How to start a legal consultancy business in Dubai or the UAE
Legal consultancies are in demand in every corner of the globe, but particularly so in the UAE. Between the 400,000 SMEs, 4000 start-ups and 8.84 million expatriates operating in the UAE, there’s a staggering demand for experienced consultants who are qualified to help navigate the region’s legal systems. In this article, we will explore how to start a legal consultancy in Dubai or the UAE, focussing on the following topics:
- Why start your legal consultancy in the UAE?
- How to start a law firm in the UAE – step-by-step
- Documents required to get a legal consultancy license in the UAE
- Cost of setting up a legal consultancy in the UAE
- How to grow your legal consultancy business in the UAE
- Why choose SPC Free Zone
Why start your legal consultancy in the UAE?
The UAE is ripe with opportunity for legal consultancies. With so many SMEs and startups operating in the region, there are countless benefits to opening a legal consultancy in the UAE, including:
- High expatriate population
There are now around 8.84 million expats living in the UAE, accounting to approximately 89% of the population. That’s a huge pool of potential business owners with specific legal requirements, many of whom will be unfamiliar with the legal processes of setting up a company internationally.
- Business-friendly infrastructure
The UAE is one of the most digitally connected countries in the world, with an aim for full 5G coverage by 2025. It’s also one of the easiest places in the world to start a business, particularly with the help of a company formation service like SPC Free Zone.
- Opportunity to operate globally
The UAE enjoys a strategic location in the heart of the Middle East. As well as being within easy reach of MENA’s many major business hubs, one-third of the world’s population is within a four-hour flight. A UTC +4 time zone makes it easier to do business internationally too, while enabling you to tap into local opportunities too.
- Competitive tax regime
In the UAE, you can maximize your income with one of the most competitive corporate tax regimes in the world. Legal consultancies can benefit from zero personal income tax and, zero corporate tax on businesses earning an income less that AED 375,00 starting from 2023.
How to start a law firm in the UAE – step-by-step
Starting a law firm in the UAE isn’t difficult, but you will need to jump through a few hoops to kickstart the process. We’ve broken it down into three straightforward steps to give you an idea of what to expect.
Step 1: Submit your application
To operate your business legally in the UAE, you will need to apply for a license. As part of the application process, you’ll need to detail your business activity and provide your company name. Make sure this adheres to the UAE’s company name conventions. It shouldn’t be registered, offensive or blasphemous. Providing everything is in order, you can receive your license in as little as two hours.
Step 2: Sign up for e-channel services
The UAE now offers an e-channel service, which is a huge perk since this eliminates a lot of unnecessary paperwork. It also makes it easier to get hold of your entry permit. Once you’ve received this, you’ll be able to stay in the region for up to 60 days.
Step 3: Activate your status change
Once you’ve received your entry permit, you can activate your status change. You can either do this in-country or by exiting and re-entering the emirates. Then, you’ll need to undergo medical tests to acquire your Emirates ID. This card is a legal requirement for all business owners.
Documents required to get a legal consultancy license in the UAE
In order to apply for your legal consultancy license, the relevent authorities require a handful of documents. These include:
- Your completed application form
- A copy of your (or the proposed business owner’s) passport
- Two colour passport photos
You’ll need to have these documents in order regardless of whether you decide to make the application on your own or through a company formation company like SPC Free Zone.
Depending on the emirate, you may need to prove your qualifications to the relevent Legal Affiairs Department. This will usually include a copy of your professional license, a copy of your current practicing certificate and a letter of good standing.
Cost of setting up a legal consultancy in the UAE
In SPC Free Zone, you can set up a legal consultancy in the UAE for as little as AED 5,750. However, there are additional costs to factor in too. For instance, will you require office space for your legal consultancy? Will you require a higher visa quota? Are you looking for a multi-year license? All of these factors will bump up the overall price.
For a more accurate idea of how much it might cost to start a legal consultancy, get in touch with our business advisors who will be able to provide a bespoke tailored to your specific needs, free of charge.
How to grow your legal consultancy business in the UAE
It’s one thing understanding how to start a legal consultancy business in the UAE, but for real success you also need to learn how to grow your business. Tried and tested strategies might include:
Networking is important in any industry, but particularly so in law. It can help you increase your firm’s visibility, attract new clients and gain new business opportunities. The UAE is well set up for networking in this respect. Many networking events take place here every year, from focus groups and meet-ups to blockbuster trade shows, like Dubai Expo 2021 to Business Groups and Councils.
- Investing in Digital Marketing
It’s worth keeping in mind that 97% of people learn more about local businesses online than anywhere else. Build your online presence and make sure potential clients are impressed with what they see. That means becoming active on social media, publishing articles and blog posts for better SEO ranking and running PPC ads to target hyper-local businesses.
Why choose SPC Free Zone
SPC Free Zone offers fast and flexible business setup in the UAE, just 15 minutes from Dubai International Airport. With immigration services on-site, you can get your license issued in less than two hours. You can also choose from more than1,500 business activities, apply for 20 visas under one license, and apply for a dual-license option that offers both mainland and free zone on the same license. What’s more, you’ll get to maximize your income with zero paid-up share capital, 0% corporate and personal income tax and 100% foreign ownership.
Ready to start a law firm in the UAE? Get in touch with SPC Free Zone today.
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