Brussels I Revised – Accelerating Enforcement

In January 2015, the new regulation of the European Council dating from 12 December 2012 regarding court jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of rulings in civil and commercial matters will come into force, thereby replacing the Brussels I regulation (EC) No. 44/2001.

One of the most important changes is the abolition of the exequatur procedure, which allows enforcing judgments of the courts of member states directly, i.e. without having to obtain a declaration of enforceability in the state of enforcement as is currently the case. Enforcement will therefore become significantly easier for creditors, as they can appeal to the enforcement bodies in the state of enforcement directly and can initiate enforcement quickly. While the exequatur procedure did not take particularly long in Germany (in most cases, only a few weeks), it could take several months in other member states, which in turn could have major consequences with regard to the enforcement action (first come first served).

The facilitation covers "rulings", which in principle includes provisional measures such as interim measures. Enforcement therefore takes place based directly on the foreign title. The competent law enforcement authorities can only request a translation of the ruling from the petitioner if they cannot continue the procedure without it. The judgment debtor can apply for a rejection of the enforcement if it infringes public policy (ordre public) of the state of execution or if his right to be heard has been violated.

The new regulation will facilitate and accelerate the enforcement of rulings of other EU courts, which can present a major advantage in the "race among the creditors".

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