When and Where?
Launched earlier this year, the ChequeScore is an innovative tool of Al Etihad Credit Bureau (AECB), aimed at complementing the initiatives of the UAE Government to decriminalize bounced cheques. As of April 20 2022, the ChequeScore can be accessed on the website of AECB, its features being fully functional. ChequeScore has been made available in various app stores from February this year.
Using an algorithm based forecast, the ChequeScore determines the probability that a cheque is rejected in the next 9 (nine) months from the date an inquiry was made by an applicant. Simply put, it provides an additional guarantee on the solvability of a payee, the algorithm extracting certain data from the AECB in order to provide such output.
Provided that the algorithms calculate the possibility that a cheque is dishonored for liquidity related reasons in the payee’s account, we note that it may not cover all reasons for which a cheque can be rejected (for example, improper signatures, torn cheques etc.). For this, it is important for the users of such app to evaluate the situations they face on contingency basis and given the requisite attention to each transaction they may enter into.
The rationale behind this initiative is to benchmark, develop and implement a wider process of evidence-based decision making for both corporate entities and individuals. With this, payments by cheques can be easier quantified, and the potential legal overheads and costs associated with cheques being dishonored is diminished.
The business community (and not only) can benefit from this initiative in various ways:
- Streamline the payment methods they use in their contracts with partners;
- Securitize their payments via cheques, or, in the alternative, by using various other forms of payment and collaterals;
- Better and more simple drafting of their contracts and of the dispute resolution clauses included therein;
- Easier budgeting;
- Easier calculation of time and cost implied by eventual litigation;
- Chances of success and recovery in potential litigation.
In the meantime, AECB has integrated their platforms with various other governmental institutions in the country, the latest of such initiatives being integration with Dubai Courts platforms. In such case, payments made via or originating from Dubai Courts will also appear in the AECB databases. Similar integrations have been made with certain telecom and utilities providers in the country as well.
Further, the aim of these initiatives is to provide larger uniformity for the business community and not only, a better possibility to prevent frauds, delays and adverse variables to income generators and to overall promote a business culture related to exchange of information and informed decision making.
Last but not least, it is a tool designated for implementing accountability within the jurisdiction. Whereas ChequeScore is newly implemented, the next period will test its efficiency in responding to these generational aims.
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