Our Notable Cases

Commercial Litigation in the DIFC Courts

KBH represented the Defendant in a family dispute. The Defendant was the subject of a freezing and injunction order where there were extant proceedings in the Dubai Courts. The case was the first to consider the DIFC Courts’ jurisdiction where there are ongoing proceedings in the Dubai Courts as well as the DIFC Courts’ power to grant a Black Swan injunction.

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KBH is representing the Claimants in a financial mis-selling case.  The proceedings are at the early stages.  KBH has successfully defended a strike out and immediate judgment application. The judgment is the first reported case to consider whether the limitation period of 6 years, as set out in the Article 38 of the Court Law No. 10 of 2004  contains an exception for fraud in every case, or only in cases where the applicable law expressly provides that the limitation period will be suspended or extended to run from the date of knowledge in cases where fraud is alleged.

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KBH successfully represented the First Defendant in the first cryptocurrency case in the Technology and Construction Division of the DIFC Courts. The claim related to the transfer and storage of bitcoins and the DIFC Courts determined (in line with other common law jurisdictions) that Bitcoins are (tangible) property. It is one of the few cases in the world that addresses the issue of safe transfer of cryptocurrency between the buyer and seller and the obligations owed to a custodian of the cryptocurrency. The case highlighted the importance of digital asset disputes in the DIFC Courts, and in December 2022 the DIFC Courts unveiled the launch of a new set of industry-first specialised rules for its newly formed Digital Economy Court Division.

KBH continued to represent the First Defendant in the DIFC Court of Appeal.

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KBH represented the Defendant in enforcing the provisions of a lease where, citing the Covid-19 pandemic, the Claimant sought to rely on a force majeure clause to avoid its obligations.

KBH acted for the Claimants in proceedings before the former Chief Justice Michael Hwang, former Judicial Commissioner of the Supreme Court of Singapore, in a claim involving a breach and subsequent termination of an SPA in the absence of a contractual termination clause in the SPA.

KBH acted for the Respondent at the return date hearing, pro-bono, in respect of an application for a freezing injunction and search order before the former DCJ Sir John Chadwick.

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KBH acted for the Claimant in respect of a claim for the breach of an SPA and the enforceability of a force majeure clause.

KBH acted for the Second and Third Defendants in respect of a breach of a services contract, before the former Deputy Chief Justice of the DIFC Courts, Sir David Steel, former Judge of the Commercial and Admiralty Courts, England & Wales and the former Chairman of the European Commercial Judges Forum.

This case developed important aspects of DIFC law including the jurisdiction of the DIFC courts and the DIFC’s law of obligations (Article 56 of DIFC Law No. 5 of 2005.)

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KBH acted for the Claimants in the largest financial mis-selling case in the GCC region before the former Deputy Chief Justice of the DIFC Courts, Sir John Chadwick, formerly the Lord Justice of Appeal in England & Wales.

This case remains one of the most ground-breaking cases in the DIFC which developed the law in multiples areas including matters of jurisdiction and costs.

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KBH acted on behalf of a liquidator of various DIFC and US companies in successfully resisting a jurisdiction challenge brought by a Swiss bank in resisting claims by the liquidators to have certain pledges made by fraudulent directors declared invalid as well as subsequent enforcement proceedings against the Bank in Switzerland.

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Commercial Litigation in the English High Court

KBH acted for the Defendants in seeking a declaration as to the applicability of the Treaty between UK and UAE on Judicial Assistance. In addition, KBH represented the Second Defendant in a Part 71 application.

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Instructed on behalf of the Claimant in proceedings in the High Court in London in one of the highest priced match-fixing cases in cricket.


Employment litigation in the DIFC

KBH acts for a leading mining executive in a claim for $30m of lost bonus, and successfully defended a jurisdiction challenge.


KBH acted for for the Managing Partner of DWF in relation to a contractual claim.
KBH acted for the Defendants in claims brought by a former employer in the UK for procuring a breach and a breach of contract/injunctive relief against its former broker. Despite the fact that the contract was governed by a UK jurisdiction clause, the DIFC courts seized jurisdiction on the basis that the new employer was located in the DIFC, and the DIFC Court was able to apply UK law as a foreign law. The matter was listed for a two week hearing at the end of 2020 but settled.
KBH acted for the former Regional Chief Executive, of SCB, Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan in respect of his claim for breach of a settlement agreement in respect of a future bonus payment.

KBH acted for the Claimant in his claim for termination benefits. Setting a precedent on the applicability of a penalty payment under Article 18(2) of the old Employment Law, where the employers failed to pay the employee’s termination entitlements within 14 days. The Court of Appeal affirmed the construction of Article 18(2), which resulted in a change of the law.

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KBH actedfor the Defendant in a successful application for security for costs against a former employer

1. Raul Silva v United Investment Bank [2014] DIFC CA 004

Bushra Ahmed (instructed by Stephenson Harwood (Middle East) LLP acted for the Respondent before the DIFC Court of Appeal as to the test for ‘reasonable employer’ under the old DIFC Employment Law.


KBH acted for a pregnant employee in relation to claims of discrimination.

Arbitration Proceedings
  1. Acted for the Respondent in an ICC arbitration in respect of a marine construction dispute.
  2. Acted for the Respondent in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration in respect of an option agreement as well as defending an injunction and freezing order obtained in the DIFC Courts in aid of the arbitration.
  3. Acted for the Claimant in a DIAC arbitration claim for damages involving breaches arising out of a franchise agreement with a Saudi entity.
  4. Acted for the Respondent in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration in relation to breach of a litigation funding agreement.
  5. Acted for the Clamant in an ICC arbitration dealing with breach under an SPA and the failure by the developer to hand over by the anticipated completion date.
  6. Acted for a Claimant in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration dealing with issues relating to the notice provisions in the DIFC Real Property Law, as well as the cure provisions provided for in Article 80 of the DIFC Contract Law.
  7. Acting for the Claimant in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration in connection with the recovery of USD 25 million from the borrower (together with those individuals and entities who had guaranteed the borrower’s liability) under a credit facility agreement. Concurrent possession proceedings were commenced in the UK against a residential property used as security.
  8. Acting for the Respondent in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration in connection with a distributor agreement.
  9. Acted for the Respondents in respect of USD 180 million DIFC-LCIA arbitration concerning a Shareholders Agreement as well as an option agreement with a time of the essence clause.
  10. Advising in a third-party disclosure exercise in a DIFC-LCIA a
  11. Acted for the Claimant in an ICC arbitration, under a provision for services contract relating to an infrastructure project in Pakistan. The seat of the arbitration was Paris, and French law was applicable.
  12. Instructed in an ad-hoc DIFC-LCIA arbitration in Bahrain under the FIDIC Silver Book.
  13. Acting for the Claimant in successfully obtaining a worldwide freezing order in the DIFC Courts to freeze assets up to USD 80 million to secure an Indian arbitral award that was to be enforced in the DIFC and Dubai Courts.
  14. Acting for a Claimant bank in a DIFC-LCIA arbitration in relation to a facility in the sum of USD 25,000,000. Commenced possession proceedings in the UK in relation to security under personal guarantees, which was stayed following a hearing in the High Court, and in respect of the enforceability of an arbitration agreement in the facility agreement.
  15. Representing in an ICC arbitration in respect of an issue of contractual interpretation under French Law, and the application of the French Civil Code and European Agency Law.
Advisory work

Commercial Advisory Work

  1. Advised a high-net-worth individual in respect of being sold leveraged, and highly risky, bespoke investment products, against an international investment bank.
  2. Advised minority shareholders in respect of a complex shareholder dispute.
  3. Advised a DIFC liquidator in respect of DIFC liquidations.
  4. Advised a group of investors onshore in respect of mis-selling of investments.
  5. Instructed by a Singaporean law firm to provide an expert report on DIFC Regulatory Law in relation to financial mis-selling proceedings in the Singapore Court.
  6. Acted for a Private Equity Fund in the DIFC in the Financial Markets Tribunal, dealing with multi- jurisdictional issues across the Cayman Islands and onshore Dubai, dealing with issues in respect of the Regulatory Law, Collective Investment Law, COB Rules, GEN Rules, touching on issues of misconduct, integrity and fitness to practice of an Authorised Individual.
  7. Advised and representing a company in breach of the UAE Financial Regulatory Law and the Dubai Financial Services Authority Rules.
  8. Advised an UHNWI as an exiting shareholder in respect of his exit from a billion-dollar GCC company.
Employment advisory work
  1. Acted for a compliance officer of a swiss bank in his claim for religious discrimination which he was subjected to when he converted from Christianity to Islam.
  2. Advised on a team move from one of the largest trading houses which was fought in the High Court in London with claims for breach of contract, injunctive relief and constructive unfair dismissal.
  3. Advised a female senior banker of a large international bank in relation to her exit strategy and possible claims for breach of contract
  4. Advised a senior executive of a major conglomerate in respect of the enforceability of his terms of employment.
  5. Advised a senior employee of an international bank in relation to claims against against the bank.
  6. Advised a high-profile employee in relation to his redundancy package offered in the UAE, considering the fact that the laws of England and Wales governed his employment contract.
  7. Advised a senior and highly-regarded banking executive in the UAE in relation to the termination of his employment without warning and with a very modest redundancy package.
  8. Advised a former employee in relation to his end of service entitlements pursuant to UAE Labour Law.
  9. Acted for a senior partner in an extremely confidential and highly sensitive matter, negotiating his exit from an international law firm.
  10. Acted for senior counsel in a very sensitive and highly confidential case, concerning discrimination on the grounds of gender and being subjected to discriminatory conduct by the management team.
  11. Advised a client in respect of his end of service entitlements and post-termination restrictive covenants along with his options for settlement or pursuing a potential claim in the DIFC Courts.
  12. Advised a former Business Head and Accountant in relation to his end of service benefits and payments due under his employment agreement and payments arising out of a settlement agreement.
  13. Advised a high-net-worth individual in respect of his exit arrangements from a large investment fund.
  14. 14. Advised an employee in respect of his duties as an employee pursuant to a Dubai Financial Services Authority investigation.
  15. Advised a former Senior Executive at a Private Equity and Global Investment Company in respect of discrimination on the grounds of age and being subjected to discriminatory conduct by the company.
  16. Acted for a senior female Emirati employee of an international bank, in respect of claims for discrimination, pursuant to which a pre-action disclosure application was pursued for information relating to the practices of the bank in promoting Emirati Women.
  17. Acted for a government entity in respect of an employment dispute.
  18. Acted for the compliance officer of a leading financial institution in a claim for whistleblowing and discrimination.