On January 18, the European Commission published guidelines outlining the impact a no-deal Brexit will have on the recognition and enforcement of UK judgments in the remaining 27 EU countries (EU 27). The Commission states that where the judgment concerned requires exequatur, and the UK court has obtained exequatur before March 29 (or any extended exit date) but the judgment has not yet been enforced in an EU 27 country, then that judgment can still be enforced in the EU 27. In any other circumstances, EU rules will no longer apply to UK judgments in the EU 27 even where:
– the judgment was handed down before the exit date; or
– the enforcement proceedings were commenced before the exit date.
Instead, the Commission states that the domestic rules of each EU member state will apply to the enforcement of any such UK judgment. This is as we foreshadowed in our earlier client alert. Also, it should be noted that, on December 28, 2018, the UK deposited its instrument of accession to the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements 2005. In the event of no deal, the UK will be a party to the Hague Convention (again, see our earlier client alert), and it is intended that the UK will be a party to the Hague Convention from April 1.