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28 April 2021

The Lugano convention – the journey continues

As we have discussed in our previous updates on the enforcement of judgments between the UK and Switzerland, the UK’s departure from the European Union has had the effect of leaving the UK outside of the Lugano Convention of 2007 and without any treaty arrangements between it and Switzerland regarding the recognition and enforcement of judgments. UK and Swiss jurisdictions will now be able to recognise each other’s judgments only under domestic private international law.

Switzerland (and Iceland and Norway) has indicated its support for the UK’s accession as an individual member of the Lugano Convention. Last week there was speculation in the press that the European Commission was opposed to the UK joining the Lugano Convention (perhaps in part because unlike Switzerland, Norway and Iceland, the UK is not a member of EFTA and thereby the EEA internal market).

We understand that no formal decision has been reached and anticipate that there will be further developments in the coming weeks. In the meantime, for the reasons explored in our most recent update on this subject, uncertainty remains in Switzerland over the manner in which pre-1 January 2021 UK judgments should be recognised.

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