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Sebastian Roberts - Senior Associate - Real Estate
Following the introduction of Law No. (6) of 2019 Regulating Jointly-Owned Property in the Emirate of Dubai (the ‘New JOP Law’), the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (‘RERA’) issued the ‘Declaration of Compliance of Ethical Guideline for Owners’ Committee’ (the ‘Declaration’), to provide further clarity and guidance on the responsibility of those owners who are members of the owners’ committee formed for the project (the ‘Owners’ Committee’).
As outlined in our recent article entitled ‘A new era for jointly owned property in Dubai‘, a key difference between the New JOP Law and the previous law is the role that the owners of units in a project will now play in the administration, operation and management of a project.
Moving forwards, the Owners’ Committee will be appointed by RERA and will consist of up to nine owners, who will represent the collective body of all owners in the project and there will no longer be an ‘Owners’ Association’.
The Owners’ Committee (which will be formed when title to at least 10 per cent of the units in the project has been registered in the name of owners) will play an advisory role in the day-to-day running of the project. The primary responsibility for the administration, operation and management of a project remains with the appointed RERA licensed and approved management company (the ‘Managing Agent’).
Article 24 of the New JOP Law sets out the functions of the Owners’ Committee, some which are as follows:
In accordance with Article 22(c) of the New JOP Law, an owner who wishes to be a member of the Owners’ Committee must:
If at any time a member of the Owners’ Committee fails to satisfy the above requirements, that member will no longer be eligible to be on the Owners’ Committee and that owner’s membership may be terminated by RERA.
Provided that the developer owns unsold units in the project, the developer will be entitled to be a member on the Owners’ Committee (subject to RERA’s approval of such nomination).
The Owners’ Committee is required to meet quarterly, with the first meeting to be held within 30 days from the date of formation.
Each member shall have one vote when voting on the decisions and recommendations of the Owners’ Committee.
Given that there will only be up to nine committee members in total, it is necessary that appropriate guidelines are put in place to ensure the Owners’ Committee represents the interests of all owners and occupiers to the best extent possible.
The Declaration issued by RERA sets out the general obligations of a committee member. In particular, a committee member must:
Should an owner wish to be a member of the Owners’ Committee, it is important that the owner has a thorough understanding of its obligations under the New JOP Law and the Declaration. An owner who fails to comply with its obligations in this respect may have their membership terminated by RERA.
RERA has issued the prescribed application form for owners to submit to the Managing Agent to become a member of the Owners’ Committee, with the Managing Agent to submit the completed form and supporting documents (outlined below) to RERA.
On face value, the form itself is relatively straight forward and will be easy for owners to complete and submit. When submitting an application, an owner will be required to submit the following documents along with the signed application form:
The approval of any application to be on the Owners’ Committee will be subject to the approval of RERA.
Al Tamimi has a wealth of experience in advising developers, owners and other stakeholders on jointly owned property and is in regular contact with RERA to clarify matters arising out of the New JOP Law and the issuance of the directions to the New JOP Law.
Should you have any queries regarding the Owners’ Committee or how the New JOP Law affects your project (both as a developer or a unit owner), Al Tamimi would be happy to assist. Once the directions for the New JOP Law are issued, Al Tamimi will be running workshops on the New JOP Law, the directions and what stakeholders can do to align their project with the new jointly owned property regime. Should you be interested to attend this workshop, please get in touch and we will ensure that you are notified once dates for the workshop(s) are confirmed.
Disclaimer: This chat service should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional advice which takes account of your specific circumstances and any changes in the law and practice. No warranty is made as to the accuracy or completeness of the information provided via this service and no liability is accepted by Al Tamimi & Company Limited, its affiliates, partners or employees for any loss arising as a result of reliance upon the information provided.
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