x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Deceased Emiratis in Sharjah will have outstanding loans paid

Ruler of Sharjah issues decree to ease financial burden on families.

Emiratis living in Sharjah who die with outstanding loans will have their debts and funeral costs paid off following a decree by Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, the emirate's Ruler.

Sheikh Al Qasimi has ordered Sharjah's department of suburbs and villages affairs to handle any financial issues to ease the burden on Emirati families.

Khamees bin Salem Al Suwaidi, the head of the department, said it will be responsible for "organising all aspects of the funerals" and "covering all related expenses".

"This kind of humanitarian initiative is never unexpected of the Ruler of Sharjah," he noted.

Outstanding loans will be settled by the department of coordination and legal management at the Ruler's Court in collaboration with charities and Sharjah's Sharia Court.

The settlement of loans applies to deceased Emiratis whose remaining assets or surviving family cannot cover the outstanding amount, Mr Al Suwaidi noted.

"Our department is going to hold an urgent meeting with charities that have expressed their readiness in order to immediately start putting the decision into action," he added.

Emiratis living in Sharjah were grateful for the decision, saying it would go a long way to helping ease the burden of relatives who are often left struggling to repay the debts left behind by their deceased relatives.

"The Ruler is really caring and likes us," said Issam Mohammed. "It is so painful to lose a loved one and then have to go through the pains of paying their debts.

"Sometimes the deceased was the main breadwinner and only his income could afford to pay his debts."

Fatema Abdul Rahim, another Emirati resident, said repaying the debts of a deceased relative was one of the main causes of stress to orphaned children.

"Most of them cannot afford to repay the debt and the banks would take some of the family's assets that would have helped the orphans in day to day life in the absence of their deceased parent."