Out now: RabelsZ 1/2021

Issue 1/2021 of RabelsZ is now available online! It contains the following articles:


Reinhard Zimmermann (Hamburg): Zwingender Angehörigenschutz im Erbrecht ­- Entwicklungslinien jenseits der westeuropäischen Kodifikationen (Mandatory Family Protection in the Law of Succession), RabelsZ 85 (2021) 1–75 – DOI: 10.1628/rabelsz-2020-0092

Opinion of AG Campos Sánchez-Bordona in the case CNP, C-913/19: Brussels I bis Regulation and notion of “branch, agency or other establishment” in the insurance context

This Thursday, Advocate General Campos Sánchez-Bordona presented his Opinion in the case CNP, C-913/19. In this case, a Polish court asks the Court of Justice to interpret the special jurisdictional rules in matters relating to insurance contained in Section 3 of Chapter II of the Brussels I bis Regulation, in conjunction with Article 7(2) and (5) of that Regulation. Read more

European Private International Law

Geert van Calster has just published the third edition of the book titled “European Private International Law: Commercial Litigation in the EU” with Hart.

European Private International Law

The blurb reads as follows:

This classic textbook provides a thorough overview of European private international law. It is essential reading for private international law students who need to study the European perspective in order to fully get to grips the subject.
Opening with foundational questions, it clearly explains the subject’s central tenets: the Brussels I, Rome I and Rome II Regulations (jurisdiction, applicable law for contracts and tort). Additional chapters explore the Succession Regulation, private international law and insolvency, freedom of establishment, and the impact of PIL on corporate social responsibility. The new edition includes a new chapter on the Hague instruments and an opening discussion on the impact of Brexit.
Drawing on the author’s rich experience, the new edition retains the book’s hallmarks of insight and clarity of expression ensuring it maintains its position as the leading textbook in the field.

Third Issue of 2020’s Journal of Private International Law

The third issue of the Journal of Private International Law for 2020 features the following articles:

M Teo, “Public law adjudication, international uniformity and the foreign act of state doctrine”

Should courts, when applying foreign law, assess the validity or legality of foreign legislative or executive acts therein? The foreign act of state doctrine answers that question in the negative, but is often criticised as lacking a sound theoretical basis. This article argues, however, that the doctrine remains defensible if reconceptualised as a rule of private international law, which furthers the modest goal of international uniformity within the choice-of-law process. Assessing the validity or legality of foreign legislative and executive acts necessarily requires courts to address questions of foreign public law. Given the fact-specific and flexible nature of public law adjudication, courts cannot answer these questions, and thus cannot carry out such assessments, in a manner that loyally applies foreign law. The doctrine, then, makes the best of a bad situation, by sidestepping that problem with a clear rule of refusal which, if consistently applied, furthers international uniformity.

Book published: The Vienna Convention in America

Iacyr de Aguilar Vieira, Gustavo Cerqueira (Eds.), The Vienna Convention in America. 40th anniversary of the United Nation Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods / La Convention de Vienne en Amérique. 40eanniversaire de la Convention des Nations Unies sur les contrats de vente internationale des marchandisesParis : Société de législation comparée, 2020, 408 p. (available in hard copy and e-book)

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Vienna Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, the Latin American section of the Société de législation comparée has published this book to present the Convention’s current state of application in different American countries, as well as to evaluate its influence on domestic sales laws.

ERA Online Seminar: Digital Technology in Family Matters

On 27 January 2021 ERA (Academy of European Law) will host an online seminar to discuss practical implications of using digital technology in family law cases that often involve vulnerable parties and will therefore need special attention within the digitalisation of justice.

Among the key topics addressed in this event are:

  • Legal Tech in family law – and how it affects the lawyer’s work
  • Digitalisation of family courts, paperless systems and remote hearings
  • Online divorce and ODR
  • e-codex and the digitalisation of justice systems
  • Artificial intelligence in family matters
  • Experiences abroad

Additional information about this event is available here.

The Law Applicable to Cross-border Contracts involving Weaker Parties in EU Private International Law

Maria Campo Comba just published a book titled: “The Law Applicable to Cross-border Contracts involving Weaker Parties in EU Private International Law” with Springer.  The abstract reads as follows:

This book provides answers to the following questions: how do traditional principles of private international law relate to the requirements of the internal market for the realisation of the EU’s objectives regarding the protection of weaker parties such as consumers and employees? When and how should private international law ensure the applicability of EU directives concerning the protection of weaker parties? Are the EU’s current private international law, rules on conflict of laws, and private international law approach sufficient to ensure the realisation of its objectives regarding weaker contracting parties, or is a different approach to private international law called for? The book concludes with several proposed amendments, mainly regarding the Rome I Regulation on the law applicable to contractual obligations, as well as suggestions on the EU’s current approach to private international law. 

Call for papers – Minor’s right to information in European civil actions: Improving children’s right to information in cross-border civil cases

The right of children to receive adequate information in civil proceedings involving them represents a cornerstone of child participation, as well as a fundamental right of the child. The contact of children with the judicial system represents one of the most delicate situations where the child’s best interests and wellbeing should be of special attention. In particular, the child should receive information before, during and after the judicial proceedings, in order to have a better understanding of the situation and to be prepared either for his or her audition by the judicial authority, or for the final decision that will be taken. This aspect – as an important component of the child’s fundamental rights – should acquire (and is acquiring) importance also within the European Union, more and more oriented towards the creation of a child-friendly justice. It is a current reality that the implementation of the fundamental rights of the child influences the correct application of the EU instruments in the field of judicial cooperation in civil matters.

ABLI’s “Where in Asia” series

Written by Catherine Shen, Project Manager, Asian Business Law Institute


  1. The ConflictofLaws.net previously published a short update on the Asian Principles for the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments (Adeline Chong ed, Asian Business Law Institute, 2020) which was released in September 2020.
  2. Starting in November 2020, ABLI has been following up that publication with a series of concise handbooks written in no-frills languages called “Where in Asia” to address practical questions such as where in Asia judgments from a particular jurisdiction are entitled to be, have been and cannot be, recognised and enforced in other jurisdictions. The jurisdictions considered are Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Lao, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam, which corresponds to those discussed in the two flagship ABLI publications on judgments recognition and enforcement: Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Asia (Adeline Chong ed, Asian Business Law Institute, 2017) and the Asian Principles.

Virtual Workshop (in English!) on 13 January 2020: AG Maciej Szpunar on Extraterritoriality

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Since the summer, the Hamburg Max Planck Institute has hosted monthly virtual workshops on current research in private international law. That series, so far held in German, has proven very successful, with sometimes more than 1oo participants.

Starting in January, the format will be expanded. In order to broaden the scope of potential participants, the series will alternate between English and German presentations. The first English language speaker promises to be a highlight: Attorney-General Maciej Szpunar, author of the opinions in the landmark cases Google v CNIL (C-507/17) and Glawischnig-Pieschzek v Facebook Ireland Limited (C-18/18), as well as numerous other conflict-of-laws cases, most recently X v Kuoni (C-578/19). Szpunar will speak about questions of (extra-)territoriality, a topic of much interest for private international lawyers and EU lawyers since long ago, and of special interest for UK lawyers post-Brexit.