The Month in Retrospect: What Else Happened in April 2021

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Some Back and Forth on Brexit and Lugano

On 8 April 2021, I covered the first anniversay of the UK’s application to join the Lugano Convention, and took a fairly pessimistic view as to the prospects of the UK becoming a member state. So I was quite surprised to see a headline in the Financial Times on 12 April 2021 that claimed: “UK set to secure Brussels’ backing for joining legal pact“. The FT’s sources apparently got it wrong, however, and a couple of hours later the FT had to retract its report: “Brussels opposes UK bid to join legal pact, splitting EU states – European Commission says Britain should not be allowed to rejoin Lugano convention.” Other sources such as  Sueddeutsche Zeitung confirm that there had been no change in the EU Commission’s policy – there is no prospect of the UK joining Lugano any time soon. Continue reading

Is Germany’s Position on Pre-trial Discovery of Documents under the Hague Evidence Convention Softening?

hcch logoIn 2013, a decision by the President of the Court of Appeals (Oberlandesgericht) Frankfurt led me to speculate whether Germany’s position on the pre-trial discovery of docments under the Hague Evidence Convention is softening. In April 2014, the Federal Ministry of Justice came forward with a proposal to modify Germany’s position on discovery of documents and to allow it in certain circumstances. In this post, I try to summarize the various responses to this initiative. Continue reading