Some Legal Issues Film Permit Can Help You With When Filming a Commercial Video in the UAE!

Filming a documentary, commercial video, or a full movie can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but it is essential to understand the legal considerations that come with filming in different countries. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a popular destination for filming due to its stunning scenery and diverse culture. Still, there are potential legal issues that documentary filmmakers should be aware of.

Here at Film Permit, we’ve helped plenty of partners shoot their movies in the UAE. And legal issues are why you’d want to partner up with a professional service that can deliver permits and stand behind all legalities, so you don’t have to worry!

In this article, we will explore the potential legal issues that need to be considered when filming a commercial video in the UAE.

Filming in Dubai

Filming Permits

Production companies must acquire a filming permit to carry out any filming activities in the country. The permit specifies the permissible locations for filming. In the case of filming within private premises such as residential properties, written permission from the property owner is also necessary.

If the filming involves aerial shots in the documentary, an additional filming permit is required. Depending on the location, the production company may need other approvals, such as from the Ministry of Interior.

The Dubai Film and TV Commission is responsible for issuing filming permits in Dubai. They will also manage the coordination of all necessary approvals required for filming at the selected location(s) in the Emirate. In other Emirates, such as Abu Dhabi, the Media Zone Authority will coordinate applications for filming permits.

It is recommended to plan as the permit issuance process can take 3-4 weeks.

How we can help?

It’s great to have a partner when it comes to obtaining permits and approvals! The film permit agency plays a crucial role in facilitating the process of obtaining a filming permit in the UAE. They assist production companies in securing the necessary permits and approvals required for filming in the country, ensuring compliance with local laws and regulations!

By working with a film permit agency, you can save time and effort and ensure that you have all the necessary permits and approvals in place before commencing filming activities in the UAE.

Script Clearance

The National Media Council (NMC) is the UAE Federal government department responsible for pre-approving all scripts, treatments, storyboards, and synopses before any filming can take place in the UAE. As part of the filming permit application, all scene shots and locations must be included in the script, which must be in its final form before submission, as further revisions require NMC approval.

The NMC will thoroughly review the script to ensure compliance with local laws and regulations, particularly concerning cultural, social, and religious sensitivities. To avoid any delays in approval, it is advised that potential issues be discussed with a legal advisor before submitting the script to the NMC.

In addition, the relevant authority responsible for filming permit applications in each Emirate can coordinate script approval with the NMC. However, script approval may take up to three weeks, so it is crucial to plan to avoid any unnecessary delays.

How We can help?

We at UAE Film Permit, can assist with the above requirements by providing guidance and support throughout the script approval process. We work closely with the production team to ensure that all necessary information is included in the script and that it meets the criteria set by the National Media Council.

The agency also coordinates with the relevant authorities responsible for filming permit applications in each Emirate to streamline the approval process. We can also provide legal advice on potential issues that may arise during the script approval process, helping to prevent any setbacks or rejections.

Privacy Issues

The UAE places a strong emphasis on safeguarding individuals’ rights to privacy and family life. It is imperative to exercise caution when including individuals in a documentary or disclosing details about their private life without their informed consent.

To obtain informed consent from a contributor, it is essential to provide them with adequate information regarding their participation, including the subject matter, nature, format, and intended audience of the documentary.

To ensure compliance, written consent should be obtained from all individuals who are featured in the documentary. In the case of minors, their parents or guardians must provide informed consent.

How do we help?

We can help you ensure compliance with UAE laws and regulations regarding privacy and consent by providing guidance and support in obtaining informed consent from featured individuals. We also make sure that everyone has been provided with adequate information about their participation and given their informed consent in writing. The agency can also provide a standard form of consent to simplify the process.

film permit agency can advise on best practices for obtaining consent from minors and their guardians, as well as provide legal support if any legal issues arise related to privacy or consent.


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