Al Tamimi & Company Triumphs in ADGM Court of Appeal 

Al Tamimi & Company recently achieved a significant success as legal representatives for the appellants in a groundbreaking ADGM Court of Appeal case that delved into the interpretation of Article 1(1) of the ADGM Application of English Law Regulations 2015. This Article stipulates: 

“The common law of England (including the principles and rules of equity), as it stands from time to time, shall apply and have legal force in, and form part of the law of the Abu Dhabi Global Market.” 

The ADGM Court of Appeal, in the case of AC Network Holding Limited & Ors v Polymath Ekar SPV & Ors [2023] ADGMCA 0002, emphasized that this rule is foundational to the legal system of ADGM. The court distinguished ADGM from the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), noting that in the DIFC, common law rules are codified, and English law is applied only if local rules or laws of other relevant legal systems do not provide an answer. 

The case centered on a start-up car-sharing company, where majority shareholders invoked their right to serve a drag-along notice, requiring minority shareholders to participate in selling the share capital. The trial judge found breaches of the shareholders’ agreement but dismissed a claim of “unlawful means” conspiracy, stating reliance on legal advice. 

The ADGM Court of Appeal, comprising Lord David Hope CJ, Justice Kenneth Hayne, and Justice Sir Peter Blanchard, disagreed with the trial judge, emphasizing that ADGM Court judges must adhere to the rule laid down by Article 1(1). The judgment highlighted the importance of precedent in English law, providing certainty and predictability, making the ADGM Courts an attractive forum for dispute resolution. 

Al Tamimi & Company, led by Partner Rita Jaballah (pictured) and supported by Peter Wood, Senior Counsel, Muhammad Mahmood, Senior Associate, and Kareem Bessisso, Associate, played a crucial role in securing this landmark victory.