Enforcement Of Foreign Judgments

Author:Ms Julie Murphy-O'Connor and Gearóid Carey
Profession:Matheson
 
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1. UNIFORMITY OF LAW AND REGULATIONS Ireland does not have a federal system. In Ireland the enforcement of EU judgments is governed by Regulation 44/2001 (the 'Brussels Regulation'). The Jurisdiction of Courts and Enforcement of Judgments Act 1998 implements the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters 1968 and the Lugano Convention Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters 1988. That Act, and those Conventions, are therefore relevant to enforcement of judgments from certain territories of EU Member States to which the Brussels Convention applies but which are outside the EU and to the enforcement of judgments from EFTA states. Enforcement of EU/EFTA judgments is common-place before the Irish courts and is quite straightforward. For the purpose of this assessment, we treat judgments from EU Member States and Contracting States to the Brussels and Lugano Conventions as the same. Enforcement of judgments from non-EU Member States and non-Contracting States to the Brussels and Lugano Conventions is governed by Common Law principles. The procedure and rules relating to enforcement of judgments of from such jurisdictions tend to be a rarity, as the procedure is laborious and various limitations and restrictions apply. Save where the contrary appears, this chapter deals with enforcement of judgments from non-EU Member States and non-Contracting States to the Brussels and Lugano Conventions. 2. JUDGMENTS 2.1. Definition Judgment may be defined as any decision or sentence of a court in legal proceedings. For the purposes of enforcement of EU judgments, the Brussels Regulation adopts the following definition, which is quite broad: 'judgment' means any judgment given by a court or tribunal of a Member State, whatever the judgment may be called, including a decree, order, decision or writ of execution, as well as the determination of costs or expenses by an officer of the court. Similarly broad definitions apply under the Brussels and Lugano Conventions. 2.2. Categories Money judgments are enforceable. Specific performance is not enforceable at Common Law. However, because of the breadth of the definition of judgment under the Brussels Regulation and the Brussels and Lugano Conventions, orders directing specific performance from relevant States are enforceable. Injunctions are not enforceable at Common Law. However, because of the breadth of the definition of...

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