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"Reform of Choice of Law Rules for Tort"

The authors comment upon various aspects of the Private International Law (Choice of Law in Tort) Bill. The Bill abolishes the long-standing double actionability rule governing the choice of law in tort claims in New Zealand. The approach mandated by the Bill is that the New Zealand courts apply the lex loci delicti, with a flexible exception where the case is substantially more closely connected with another country. The authors explain the Bill’s approach and argue that it is sufficiently versatile to cover claims such as defamation and breach of intellectual property rights. The authors suggest that the Bill should exclude the doctrine of renvoi, given that the function of choice of law rules is to identify which country’s law New Zealand courts, not foreign courts, should apply to a particular claim. Finally, the authors recommend that the Bill allow for future common law developments in cases where parties agree as to the law that should apply to tort claims arising within their relationship.

Author
Jack Wass and Maria Hook
Published in
New Zealand Law Journal
Year
2017
Pages
24-26

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