Private International Law and the outbreak of Covid-19: Some initial thoughts and lessons to face in daily life

Written by Inez Lopes (Universidade de Brasília) and Fabrício Polido (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)

 

Following the successful repercussion of the Webinar PIL & Covid-19: Mobility of Persons, Commerce and Challenges in the Global Order, which took place between 11 and 22nd May 2020, the Scientific Committee headed by Prof. Dr Inez Lopes (Universidade de Brasília), Prof. Dr Valesca R. Moschen (Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo), Prof. Dr Fabricio B. Pasquot Polido (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais), Prof. Dr Thiago Paluma (Universidade Federal de Uberlandia) and Prof. Dr Renata Gaspar (Universidade Federal de Uberlandia) is pleased to announce that the Webinar´s videos are already available online (links below). The committee thanks all those professors, staff and students who enthusiastically joined the initiative. A special thank is also given to the University of Minas Gerais and the Brazilian Centre for Transnational and Comparative Studies for the online transmissions. The sessions were attainable to both participants and the audience.

New EU conflict of laws rule for minimum wages in road transport on the way? – Background, state of affairs and implications of the 2017 EC proposal that is (still!) under negotiation

By Fieke van Overbeeke, Legal Counsel at the International Institute for International and Foreign Law – the Netherlands and research fellow at the University of Antwerp – Belgium.

On 31 May 2017 the European Commission launched a proposal to adopt a special conflict-of-laws rule that determines (i.a.) which minimum wages apply to the highly mobile cross-border working activities of lorry drivers (COM 2017, 278). After more than three years of heavy debate, this proposal was profoundly modified and the Council and the European Parliament still do not find each other, leaving many aspects to be still worked out (see also the Legislative Train on the European Parliament’s website). The purpose of this piece is to give an overview of the background of this proposal, the current state of affairs and the possible influence of a special conflicts-of-law rule on the sector from a conflict-of-laws perspective.

A few thoughts on the Guide to Good Practice on the grave-risk exception (Art. 13(1)(b)) under the Child Abduction Convention, through the lens of human rights (Part I)

Written by Mayela Celis – The comments below are based on the author’s doctoral thesis entitled “The Child Abduction Convention – four decades of evolutive interpretation” at UNED

As mentioned in a previous post, after many years in the making, the Guide to Good Practice on the grave-risk exception (Article 13(1)(b)) under the Child Abduction Convention (grave-risk exception Guide or Guide) has been published. Please refer to our previous posts here and here. This Guide to Good Practice deals with a very controversial topic indeed. The finalisation and approval of this Guide is without a doubt a milestone and thus, this Guide will be of great benefit to users.

Application of the Brussels I bis Regulation ratione materiae, interim relief measures and immunities: Opinion of AG Saugmandsgaard Øe in the case Supreme Site and Others, C-186/19

Written by María Barral Martínez, a former trainee at the European Court of Justice (Chambers of AG Campos Sánchez-Bordona) and an alumna of the University of Amsterdam and the University of Santiago de Compostela

The Hoge Raad Neederlanden (The Dutch Supreme Court), the referring court in the case Supreme Site Service and Others, C-186/19, harbours doubts regarding the international jurisdiction of Dutch courts under the Brussels I bis Regulation, in respect to a request to lift an interim garnishee order. An insight on the background of the case can be found here and here, while the implications of that background for admissibility of request for a preliminary ruling are addressed in section 1 of the present text.

Enforcing Outbound Forum Selection Clauses in U.S. State Court

Written by John Coyle, the Reef C. Ivey II Distinguished Professor of Law, Associate Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina School of Law, and Katherine C. Richardson, Law Clerk, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 2020-21 Term

 

European legal scholars have long bemoaned the difficulty in identifying “black letter rules” when it comes to U.S. private international law.  One area where this law is famously opaque relates to state enforcement of “outbound” forum selection clauses.  Outbound clauses—which are known as derogation clauses in the rest of the world—state that a dispute must be heard by a court other than the one where the suit was brought.  State courts in the United States generally refused to enforce these provisions prior to 1972.  After the U.S. Supreme Court rendered its seminal decision in The Bremen, however, attitudes began to change.  Today, it is generally acknowledged that state courts are far more likely to enforce outbound forum selection clauses than they were fifty years ago.  To date, however, nobody has attempted to determine empirically the extent to which state court practice has shifted since the early 1970s.  Our new paper seeks to accomplish this goal.

Equality of the parties in investment arbitration – public international law aspects

Written by Silja Vöneky, University of Freiburg

Note: This blogpost is part of a series on „Corporate social responsibility and international law“ that presents the main findings of the contributions published in August Reinisch, Stephan Hobe, Eva-Maria Kieninger & Anne Peters (eds), Unternehmensverantwortung und Internationales Recht, C.F. Müller, 2020.

I. Introduction

1. The question of the status of transnational corporations in investment arbitration is of central importance for the division of spheres of responsibility, for the pursuit and enforcement of values, and thus for the bases of legitimation of the international legal order today.

Equality of the parties in investment arbitration – private international law aspects

Written by Stefan Huber, University of Tübingen

Note: This blogpost is part of a series on „Corporate social responsibility and international law“ that presents the main findings of the contributions published in August Reinisch, Stephan Hobe, Eva-Maria Kieninger & Anne Peters (eds), Unternehmensverantwortung und Internationales Recht, C.F. Müller, 2020.

1. In investor-state arbitration, one has to distinguish between arbitral proceedings which are initiated on the basis of a contract concluded between the investor and the host state, on the one hand, and arbitral proceedings which are initiated on the basis of a bilateral investment treaty, on the other hand. In the latter case, there is no arbitration agreement in the traditional sense. This entails a unilateral right of the investor to initiate arbitral proceedings. Granting the host state the right to bring a counterclaim might compensate this asymmetry up to a certain degree.

Corona and Private International Law: A Regularly Updated Repository of Writings, Cases and Developments

by Ralf Michaels and Jakob Olbing

Note: This repository will stay permanent at www.conflictoflaws.net/corona.
Please send additions to olbing@mpipriv.de

Updated: August 13, 2020

The coronavirus has created a global crisis that affects all aspects of life everywhere. Not surprisingly, that means that the law is affected as well. And indeed, we have seen a high volume of legislation and legal regulations, of court decisions, and of scholarly debates. In some US schools there are courses on the legal aspects of corona. Some disciplines are organizing symposia or special journal issues to discuss the impact of the pandemic on the respective discipline.

Supreme Court of California (ROCKEFELLER TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENTS (ASIA) v. CHANGZHOU SINOTYPE TECHNOLOGY CO., LTD). A European reading of the ruling

A bit more than a month ago, the Supreme Court of California rendered its decision on a case concerning the (non-)application of the 1965 Hague Service Convention. The case has been thoroughly reported and commented before and after  the ruling of the Supreme Court. I will refrain from giving the full picture of the facts; I will focus on the central question of the dispute.

THE FACTS

The parties are U.S. and Chinese business entities. They entered into a contract wherein they agreed to submit to the jurisdiction of California courts and to resolve disputes between them through California arbitration. They also agreed to provide notice and “service of process” to each other through Federal Express or similar courier. The exact wording of the clause in the MOU reads as follows:

Public international law requirements for the effective enforcement of human rights

Written by Peter Hilpold, University of Innsbruck

Note: This blogpost is part of a series on „Corporate social responsibility and international law“ that presents the main findings of the contributions published in August Reinisch, Stephan Hobe, Eva-Maria Kieninger & Anne Peters (eds), Unternehmensverantwortung und Internationales Recht, C.F. Müller, 2020.

1. The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (2011) have set forth a process by which Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) rules are to be further specified. The approach followed is not to impose specific results but to create procedures by which CSR is given further flesh on the basis of a continuing dialogue between all relevant stakeholders.