Guardian Wealth Management has advised residents to be more aware of the fact that their UAE bank accounts can be easily frozen.
Globally, the wealth adviser says, accounts tend to be frozen for suspicious transactions. In the UAE, however, a visa change or visa expiry tends to be the usual reason.
This, of course, can result in delayed rent, utility and school fee payments
“Most people don’t know that in the UAE when a person changes, leaves or loses their job, the final salary payment which should include their end-of-service benefits, will also mention that this is the final payment to the bank,” says Hamzah Shalchi, regional director of Guardian Wealth Management in the Middle East.
“The statement will highlight that the person is no longer working for the company, which, in turn, can automatically send warning signals if debts haven’t been paid. This can include anything from car and personal loans, [to] parking fines or even a large unpaid credit card bill.”
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Account can also be frozen when a person passes away and can only be reactivated by an order from the UAE’s Sharia courts, which can take several months.
“It is crucial that the surviving family are able to provide an up to date, valid will whilst making sure that all debts of the deceased have been cleared,” says Hamzah. “Without a will, it may be an extremely long journey for families in an extremely hard time.”
Other reasons why accounts are frozen include arrest, liability in an accident and owing money to their employer.