Skip to Content

Practice Direction no. 4 of 2016 Neutral Citation of DIFC Courts Judgments

Practice Direction no. 4 of 2016 Neutral Citation of DIFC Courts Judgments

October 20, 2016





Neutral Citation of DIFC Courts Judgments


This Practice Direction will come into effect on the date of signature. It may be cited as Practice Direction 4 of 2016 Neutral Citation of DIFC Courts Judgments and may be abbreviated to PD 4/2016.

1.This Practice Direction shall apply as regards all judgments of the DIFC Courts, those which have already been issued as well as those which are issued subsequent to it coming into effect.

2. A form of neutral citation will be introduced for judgments issued from the Small Claims Tribunal, Court of First Instance and Court of Appeal of the DIFC Courts.

3. A unique number will be given by the DIFC Courts Registry to each approved judgment issued by the DIFC Courts. The judgments will be numbered in the following way:

Small Claims Tribunal      [2016] DIFC SCT 1,2,3 etc.

Court of First Instance       [2016] DIFC CFI 1,2,3 etc.

Court of Appeal                [2016] DIFC CA 1,2,3 etc.

4. Under these new arrangements, para 29 in Smith v Jones, the twelfth numbered judgment of the year in the DIFC Courts Court of First Instance, would be cited:

Smith v Jones [2016] DIFC CFI 12 at [29].

5. The neutral citation will be the official number attributed to the judgment by the DIFC Courts and will be used on at least one occasion:

(i) when the judgment is cited in a later judgment; and

       (ii) when the judgement is cited in submissions or other documents filed by practitioners.

6. If a judgment is cited on more than one occasion, only one abbreviation (if desired) will be used. Thus Smith v Jones [2016] DIFC CFI 12 could be abbreviated to Smith v Jones, or Smith’s case, but preferably not both in the same judgment or other document.

7. If it is desired to cite more than one paragraph of a judgment each numbered paragraph should be enclosed with a square bracket. Thus: Smith v Jones [2016] DIFC CFI 12 at [35]-[40], or Smith v Jones [2016] DIFC CFI 12 at [35], [40], and [50]-[53].

8. Once the judgment is reported, the citation from the law report series will be used and the neutral citation will appear before that citation.

9. The neutral citation arrangements for judgments may be extended to include other reasoned orders of the DIFC Courts.

10. Where a judgment issued by the DIFC Courts is redacted so as to ensure that parties’ names remain anonymous in the interests of confidentiality, in accordance with PD 3/2016, the neutral names will be used in place of the actual names of the parties within the neutral citation.


Dated this 20 day of October 2016 

Chief Justice Michael Hwang




Privacy Policy

The Dubai International Financial Centre and all its affiliates are committed to preserve the confidentiality, integrity and availability of client data and personal information.

Dubai International Financial Centre and all its affiliates employees, vendors, contract workers, shall follow Information Security Management System in all the processes and technology.

  1. DIFC Courts's Top Management is committed to secure information of all our interested parties.
  2. Information security controls the policies, processes, and measures that are implemented by DIFC Courts in order to mitigate risks to an acceptable level, and to maximize opportunities in order to achieve its information security objectives.
  3. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall adopt a systematic approach to risk assessment and risk treatment.
  4. DIFC Courts is committed to provide information security awareness among team members and evaluate the competency of all its employees.
  5. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall protect personal information held by them in all its form.
  6. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall comply with all regulatory, legal and contractual requirements.
  7. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall provide a comprehensive Business Continuity Plan encompassing the locations within the scope of the ISMS.
  8. Information shall be made available to authorised persons as and when required.
  9. DIFC Courts’s Top Management is committed towards continual improvement in information security in all our processes through regular review of our information security management system.


The content of the DIFC Courts website is provided for information purposes only and should be disregarded when making decisions on inheritance and any other matters. Whilst every reasonable effort is made to make the information and commentary accurate and up to date, the DIFC Courts makes no warranties or representations to you as to the accuracy, authenticity or completeness of the content on this website, which is subject to change at any time without notice. The information and commentary does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice by the DIFC Courts or any person employed or connected with it or formerly so employed or connected, to any person on any matter, be it in relation to inheritance, succession planning or otherwise. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal advice from a suitably qualified lawyer in relation to your personal circumstances and your objectives. The DIFC Courts does not assume any liability and shall not be liable to you for any damages, including but not limited to, direct or indirect, special, incidental or consequential damages, losses or expenses arising in connection with this website, its administration and any content or lack thereof found on it. The information on this web site is not to be displayed except in full screen format. Although care has been taken to provide links to suitable material from this site, no guarantee can be given about the suitability, completeness or accuracy of any of the material that this site may be linked to or other material on the internet. The DIFC Courts cannot accept any responsibility for the content of material that may be encountered therein.