Prior to the UK’s departure from the EU, the enforcement of French judgments in England and Wales was exclusively governed by the so-called ‘European Regime’ for claims instituted after January 2015. Despite the UK’s exit from the EU in January 2020, the European Regime remains relevant today for parties that seek to enforce judgments obtained in proceedings issued prior to the UK-EU transition period ending on 31 December 2020.
For proceedings instituted after 1 January 2021, there are two alternative methods of enforcement. Enforcement under these alternative methods is more technical than under the European Regime. As such, it is important that English legal advice is sought at the earliest opportunity. Failure to adopt the correct approach can result in serious consequences in both France and England.
Under one method, a failure to take steps in the French proceedings can result in the judgment being enforceable in England whereas, under another method, a failure to take steps in the foreign proceedings can result in the judgment being unenforceable.
This article examines the requirements and procedure governing enforcement of French judgments in England and Wales after 10 January 2015. Judgments obtained in France prior to 10 January 2015 are outside the scope of this article as these cases are now increasingly rare and are governed by different rules.
You can read the article here