The EAPIL blog is reporting about the Association’s founding conference in Aarhus by dedicated posts published at the end of each conference day. Day one was covered by the post that can be found here. Please follow us on Twitter (@eapilorg) and LinkedIn for updates as the conference unfolds. Check out our new Instagram account, too!
Nearly one hundred persons attended the second day of the founding conference of the European Association of Private International Law.
The morning session was devoted to the issues of private international law raised by digitalisation.
Marie-Élodie Ancel (University Paris II Panthéon-Assas) focused on online platforms. She critically analysed the current state of EU law in this area, as regards both issues of applicable law and issues of jurisdiction, and stressed the importance of private enforcement and access to effective judicial remedies.
Two presentations followed, by Matthias Lehmann (University of Vienna) and Burcu Yüksel Ripley (University of Aberdeen), which dealt with the legal challenges posed by blockchains and crypto assets from the standpoint of private international law. Matthias Lehmann focused on the issues raised by the characterisation of situations that occur on the blockchain and their localisation for conflict-of-laws purposes, whereas Burcu Yüksel Ripley addressed the questions that revolve around the transfer of crypto assets.
With Burkhard Hess (Max Planck Institute Luxembourg) the discussion turned on the use of digital tools in judicial cooperation in civil matters. He illustrated the developments towards digitalisation which occurred in the justice systems of Member States, notably in Germany, and examined the initiatives taken by the Union with respect to the digitalisation of judicial cooperation in civil matters, including, recently, Regulation 2022/850 on the e-CODEX system.
The topic of the afternoon session was fragmentation in private international law. Francisco Garcimartín-Alférez (Universidad Autonoma de Madrid) addressed the topic with reference to commercial matters, while Thalia Kruger (University of Antwerp) discussed the matter as concerns family law and the law of persons. The two presentations dealt with the challenges posed by the co-existence of sectorial instruments, the interplay of national, regional and international instruments and the dialogue between courts (the Court of Justice, the European Court of Human Rights, national courts). The risks associated with fragmentation (gaps, frictions, inconsistencies, etc.) were examined alongside the advantages that the diversity of the sources and the progressive development of the law may bring about in some circumstances. Strategies aimed at mitigating the above risks (such as analogy, the recourse to general principles and inter-textual interpretation) were also discussed.
A rich debate followed both sessions.
Jeremy Heymann chairing the morning session
Geneviève Saumier chairing the afternoon session
The afternoon session panel with Geneviève Saumier, Francisco Garcimartín Alférez, Thalia Kruger, Andreas Stein and Kermit Roosevelt III
Thomas Kadner Graziano during the debate on fragmentation