Shabnam Karim

Norton Rose Fulbright (Middle East) LLP

United Arab Emirates
T:+971 4 369 6317
United Arab Emirates
T:+971 4 369 6317
Shabnam Karim

Shabnam Karim


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Shabnam Karim is a dispute resolution lawyer in Dubai who specializes in liability and insurance disputes, including professional and management liability, cybersecurity risks and insurance policy coverage disputes across the Middle East and India.

Shabnam has practised in the Middle East for almost six years and in this time has worked on the most complex and high-profile matters across the region.

Her practice focuses specifically on professional negligence litigation (including medical malpractice disputes), D & O/ management liability, cybersecurity response, cyber liability disputes and insurance policy coverage advice and litigation.

Shabnam is one of the few specialists in the Middle East in the areas of healthcare malpractice, D&O and cyber liability.

Prior to joining us, Shabnam worked at another law firm in the UK and in Dubai for 10 years. Shabnam has undertaken secondments to Zurich Insurance in London and AIG in Dubai within their professional and financial lines claims teams.

Shabnam is described by clients as "persistent and solution-driven" and "Shabnam is a leading expert when it comes to insurance/reinsurance liability and coverage matters in the region".

Professional experience

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  • Solicitor, qualified in England and Wales (15.09.2008)

Professional negligence matters

  • Defending a global consulting firm in the DIFC courts in a US$500m value claim connected with a regulatory claim for IPO misrepresentation in Saudi Arabia.
  • Acting for a compliance consultancy, following DFSA enforcement action against a regulated entity.
  • Advising Indian insurers and international reinsurers following multiple investor claims against an Indian private equity firm concerning a fund administered in Mauritius.
  • Leading a book of business focused on healthcare institution and professionals' medical malpractice and defending over 100 claims across the Middle East, from attendance before healthcare regulators to all stages of litigation, as well as out-of-court resolution.
  • Acting in multiple cases (litigated and non-litigated) defending medium-sized and international law firms in professional negligence claims.

D&O/management liability

  • Successfully defending a senior manager of a regulated financial institution subject to a high-profile DFSA enforcement action, including responding to a section 80 Notice and preparation for attendance at a compulsory interview.
  • Acting for a management individual of a DFSA-regulated insurance business defending a DFSA enforcement action.
  • Acting for the international reinsurance market as coverage and monitoring counsel, following multiple claims and high-profile investigations in multiple jurisdictions against a private equity firm in Dubai.
  • Advising on a high-profile regulatory investigation and consequent shareholder litigation in Saudi Arabia, following a misstatement of accounts and criminal convictions for insider trading and market manipulation.


  • Acting for a UAE investment firm following a cyber incident, leading to the loss of millions of dollars, including co-ordinating multi-jurisdictional proceedings in the UK and Europe, progressing UAE criminal complaints, mitigating IT forensic and international asset tracing investigations and advising the client on the liability of third parties.
  • Advising on cyber insurance policy wordings and localizing them for use in the UAE.
  • Shabnam is frequently quoted in UAE newspapers and publications on her topics of specialism, including cybersecurity risks and medical malpractice liability.
  • Speaker at a seminar on Cyber Risks and Security with Millenium Brokers in Dubai (November 2016).
  • Speaker at the 2018 Dubai World Insurance Congress on cyber risks and legislation.
  • Speaker at a 2018 onshore energy conference in Dubai on "Cyber: The energy sector's next big challenge".
  • Speaker at various market events on medical malpractice liability in the Middle East and risk malpractice.
  • English
  • Hindi
  • Italian