Enforcement of foreign judgments

In many cases, the winning party cannot be satisfied either because the adverse party is not a resident of the country where the judgment was issued or because it lacks assets in that country. In such cases, the satisfaction of the winning party must be sought in a foreign country, where the litigant who lost is located or where he/she has assets. Such cases now arise very often due to globalization and the increase of cross-border business transactions. Foreign judgments can be enforced in Greece, either by virtue of Greek procedural provisions or by virtue of international/bilateral conventions and European Union legal instruments.

In the context of the European integration, recognition and enforcement of judgments issued in other Member States is governed by regulations which are directly applicable in the Member States, such as Regulation 1215/2012 on civil and commercial matters (known as the “Brussels Ia” Regulation) and Regulation 2201/2003 on matrimonial matters and parental responsibility (known as the “Brussels Iia” Regulation). Moreover, Greece has ratified the International New York Convention of 1958 on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, which has been incorporated into Greek law.

Our firm is experienced in these matters and provides specialized legal services to clients in Greece or abroad, who wish to declare enforceable in Greece decisions issued by foreign courts. We represented foreign legal entities, corporations and physical persons who enforced foreign judgments in Greece. Moreover, in many cases we have achieved the non enforcement of foreign decisions against our clients, invoking the provisions of the relevant EU legislation.

Our firm has represented numerous corporations and individuals which successfully challenged foreign judgments with reference to reasons of non-enforcement in Greece. In urgent cases, we have succeeded in issuing injunctions in favor of our clients, based on decisions issued in other Member States.

Publications related to the enforcement of foreign judgments

  • Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments  in Cases of State Succession: The Paradigm of the 1981 Convention between Greece and the former USSR on Judicial Assistance in Civil and Criminal Matters (with Dr. P. Yiannopoulos), Currents International Law Journal, 2003.31-36
  •  Recognition or Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards and State Succession: The Ghostly Paradigm of the Agreement between Greece and Yugoslavia in Comparison to the New York Convention of 1958, Croatian Arbitration Yearbook 2009.281-297.
  • The Enforceability of Foreign Arbitral Awards Adjudicating Punitive Damages, Festschrift P.J. Kozyris, 2007, 493-503.