Demystifying VAT on Law Services in Dubai, UAE: Complete Guide

Dubai VAT services

Dubai VAT Services

The introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT) in Dubai in 2018 sent ripples through various industries, including the legal sector. With a standard rate of 5% applied to most taxable goods and services, questions arose about the impact on legal fees and client budgets. This article aims to shed light on VAT Service on law services in Dubai, navigating through the complexities and, clarifying the implications for both legal professionals and clients.

Standard VAT Rate on Legal Services:

The good news is that the standard 5% VAT rate applies to most legal services in Dubai. This includes services like:

  • Contract drafting and review
  • Dispute resolution and litigation
  • Corporate and commercial law
  • Intellectual property law
  • Insolvency and bankruptcy law
  • Family law
  • Immigration law

Essentially, if a legal service is not explicitly exempted or categorized as zero-rated, it falls under the standard 5% VAT bracket.

Exemptions and Zero-Rating:

However, not all legal services are subject to VAT. Some key exemptions include:

  • Legal services provided to the government
  • However,  Court fees and related charges
  • Mediation and arbitration services
  • Education and awareness-raising activities related to legal topics

Furthermore, certain legal services are categorized as zero-rated, meaning VAT is charged at a 0% rate. These include:

  • Legal services related to public welfare (e.g., environmental protection, consumer protection)
  • Services provided to charities and non-profit organizations
  • Specific types of financial and insurance services

However,  Legal professionals must understand these exemptions and zero-rating categories to accurately calculate and communicate any applicable VAT to their clients.

Implications for Legal Professionals:

For legal firms and individual lawyers, VAT compliance requires several adjustments:

  • However,  Registration for VAT with the Federal Tax Authority (FTA) if exceeding the mandatory registration threshold.
  • Issuing proper tax invoices with a clear breakdown of the service fee and VAT amount.
  • Maintaining accurate accounting records to track VAT payable and refundable.
  • Filing periodic VAT returns and making timely payments to the FTA.

However,  Navigating these requirements can be complex, and seeking professional guidance from tax advisors or accountants is highly recommended.

Implications for Clients:

Clients seeking legal services in Dubai need to be aware of the potential VAT add-on to their legal fees. Here’s what they should know:

  • Understand that most legal services will attract a 5% VAT Service charge unless exempted or zero-rated.
  • However,  Request a clear breakdown of fees in any proposed engagement, including any applicable VAT amount.
  • Factor VAT into their legal budget alongside the base service fee.
  • Clients registered for VAT may be able to claim input tax credits for the paid legal services used for their business activities.

However, Transparency and open communication between legal professionals and clients are crucial to ensure clarity and prevent potential disputes regarding VAT charges.


While VAT adds a new layer of complexity to legal transactions in Dubai, understanding its application to law services is essential for both legal professionals and clients. However,  By keeping abreast of the regulations, maintaining accurate records, and communicating transparently, all parties involved can navigate the landscape smoothly and focus on the core legal matters at hand.

Disclaimer: This article provides general information about VAT on law services in Dubai and is not intended as tax advice. However,  For specific guidance, please consult with a qualified tax professional.

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Lucy Jones is a freelance content writer and blogger, She loves to spend our free time with family.