Richard J Howarth, 2004
This article explores choice of law in international commercial contracts with reference to the Lex Mercatoria within the context of unification of international commercial law. The author presents a detailed survey of the origins of the Lex Mercatoria, contemporary arguments supporting its existence, recognition of the Lex Mercatoria in a number of international legal instruments and its modern applications. The uneasy relationship between the Lex Mercatoria and courts in civil code and common law jurisdictions, including New Zealand, is also examined.
Nicky Richardson, 1992
The author provides an in-depth discussion and criticism of the Rome Convention on the Law Applicable to Contractual Obligations (1980). The essence of the discussion centres on how the Convention deals with the concept of party autonomy in contractual situations. The author concludes that Article 3 supports party autonomy and clarifies certain related matters, whereas Article 7(1), which relates to mandatory rules, is an ambiguous and uncertain provision. Lastly, it is suggested that the concepts of characteristic performance and mandatory rules should be considered when reforming New Zealand choice of law in contract.
"Exclusive Jurisdiction Clauses – A New Zealand Perspective on the Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements"
G Shapira and R Lazarovitch, 2008
Exclusive jurisdiction clauses are a frequently used tool in transnational contracts. The parties agree on a forum that would hear any potential dispute. This should ensure certainty and predictability for all parties. However, the complexity of the New Zealand rules and the jurisdictional discretion of the courts lead to often unpredictable results when exclusive jurisdiction clauses are encountered. The 2005 Hague Convention on Choice of Court Agreements aims to address such problems with clear rules that promote certainty in commercial dealings and validate party autonomy. Even though the Convention is not free from criticism, the authors conclude that New Zealand should nonetheless adopt it.
Paul Myburgh, 2010
This article discusses the different treatment of ship suppliers’ claims in Anglo-Common Law jurisdictions. The United States, until recently, was the only jurisdiction that granted a maritime lien status to such claims. Canada, to avoid discrepancies with the United States, which could lead to forum shopping, has recently introduced a statutory maritime lien for certain ship suppliers’ claims. The author urges other Anglo-Common Law jurisdictions, including New Zealand, to reconsider their position in light of such developments.
Elsabe Schoeman, 2010
The article examines the approach adopted in Rome II towards the substance-procedure distinction and signposts its potential significance for contemporary conflicts theory from an Anglo-Common Law perspective. The Rome II approach is regarded to be generally different from the one found under the common law. This is evident from a far broader category of matters assigned to the applicable law and a corresponding narrower category of matters governed by the lex fori. The author urges Anglo-Common Law jurisdictions to pay closer attention to Rome II and use it to re-evaluate their own positions in regard to the distinction between substance and procedure.
Elsabe Schoeman, 2011
The Rome II Regulation deals with choice of law in tort. The article examines the value of this Regulation vis-à-vis third (non-EU Anglo-Common law) countries, analysing the unique EU environment and the continuous movement towards uniformity and certainty. The author discusses the general choice of law regime laid down in Article 4 of the Regulation and applies it to two famous Anglo-Common law cases: Neilson v Overseas Projects Corporation of Victoria Ltd and Harding v Wealands, concluding that these cases would probably have been decided differently under Rome II. The article concludes that Rome II may indeed have comparative value for these third countries and that its importance should not be underestimated.