Middle East Case Study:
Succession, Real Estate and Disputes

This course examines the topical subject of Middle Eastern investment in the UK either directly by individuals and families or through corporate structures.

Key learning points:

An overview of the key taxes and practical issues that need to be considered when a client is investing in the UK
  • Why is UK real estate an attractive investment to Middle Eastern investors
  • Structuring of real estate investment from a legal and corporate perspective and the influence of Sharia Llaw
  • Structuring property acquisition finance in compliance with Sharia law
  • Top tips for buyers and sellers before embarking on UK investment including tax efficeint structures
  • What can go wrong on residential purchases at each stage - funding, structuring and ongoing taxation issues 
  • Multiple ownership and IHT planning, CGT issues and GWOB
  • Contingency planning and insurance
  • The importance of undertaking an asset exposure audit and identifying where family wealth may be eroded
  • Planning for potential disputes with an awareness of both Shariah law and UK law

Meet the speakers

Ayda Habboush
Corporate Partner, Trowers & Hamlins
Ayda has almost 15 years' experience as a corporate solicitor and has been involved in a broad range of work, including mergers and acquisitions (both UK and international), with a particular focus on inward investment (from the MENA and ASEAN regions) in the real estate and hotels and leisure sectors, advising both owners and operators.

Ayda specialises on advising clients on the acquisition of commercial real estate including offices, hotels, serviced apartments and student accommodation, as well as advising clients on the structuring of cross-border investments. She also has particular interest in the corporate structuring of Shari'ah compliant acquisitions of shares and assets and establishing Shariah compliant offshore funds. Ayda also regularly provides general corporate advice regarding joint ventures, group reorganisations and corporate insolvency.

Ayda is head of Trowers' Hotel & Leisure Group and a member of the Islamic Finance team. Ayda is also a member of the Arab Bankers Association and Arab British Chamber of Commerce. She is fluent in Arabic and French.
Jonathan Kropman
Head of Private Client, Trowers & Hamlins

Jonathan Kropman has led legal teams for over 25 years. Heading the Private Wealth practice across the firm's UK and International offices, his work focuses on advising National and International ultra-high net worth individuals and families.

Jonathan advises on, asset holding structures; succession planning; residence and domicile; protection of family assets; family offices, shareholder and family agreements and tax enquiries and disputes with HMRC.

He works extensively with the firm's long established Private Wealth team in the Middle East.

Acting as a trustee of client trusts and having previously chaired a national neurological science charity, Jonathan's experience also leads him to advising on trustee issues for trust companies, private banks and others in the private wealth management sector.
Charise Crawford
Litigation Partner, Trowers & Hamlins
Charisse is a partner in the Dispute Resolution and Litigation team at Trowers & Hamlins specialising in asset protection.