Alsuwaidi & Company

How to apply for bail in the UAE

REDA HEGAZY’s recent contribution to the Gulf News focuses on how to apply for bail in the UAE.

AS PUBLISHED IN GULF NEWS

Gulf News spoke with legal experts in the UAE to find out details of how a person can apply for bail, what are the implications of being out on bail and what you can do if there is no family member or friend to bail you out.

To release the accused provisionally while the criminal case is still pending, the public prosecution or the court, as the case may be, would require him or her to give a reasonable guarantee that he or she will appear whenever his or her presence is required. The law provides the public prosecutor or the criminal court with discretionary powers in determining bail conditions.

Do I always have to submit my passport to get bail?

Reda Hegazy, Senior Associate and Arbitrator at Alsuwaidi and Company, provided details of how a bail application is submitted and processed by UAE authorities.

“To release the accused provisionally while the criminal case is still pending, the public prosecution or the court, as the case may be, would require him or her to give a reasonable guarantee that he or she will appear whenever his or her presence is required. The law provides the public prosecutor or the criminal court with discretionary powers in determining bail conditions,” Hegazy said.

This, he said, can mean retaining the accused’s passport, or the passports of his family members or friends. Additionally, a judge may even consider releasing an accused on bail based on a financial guarantee, with or without the passport. The financial guarantee needs to be deposited in in the public prosecution office or the court.

“Dubai’s smart bail allows those charged with minor offences, particularly misdemeanours, to get bail online without having to surrender their passports. However, the accused will be banned from leaving the country and his or her name would be placed on the travel ban list,” Hegazy added.

How long does the process take?

Speaking of how long the process takes, Hegazy said that it depends largely on each case.

“Based on the facts of the case and other parameters, we may say that sometimes the decision on bail request is issued on the same day, and if the Public Prosecution is awaiting results from the Forensic Department, it may take up to 20 days or more to get a decision on the bail request,” he said.

Is there any processing fee that needs to be paid?

There is no fee payable to process the application requesting bail.

What if I don’t have friends or family who can apply for bail?

A request for bail to the Public Prosecution or to the Court can be submitted by the accused as well, apart from his or her lawyer or first-degree relative, according to Hegazy.