Highlighting Some Of Saudi Arabia’s Legal Reforms – OpEd


By Dimah Talal Alsharif*

Over recent years, the Saudi legal system has been constantly evolving by combining Islamic law with best international practices.

An example of the change and development taking place is the introduction and amendment of laws and regulations to provide effective and efficient results and solutions.

In order to enhance and improve law practices, the Kingdom also recently opened its doors to foreign law firms. The move aims to provide more efficient services to individuals and institutions, improve the business and investment environment in the country, and develop and enhance the skills of legal practitioners.

One of the most important objectives of the establishment of foreign law firms is that the number of Saudis practicing legal work at any foreign law office must not be less than the Saudization percentage set for such businesses and professional companies.

The Kingdom also launched a new licensing system to properly monitor the influencer industry on social media to prevent violations of national laws and values.

Citizens and residents are also increasingly being made more aware of their legal rights.

The personal status law that came into effect in June, as part of a series of legal reforms, seeks to raise systems efficiency, boosting transparency, improving life quality, and protecting human rights. It addresses cases related to marriage, divorce, custody, child support, wills, and inheritance.

A number of services have also been introduced to help businesses perform judicial services with ease or to report violations.

Saudi Arabia also allowed women to study and major in law similar to their male counterparts at the beginning of 2004.

Due to the landmark decision, female law practitioners are now teaching law, and working in legal roles often at senior positions in government agencies, ministries, military institutions, and local and international commercial companies.

Universities are encouraging more women to enroll in law to help satisfy a need for more legal practitioners in business and economic sectors.

As Saudi National Day approaches, I feel proud to highlight some of the legal developments that have been undertaken by Saudi Arabia.

• Dimah Talal Alsharif is a Saudi legal consultant, head of the health law department at the law firm of Majed Garoub and a member of the International Association of Lawyers. Twitter: @dimah_alsharif

Arab News

Arab News is Saudi Arabia's first English-language newspaper. It was founded in 1975 by Hisham and Mohammed Ali Hafiz. Today, it is one of 29 publications produced by Saudi Research & Publishing Company (SRPC), a subsidiary of Saudi Research & Marketing Group (SRMG).

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