Al Tamimi & Company

UAE: the standard of care for special care objects and equipment and the extent of liability of its custodian

The responsibility for objects that need special care or sophisticated mechanical equipment lies with the person who is in control of said objects. This responsibility could, if the needed care is not exercised, make the person controlling said objects liable for direct damages caused by the objects and perhaps even indirect damages.

An insurance company (the Claimant) filed for legal action before Sharjah Court of First Instance against another insurance Company (the First Respondent) and an Oil Company (the Second Respondent) seeking a court order for damages. The Claimant brought proceedings on the basis that a fire broke out at the storehouses owned by the Oil Company and caused damages to nearby warehouses. The Claimant, as the insurer for the affected neighboring warehouses, indemnified its owners. The Claimant consequently pursued a subrogated claim against the First and the Second Respondents seeking a court order against the Respondents with an amount exceeding AED 40 millions and interest.

The Claimant relied in its action on provisions of Article 316 of the UAE Civil Code (the Law) which provides “Any person who has things under his control which require special care in order to prevent their causing harm, or mechanical equipment, shall be liable for any harm done by such things or equipment, save to the extent that harm could not have been averted, without prejudice to any special provisions in this regard”…

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Al Sila Tower
Level 26
Al Sowwah Square
Al Maryah Island
Abu Dhabi
PO Box 440
United Arab Emirates

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