What are ADGM Courts?

The Abu Dhabi Global Market Courts (ADGM) was established in the year 2016. To understand the functioning of Courts it is most important to understand about the meaning of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM). The ADGM is a second financial free zone in UAE followed by Dubai International Finance Centre (DIFC). The ADGM is situated in the capital city of UAE i.e. Abu Dhabi and it provides 100 percent shareholding to the business established within its premises.

Thus, in order to seek good foreign investments it is also important to provide robust legal framework to adjudicate the cases speedy and independently. Therefore, the ADGM Courts were established for providing speedy and independent administration of justice. The ADGM Courts follows and works upon the principle of English Common Law System. Furthermore, the official language of ADGM Courts is English. The disputes such as commercial or civil whether national, regional or worldwide are amenable to the jurisdiction of ADGM Courts.

What is the jurisdiction is of ADGM Courts?

The ADGM Courts entertains the disputes relating to civil and commercial nature which also includes domestic and international financial transactions and employment disputes.


Moreover, if the rights of any party in relations to Torts or personal injury have been violated then such disputes are also adjudicated by ADGM Courts. The ADGM Courts have powers in regard to execution or passing of Arbitral Awards. Furthermore, section 16 of the ADGM Court rules and regulation provides power of ADGM Courts to decide and adjudicate the matters which involve disputes arising from ADGM or any of its authorities or establishments.

Moreover, it also provides ‘OPT-IN’ or ‘OPT-OUT’ jurisdiction mechanism to the parties signatory to contracts which means parties amenable to the jurisdiction of ADGM Courts can ‘OPT-OUT’ from the jurisdiction and parties which are not otherwise entitled to the jurisdiction of ADGM Courts can invoke its jurisdiction by adopting ‘OPT-IN’ mechanism in their contracts. It is pertinent to mention here that ADGM Courts does not have jurisdiction over criminal matters and family matters.

How many types of courts are there in ADGM?

The legal framework of ADGM is classified into five categories depending upon the nature of the disputes. The classification is mentioned herein under;


  • Claims and Dispute bearing value of USD100, 000 or less.
  • Matters relating to Employment disputes, wherein the parties to the dispute have agreed in writing to settle their claims and disputes within the jurisdiction of ADGM Small claims Tribunal.


The civil Division has jurisdiction over cases where claim amount exceeds USD100,000. This division also has power to entertain appeals in relation to the judgments passed by Small Cause Divisions. Thus, this division does not have jurisdiction over matters arising out of family disputes or employment matters.


The employment division have exclusive jurisdiction over claims and disputes in relation to the enforcement of rights and duties in compliance of Employment Regulations of 2015. Moreover, it also deals in the cases where claims regarding employments are involved such as illegal or arbitrary termination from employment and many other such disputes.


This Court holds single judge proceedings having a complete jurisdiction over the disputes mentioned below;

  • Disputes emanating from establishments/entities operating within or registered under ADGM laws.
  • Disputes arising from breach of contract which involves jurisdiction of ADGM Courts.
  • Objections and Appeals arising from impugned orders passed by ADGM regulatory bodies which fall under ADGM laws.
  • Civil and Commercial Nature Disputes


The Court of Appeal has competence to hear appeals from verdicts or decisions issued by the Court of First Instance, as well as to interpret any provisions of the ADGM statutes and regulations. There is no automatic right to appeal against Civil and Employment Division judgements. A party must request authorization to appeal the verdict to either the Court of First Instance or the Court of Appeal. An appeal from a Small Claims Division ruling can only be entertained if it involves question of law. The decisions rendered by the Court of Appeal are considered to be final and cannot be challenged.

ADGM courts were established with an aim to ensure highest international standards of legal procedure are met out and in order to provide fast, reliable and efficient services to the global institutions.

Nour Attorneys Law Firm tends to provides best services to its clients and ensures that their rights may be protected in any situation. Moreover, our highly qualified team of lawyers and legal consultants has expertise in defending and contesting cases before the ADGM Courts and presenting our clients in arbitral proceedings. Our law firm cooperates with the clients to prepare litigation claims before the institutional and special courts and to represent the client and plead before said courts in order to achieve client’s best interests by assigning the task to a licensed lawyer who is highly experienced and fully capable of pleading before courts.