INTERNATIONAL TREATY OR POLITE RECIPROCITY. Potential Grounds for Recognition of Foreign Court Judgments in Russia

15.05.2014, Dmitri A. Lubomudrov
INTERNATIONAL TREATY OR POLITE RECIPROCITY. Potential Grounds for Recognition of Foreign Court Judgments in Russia
The New Advocates Gazette, No. 22 (159), 2013 has posted a very interesting and informative article “Limits of the Principle of Sovereignty” by Ruth A. van der Pol, Judge of the Court of Appeals of the Netherlands, in which he discusses the issues relating to enforcement in the Netherlands of judgments rendered by Russian courts in civil matters.

Courts in the Netherlands have developed a procedure which the author of the article calls the “masked grant of an enforcement order”, which generally allows recognition of foreign court judgments (including Russian ones) in civil matters even in the absence of a relevant international treaty. The Code of Civil Procedure of the Netherlands (to be more accurate – the case law on its application) allows courts of the Netherlands to actually enforce a Russian court’s judgment by conducting retrial and rendering a judgment that matches the Russian court’s one. However, no repeated resolution of the case on the merits takes place in reality and the retrial is limited to the verification of compliance with certain minimal, mostly formal requirements. In this context one may consider whether judgments of Dutch courts can be enforceable in Russia.