On 2 March 2022 the US signed the Hague Convention of 2 July 2019 on the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in civil or commercial matters. Five more States have already signed the Convention, namely Costa Rica, Israel, the Russian Federation, Ukraine and Uruguay.
So far, none of the above States has ratified the Convention. According to Article 28, two ratifications are needed for the Convention to enter into force.
In July 2021, the European Commission presented a proposal for a Council decision on the accession to the Convention by the European Union. In December 2021, the Council forwarded the draft Council decision to the European Parliament, the consent of which is a precondition for the adoption of the decision pursuant to Article 218 of the TFEU.
Signature indicates that the country plans at some point to ratify the convention, but the timing of the ratification is not clear. For example, the United States signed the Hague Choice of Court Agreements Convention on January 19, 2009, but has not ratified that convention largely due to a lack of consensus on the domestic implementation and whether it should be exclusively federal or a combination of federal and state. Similarly, the plans for domestic implementation of the 2019 Judgments Convention raise issues of state and federal law since currently recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments is a matter of state law. Treatment of foreign country money judgments are governed by a uniform state law in 38 states (either the original 1962 act or the revised 2005 Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act.) There has been talk through the years of implementing the two conventions as part of a package. In any case, since the United States was the proponent of the original efforts for the Hague Conference to undertake a convention on foreign judgments, it is a tribute to those who began the process almost 30 years ago, especially the late Arthur von Mehren.
Good to know. Incidentally, is there a power, or even a duty, to deem a state’s signature null and void, on the basis that a convention made to secure cooperation between civilised states is one from which a government may by its own post-signature barbarity exclude itself ? I only ask because I want to know.