EU Private International Law
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EU Private International Law

Harmonization of Laws

Peter Stone

This book focuses on harmonization of conflict laws at the European Community level, which has been driven by the introduction of a series of conventions and regulations. It offers critical assessment of these advances across four main areas of concern: civil jurisdiction and judgments; the law applicable to civil obligations; family law; and insolvency.
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Chapter 3: Domicile

Peter Stone


THE GENERAL RULES ON DIRECT JURISDICTION The principal connecting-factor used by Chapter II of the Brussels I Regulation is the defendant’s domicile at the institution of the proceedings. The basic rules on direct jurisdiction are laid down by Articles 2–4 of the Regulation, which echo Articles 2–4 of the Brussels Convention without substantial alteration.1 Where the defendant is domiciled in a Member State, Article 2 of the Regulation confers jurisdiction on the courts of that State,2 and Article 3 deprives the courts of the other Member States of jurisdiction.3 Where the defendant is not domiciled in any Member State, Article 4 remits the jurisdiction of the courts of each Member State to the law of the State whose court is seised.4 References to a Member State exclude Denmark.5 1 In the revision negotiations which eventually led to the Brussels I Regulation, the Council Working Party considered a proposal to substitute habitual residence for domicile throughout the Convention, but ultimately rejected the proposal. Compare the final draft of April 1999 (Council doc. 7700/99, JUSTCIV 60) with the earlier draft of January 1999 (Council doc. 5202/99, JUSTCIV 1). 2 Article 2 provides: ‘(1) Subject to this Regulation, persons domiciled in a Member State shall, whatever their nationality, be sued in the courts of that Member State. (2) Persons who are not nationals of the Member State in which they are domiciled shall be governed by the rules of jurisdiction applicable to nationals of that State.’ 3 Article 3(1)...

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