsdubai on June 20, 2009

May 28. 2009
source Independent by Heerkani Chohan and PropertyWeek

Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Al Maktoum Ebony and Ivory Tower Al Fajer JBC Dubai Fake pictures allegations and a member of the ruling family , Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum, linked to a 429 pound million Dubai property row that has touched nerves across the city.

“Fake” pictures are at the heart of a property scandal that could harm the reputation of the once-booming real estate market in Dubai.

A major property development firm, Al Fajer Properies,  with links to the ruling family of the UAE city-state, and the firm’s marketing agency Dynasty Zarooni, are accused by investors, many of whom are UK citizens, of obtaining millions of pounds through the use of false construction photographs.

On Thursday, after local and regional media had been alerted to the situation by angry investors, news agencies across the city said they were silenced by senior representatives of the Government of Dubai, as orders were issued for reports of the storm to be pulled.

Around 500 property buyers of varying nationalities collectively purchased three planned tower blocks named Ebony 1, Ivory 1 and Ivory 2 in the Jumeirah Lakes Towers area of the Gulf city last year from property development firm Al Fajer Properties, at a total cost of £428 million.

The firm is part of the Al Fajer Group, ran by company president Sheikh Maktoum bin Hasher Al Maktoum, brother-in-law to the supreme ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

But at the weekend it was claimed that Al Fajer Properties and its marketing agent Dynasty Zarooni misled their customers into parting with millions of pounds by presenting photographs showing construction of three buildings, purported to be Ebony 1, Ivory 1 and Ivory 2, up to the sixth storey.

In fact the photographs were of buildings on neighbouring plots. Today, the plots on which Ebony 1, Ivory 1 and Ivory 2 are to be built, are empty holes in the ground, as our photographs show.

“I only handed over my money because I was shown property under construction,” said UK-based Ebony and Ivory Investor’s group spokesperson Moses Oye. “That’s my simple gripe. It’s a black and white issue.”

Mr Oye, who has parted with a little over £1 million – 20% of his total purchase price – had made the seven-hour flight from London to Dubai specifically to chair a press conference to raise awareness of the mess, after official government channels failed to take action.

“We have not sought legal representation as yet,” My Oye said, “because we have tried to square this correctly. The next step will be to go legal.”

However, the press conference was cancelled at the last minute by the hotel where it was to be held, citing “health and safety reasons.” The hotel, Dubai’s Mina A’Salam, is owned by Dubai Holdings, a Dubai government-controlled holding company.

“I asked for the reason to be put in writing, but the hotel refused,” Mr Oye said. “So I asked for a suite. But they said they did not have anything. I personally believe that the powers that be cancelled the meeting.” When contacted, Mina A’Salam management did not respond.

The conference was called to highlight a petition signed by the 500-strong investor’s group urging the Dubai Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera), the government body which oversees the Dubai property market, to force Al Fajer Properties to refund the £86 million that has to date been collected by the firm from investors in the three towers.

After the meeting was axed, news agencies were called to a

neighbouring hotel to be told of the escalating situation. But

when reports began to surface on news websites, news

agencies received phonecalls from senior Dubai

government figures ordering them to be pulled.

“I had written half of the article when I was told by my editor to stop,” said a Dubai-based national newspaper reporter who attempted to cover the story. “The investor’s group have records of payment, and it’s obvious that they have been shafted, but we can’t write about it.”

The lack of progress on the three towers is a source of deep concern for the investors. Many real estate projects across Dubai were put on hold or cancelled as the torrent of easy credit that fuelled rampant development in the city ran dry with the onset of the global financial crisis.

“Whether Al Fajer are still going to construct or not is neither here nor there,” Mr Oye said. “They would not have got my money if they had not shown me fraudulent pictures.” Al Fajer Properties also declined to comment.

Fellow investor’s group spokesperson Atul Patel, who has parted with £600,000 added: “A lot of people would not have bought had they not thought the project was in an advanced stage of construction.”

The pictures also appeared in an advertising campaign in a Dubai-based national newspaper last July, with the caption, “Shot at location on 10th June 2008. Ebony & Ivory – Jumeirah Lakes Towers.” The two page spread included the seals of Dynasty Zaronni and Al Fajer Properties. Dynasty Zarooni also neglected to comment.

The news will further dampen the spirits of the once-booming Dubai real estate market – a vital facet of the city’s economy. Last year a number of senior executives from major property developers across the city were arrested in a high-profile fraud clampdown as the government sought to clean up the property sector.

With it, the global recession has brought a host of new problems. Many construction firms operating in the city, some of which are UK-based, are owed millions of pounds by Dubai property developers struggling with a lack of liquidity.

Among them is UK engineering giant WSP. The firm’s finance director Peter Gill revealed that the firm is owed £28 million by Dubai-based developers, some controlled by the city’s government.

Dubai’s property market has been likened by some to a giant ponzi scheme, where bigger and more grandiose projects were announced in a bid to keep investment rolling in until the financial crisis tamed the city’s galloping development.

At Cityscape Dubai, a major property exhibition held last October, government-controlled developer Nakheel, responsible for the giant palm tree shaped islands off the coast of Dubai, announced it was to build the world’s first 1km high tower. The Nakheel Tower – if ever built – will eclipse the current world’s tallest building, Dubai’s own Burj Dubai.

Meanwhile, state-owned developer Meraas unveiled a mammoth £16.3 billion development called Jumeirah Gardens, to be built in place of an existing residential area in the city.

Today, the plot where the world’s new tallest tower should be under construction is little more than a sun-baked stretch of desert. Work on the Nakheel Tower was halted in January, and work on vast swathes of Jumeirah Gardens has also run aground.

The national media blackout over the Al Fajer case is unusual even in a country gripped by a harsh media law, and a pending new law, that has already drawn criticism for its prohibition of free speech.

A report by the US-based Human Rights Watch group into the UAE’s pending media law, Just the Good News, Please, was published last month. “(The pending law) includes troubling content-based restrictions on speech, draconian fines, and harsh registration requirements,” the report said.

It highlighted a number of the new law’s provisions, branding them: “Not only unlawful intrusions by the government into the right of journalists in the UAE to freely express their thoughts and opinions on any subject of their choosing, but also an unjustified attempt to control the independence of the media.”

Words that will do little to inspire confidence in Mr Oye. “This is going to define my faith in the country,” he said. “If I’m dealt with correctly, great. But at the moment, it’s not going that way. We’re in the witching hour now.”

Heerkani Chohan is the pseudonym of a journalist living and working in Dubai.

Posted in Al Fajer Properties, Dubai, Dubai Property dispute, Dynasty Zarooni, Fraud Dubai, Jumeirah Business Centre, Sheikh Maktoum Al Maktoum, Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Juma Al Maktoum-2 | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Al Fajer Properties Dubai Scandal media blackout

RERA Dubai – Four Dubai Developer under investigation

Posted by 7starsdubai on May 5, 2008

Four Dubai development companies are being subjected to an “internal audit of transactions”, Marwan bin Ghalita, the CEO of Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera) told a Dubai Property Group meeting on Sunday.

“We cannot let people promise and not deliver in Dubai,” he said.
“We want a transparent relationship between parties and have rules and regulations that will be strictly implemented.”
He declined to name the four Dubai developers under investigation.
Last month Damac Properties was involved in a controversy over an attempt to cancel its project Palm Springs on The Palm, Jebel Ali, which has since been reinstated.
Rera has a tough job regulating Dubai realty since its creation last July. Now 2,909 real estate agencies are registered and an estimated 4,000 more illegals in the marketplace have until the end of July to register or face fines.
“From November 1 only licenced agents can advertise property by law,” said Bin Ghalita. “We will not tolerate freelance agents.”
Rera has also licensed 710 development companies, 1,560 projects and 1,487 brokers since its formation, and opened 476 trust accounts worth more than $1.2 billion (Dh4.4bn) with 33 registered banks. “We also want to correct some misleading claims made by developers,” said Bin Ghalita.
“If developers say they sold out in half an hour, how is that possible? If this is advertised they must show data, and not keep us waiting for a month for it.”
In addition, Bin Ghalita said there must be no payment of percentage transfer fees to developers, who are only entitled to claim administration fees for handling such transactions. “Why should developers benefit like this?
It is not their business, we do the transfers.
“He said buyers and sellers should “refuse to pay extra transfer fees”. Bin Ghalita said the proper registration fee is a total of two per cent: one per cent for the buyer and one per cent for the seller.
“Nobody has the right to charge anything else, and please tell me if they do,” he added.

Posted in Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Vereinigte Arabische Emirate | Tagged: , | Comments Off on RERA Dubai – Four Dubai Developer under investigation

Dubai angry Damac Investors launched Website Damacuncovered

Posted by 7starsdubai on April 10, 2008

When Damac Properties unveiled its slick new sales office in central Dublin on Valentine’s Day, it tried to sweeten up Irish property lovers by promising a free Bentley for every apartment they bought in Dubai. They were even entered in a draw to win an island in the Caribbean and a private jet.

But it was all too late: the Irish love affair with overseas property was already over. Damac, which predicted in February that it would book €100m in sales in Ireland this year, closed its doors last week with none of the fanfare that signalled its arrival.

The Middle East’s largest private developer — a purveyor of glitzy skyscrapers overlooking Dubai’s gold-plated shopping malls, golf resorts and beaches — made its foray into Dublin after seeing interest from Irish investors double every year between 2004 and 2007. Peter Riddoch, Damac’s chief executive, claimed that 99% of customers were so confident about the region that they never even made the trip to Dubai to view their acquisitions.

Richard Spence, director of myoverseasproperty.ie, said: “You should never sign anything and buy off plans until you’ve been to the country and walked on the site, but unfortunately a lot of Irish people did. Back in the heyday, just three years ago, inexperienced Irish investors were so swayed by what they read about overseas property in the press and by their neighbours buying abroad that they didn’t do their research.”

source Timesonline UK continue reading……

The Website of the Damac Investors is here…….

Posted in Damac, Damac Palm Springs Jebel Ali Palm, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Real Estate Scandal, Nakheel, Palm Jebel Ali Dubai | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Dubai angry Damac Investors launched Website Damacuncovered

Dubai Shattered Dreams – Jumeriah Islands Nakheel

Posted by 7starsdubai on January 10, 2008

Jumeirah Islands-Dubai
Should a 2 million dirham villa look like this?

source 7days

Residents of Nakheel Jumeirah Islands development allege poor quality finishing and the use of cheap materials at the multi-million dirham luxury villa development. Matthew Brown reports.

“When my wife first walked into the kitchen of our Jumeirah Islands home she burst into tears. ‘It’s terrible,’ she said. It broke my heart, because I had promised her a dream home.”

Mr A is a resident at Jumeirah Islands, the “upscale and exclusive” development from Nakheel, the government-owned company behind The Palms and The World, that stretches over 300 hectares of land between junctions five and six of Sheikh Zayed Road.

And he thinks his villa is anything but a dream home. He is one of 70 or so people to have taken possession of a JI villa, which will eventually house more than 700 families, each of whom paid between dhs1.9 million and dhs2.4 million for their properties in the primary market, or up to double that in the secondary market.

But some of those families are refusing to move in until Nakheel attends to major quality control problems that have affected the development.

Many of those who have already moved in are in dispute with Nakheel over major snagging issues, and have formed a residents committee to take its complaints to Nakheel, which has thus far failed to address the majority of issues, according to documents obtained by 7DAYS and the testimonies of several residents.

Mr A’s list of complaints are typical of Jumeirah Islands’ residents: “My house has been flooded three times. I had no phone, fax or TV for three weeks after I moved in.

Today the telephones only work a fraction of the time, and the Internet provided by Tecom at twice the price of Etisalat regularly fails. To pay the bill I have to go to Internet City with cash.

“Workmen come onto our property uninvited all the time. The whole Jumeirah Islands site stinks, because workers were not provided with toilets for three years. There are rodents everywhere.

“The plans I signed off on do not match the final villa I received. French windows and terraces have been cancelled and a bath has been replaced with a shower in one bathroom.

“In the letters we were sent explaining why there were such considerable delays, we were told it was because the quality would be improved. In fact, the finishes are worse than was originally specified.”

7DAYS visited Mr A’s villa and witnessed poor finishing, and the use of cheap materials. The front door of the villa was a poor fit to the frame; the plaster in many of the walls was blown, and cracks were on most of the walls, causing plaster to fall out in some cases.

There were holes in the marble floor, scratched and stained marble in the downstairs bathroom, and the false ceilings in the bathroom jumped when the door was opened.

7DAYS saw more problems than we have space to fit into this article, and similar issues in three other villas. “If you bought a car and the leather was ripped and the bodywork was scratched, you wouldn’t accept it,” said Mr A.
Mr S moved into his place in August of this year, and is also very unhappy: “We were promised a prestigious development, but so far the development has been below the standards of normal residential complexes carried out in Dubai.

“It seems that Nakheel has done some value engineering to the finishes and the quality of the materials has been downgraded from what I was originally promised,” he continued.

“The finishes need a lot of repairs to be done. Nakheel can and should do better.
We want them to pay more attention to the snags in the finishes, such as the paint on the aluminium in the bathroom, tiles badly fitted and unpolished in the bathroom, poor internal plasterwork and paint finish throughout, as it was done by unskilled labour.”

Jumeirah Islands is being delivered 18 months late, and a number of letters were sent out to future residents, explaining why. “We are delighted to advise that the wondrous Jumeirah Islands project has so appealed to buyers…that it is completely sold out,” said one letter dated June 2004.

“Seeking excellence in all that we do, Nakheel sought ways and means of further enhancing the quality of layout of, and the finishes and materials used in, your home in Jumeirah Islands. You will soon receive details of all the improvements that have been agreed – all at no cost to you.”

On page two of the letter it read: “all of the above improvements and services have resulted in a delay in the completion of the project, which is now scheduled for May 2005. We assure you that this delivery date will be met.”

The first villas were not delivered until August 2005. One of the key complaints by residents has been the poor communication from Nakheel.

“Trying to get answers out of Nakheel, SERCO (hand-over managers), Clifton Coony (project managers), or Semcomb (contractor) has been very difficult,” says Mr S. “We don’t know who to talk to about snags occurring in different parts of the house.”

The complaints about dealing with Nakheel is reiterated by a major insititutional buyer of property in the UAE. “Nakheel sales people’s calibre is not high,” he told 7DAYS.

“They are not able to sensibly talk about numbers at any competent level. Trying to assess what you were buying is difficult to say the least, regardless of who you’re talking to.

“Nakheel constantly makes commitments that aren’t kept. Nakheel does not communicate any problems. Their standard response when you go to their office is that they’re working on it.”

In an attempt to make meaningful contact with Nakheel a committee has been elected by JI residents to act as an intermediary. When approached by 7DAYS, the committee said that they were not ready to talk to the press.

The residents that 7DAYS did talk to, however, found it difficult to contain their disappointment. “If it was completed as per the original concept plan, JI will be one of the best developments in the UAE,” said Mr S.

Nakheel declined to comment despite repeated requests from 7DAYS to respond to residents’ claims.

Posted in Dubai, Dubai Property dispute, Dubai Property Investors, Dubai Real Estate Scandal, Jumeirah Islands Dubai, Nakheel | Tagged: , , , , , | Comments Off on Dubai Shattered Dreams – Jumeriah Islands Nakheel

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