The Recognition and Enforcement of Wills and Successions in the European Union - Brussels Ill?

Author:Cliodhna Murphy
Position:Senior Sophister (Law and French), Trinity College Dublin
Pages:184-196
THE
RECOGNITION
AND
ENFORCEMENT
OF
WILLS
AND
SUCCESSIONS
IN
THE
EUROPEAN
UNION -
BRUSSELS
III?
CLIODHNA
MURPHY*
The
Brussels Convention
of
1968
(hereinafter
"the
1968
Convention")'
was
designed to
improve co-operation
between
EC
countries
in
relation
to
the
recognition and enforcement
of
judgments
in
civil
matters generally.
It
is
the
basic
instrument
in this
area
and
it
covers
all
areas
of
civil
and
commercial law
except for those which
are
expressly excluded
from its
scope:
the
status
or legal
capacity
of
natural
persons,
rights
in
property
arising out
of
a
matrimonial
relationship,
wills
and
succession,
bankruptcy,
social
security
and
arbitration.
The
"Brussels
II"
Regulation
of
20012
built
on
the
groundwork
laid
by
the
Convention
by
establishing
rules
on
the
mutual
recognition
and
enforcement
of
judgments
in
matrimonial
matters
and
in
matters
of
parental responsibility. Succession matters were
specifically excluded
from
the
scope
of
Brussels
II.
It
is
submitted that
the
next
step
in
the
process started
by
the
1968
Convention
should
be
the
adoption
of
an
instrument,
along
the
lines
of
Brussels
II,
on
the
mutual
recognition
of
wills
and
successions. According
to
the
Vienna
Action
Plan
(2001),
the
aim
of
judicial
co-operation
in
civil
matters
is:
[T]o
make
life
easier
for
European
citizens
by
improving
and
simplifying
rules
on
co-operation
...
and
by
eliminating
obstacles
to
the
good
functioning
of
civil
proceedings
in
a
European
judicial
area.
3
Senior
Sophister
(Law
and
French), Trinity College Dublin.
This
Convention
is
currently
being
converted into
a
binding regulation.
2 Council
Regulation
(EC)
No
1347/2000
of
29 May
2000
on
jurisdiction
and
enforcement
of
judgments
in
matrimonial
matters
of
parental
responsibility
for
children
of
both spouses,
OJ
L160,
30
June 2000.
3 Action Plan
of
the
Council and
the
Commission
on how
best
to
implement
the
provisions
of
the
Treaty
of
Amsterdam
on
an
area
of
freedom,
security
and
justice,
text adopted
by
the
Justice
and
Home Affairs Council
of
3
December
1998.
OJ
C019,
23
January
1999,
at
10.
The
Plan
also says
that
law-abiding
citizens
have
a
right
to
look
to
the
Union
to
simplify
and
©
2004
Cliodhna
Murphy
and Dublin
University
Law
Society

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