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Chronicle of Private International Law Applied to Business

Author: Yasmine LAHLOU & Marina MATOUSEKOVA

Type: Article : News

ref: 42007542-556

N0:4 of 2007

Pages: 542-556

The French Supreme Court had to rule on conflicts of laws in disputes related to transport of goods, debts’ assignment, copyright infringement, bank liability and tort liability. It also had to rule on the court’s duty in applying foreign laws and on the mandatory nature of the French law on Subcontracts. In the field of conflicts of jurisdictions, the Court had to rule on disputes related to an occupation allowance due by a surviving spouse and to the validity of a jurisdiction clause invoked by a third party expert designated in the contract. The Italian Supreme Court refused to recognize a foreign judgment granting punitive damages by reason of its contrariety with international public policy. The French Supreme Court gave precisions as to the judge competent and as to the status of late payment interests in the framework of enforcement proceedings. The High Court finally made an important reversal of precedent with regard to its prior Munzer case law in that it does no longer require, as a condition for recognition and enforcement of foreign decisions, that French courts apply the law designated by French conflicts of laws rule.

In community law, the French Supreme Court ruled on the application of EC Regulation 1346/2000 to the French new safeguard procedure and on the application of EC Regulation 44/2001 to a company exercising powers of public authority through its monopoly in the field of bets on horse races. The Court also ruled, on the ground of Article 5.1 of the Regulation, on court’s jurisdiction in the field of exclusive trading agreements, as well as on the condition of application of Article 13-3 of the Brussels Convention to loans concluded with consumers and on the conditions of validity of jurisdiction clauses pursuant to Article 23 of the Regulation. The High Court finally stated that in order to determine, in accordance with Article 27-1 of the Regulation, whether a court has been seized in a lis pendens case, it must be referred to the date of reception of the document instituting the proceedings by the receiving agency as defined by EC Regulation 1348/2000.