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No execution of a Baltimore expired money judgment, even if previously given full faith and credit in Greece

Creditors in international business transactions need to follow a three step plan in order to secure the satisfaction of their claims: Secure an enforceable judgment in their jurisdiction; declare the latter enforceable in the country of the judgment debtor; and proceed swiftly or at least timely to execution measures. Practice shows that the problems are usually appearing in steps 1 or 2. A recent ruling of the Greek Supreme Court demonstrates that potential pitfalls are to be expected even beyond.

 

THE FACTS

The parties are a Greek [GR] and an American company [US]. Following litigation before the courts of Baltimore, Maryland, US was in possession of an enforceable money judgment against G issued in October 1999. US moved to recognize the above judgment in Greece. Its application was successful, and no appeal was lodged by GR against the judgment of the Athens Court of 1st instance [Nr. 4138/2002, unreported].

Opinion of Advocate General Bobek in the case C-41/19, FX: Jurisdiction to rule on an application opposing enforcement of a maintenance decision

In today’s Opinion, Advocate General Bobek analyses whether the courts of a Member State in which a maintenance decision delivered by the courts of another Member State is enforced have jurisdiction to rule on an application opposing the enforcement.

More specifically, the reference for a preliminary ruling originates in a dispute between a maintenance debtor residing in Germany and a maintenance creditor residing in Poland. The latter lodged with the referring court an application requesting the recognition of a Polish maintenance decision and a declaration of its enforceability in Germany in accordance with Maintenance Regulation. The referring court delivered an order for enforcement in respect of the Polish maintenance decision. On the basis of that order, the defendant sought the enforcement of this decision against the debtor in Germany. The maintenance debtor opposed the enforcement based on Paragraph 767 of the German Code of Civil Procedure (the ZPO) and argued that the claim underlying the maintenance decision has been settled by payment.