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Buxbaum: The Interpretation and Effect of Permissive Forum Selection Clauses Under U.S. Law

Professor Hannah Buxbaum has recently published an important report (see here), prepared for the International Academy of Comparative Law’s International Congress, on forum selection clauses.  Below is the abstract.


A forum selection clause is a form of contractual waiver. By this device, a contract party waives its rights to raise jurisdictional or venue objections if a lawsuit is initiated against it in the chosen court. The use of such a clause in a particular case may therefore raise a set of questions under contract law. Is the waiver valid? Was it procured by fraud, duress, or other unconscionable means? What is its scope? And so on. Unlike most contractual waivers, though, a forum selection clause affects not only the private rights and obligations of the parties, but something of more public concern: the jurisdiction of a court to resolve a dispute. The enforcement of such a clause therefore raises an additional set of questions under procedural law. For instance, if the parties designate a court in a forum that is otherwise unconnected to the dispute, must (or should) that court hear a case initiated there? If one of the parties initiates litigation in a non-designated forum that is connected to the dispute, must (or should) that court decline to hear the case?

Le droit international privé dans le labyrinthe des plateformes digitales

To celebrate its 30th Private International Law Day, the SICL is holding a conference devoted to the new challenges of what is sometimes described as the “collaborative” or “sharing” economy. It will take place in Lausanne on 28th June 2018.

Recast of the Evidence and Service Regulations

The European Commission has published yesterday two communications, proposing the amendment of the Evidence and Service Regulations (1201/2000 & 1393/2007 respectively). The texts can be retrieved here  and here.

The key amendments suggested by both proposals have been summarized by Prof. Emmanuel Guinchard here and here.