The DIFC Courts, the UAE’s English-language common law judicial system based in the Dubai International Financial Centre, have achieved very high ratings in 2012 from influential international and UAE-based surveys.
The international survey was developed by the International Association for Court Administration (IACA) and is used by leading judiciaries across the globe.
IACA’s ’International Framework for Courts Excellence’ shows that the DIFC Courts’ systems and processes have been rated alongside the best commercial courts worldwide.
The DIFC Courts scored 100% on affordability, accessibility, resources and planning - with scores of 90% or more for leadership and management.
The Courts received a ’total weighted score’ of 900 points out of one thousand, based on criteria such as public trust and confidence, client needs and satisfaction, court resources and court leadership.
The UAE survey had a different but equally important focus: customer service and engagement. It was conducted by ARA Marketing Research & Consultancy of Dubai in three waves, beginning in January 2012. Through various mechanisms for gauging satisfaction - including the use of ’mystery shoppers’, as well as telephonic and direct contact - lawyers and other court users have either expressed considerable satisfaction or received improved perceptions since the previous survey in 2011.
ARA report that the DIFC Courts scored as high as 96% in areas related to court appearance, courtesy, helpfulness and knowledge of staff, as well as the overall experience. The level of performance within the courts, as monitored through the mystery shopping facility, showed results of up to 93% for efficiency through e-mail responses, and 83% through face to face interactions.
Mark Beer, DIFC Courts’ Registrar, said, "These successes align our Courts with the UAE vision as expressed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in his 41st National Day message."
He emphasised, "One of the nation’s goals would be taking the UAE to the ranks of the developed countries and beyond’ and added that the UAE needed to realise a powerful knowledge-based economy to guarantee its leading edge in global competitiveness."
"The results demonstrate our commitment to this approach. The quality of the systems and the service that our Courts provide to the UAE and regional business community support the UAE’s future as an international business hub," he added.
Reem Al Shihhe, Head of HR and Business Excellence, commented, "I am proud of the high scores in both surveys. We always value court users’ feedback, and this has helped us as an organisation to refine and improve our services. A Court is about people: our interaction with the legal profession and the public is crucial and our constant assessment of performance ensures we keep to the highest standards."
The DIFC Courts, winners of a third consecutive UAE Government Star Customer Service Award in 2012, pride themselves on their improving customer service and offer Courts’ users swift, transparent and independent justice to resolve financial, commercial and civil disputes across the UAE, the GCC and beyond. The DIFC Courts were established in 2004, to create an independent and world-class courts system in English, based on common law.