Conflict of laws


Conflict of laws is a doctrine of law which regulates legal cases.

It often involves a foreign element, which when a different jurisdiction’s law is applied will result in a different outcome. Conflict of laws, however, is not a doctrine which only applies internationally: in countries in which different laws apply in different states (such as in the United States of America) conflict of laws will also be relevant.

In Europe, issues of conflict of laws, also known as private international laws, are usually solved by the European Court of Justice.

The practicalities of your case

If you require the jurisdiction of your case to be decided before the substantive case is heard, it is likely that your bill for legal costs will become large. However, this can be worthwhile.

Any contractual agreement made been parties should always contain a clause stating the jurisdiction of any dispute, even if both parties are resident in the same country. In international trade agreements it is absolutely imperative that such a clause is written into a contract as failure to do so can be unnecessarily costly.

It is often the case that, if a dispute arises, the parties will choose the jurisdiction that most suits their side of the case and as a result there is unlikely to be agreement on the jurisdiction unless it is decided beforehand.

In international trade it is important that a specialist solicitor drafts the contract and the clause to ensure that the chosen jurisdiction is included and has legal effect. Failure on the part of the solicitor to properly draft the relevant clause can result in a claim for negligence against the solicitor.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on conflict of laws, Contact Law can put you in touch with a specialist commercial solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding commercial solicitors please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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