The procedure to be followed for executing a foreign judgment in Cyprus depends on the country where the judgment sought to be executed was issued.
1. Enforcement of a judgment issued by a court of an EU member state in Cyprus
If a judgment was issued by the judicial authorities of an EU country (or Switzerland, Norway and Iceland), it can be recognised and enforced under EU regulations.
Under the “Brussels I Regulation (recast)” – Regulation (EU) 1215/2012 on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters (recast), a judgment given in an EU Member, which is enforceable in that country is enforceable in Cyprus.
Regulation 1215/2012 provides for limited circumstances and restricted grounds on which the enforceability of a judgment can be opposed.
For judgments issued in legal proceedings, authentic instruments formally drawn up or registered and to court settlements approved or concluded before the 10.01.2015, Regulation No 44/2001, the predecessor of the Brussels I Regulation (recast), continues to apply.
In addition, Regulation 805/2004, provides for the enforcement for claims which are uncontested by debtors. Regulation 805/2004 enables judgments, court settlements and authentic instruments on uncontested claims to be recognised and enforced in other EU member states (except Denmark), without any intermediate proceedings.
2. Enforcement of a judgment issued by judicial authority of non – EU member states in Cyprus
If the judgment was issued by a court of a non-EU country, the steps required to be taken in order to enforce the judgement depend on various factors.
(a) If the judgment was issued by country with which Cyprus has a bilateral treaty providing for the recognition and enforcement of judgments given in the courts of that state, then the provisions of Law 121 (I)/2000 apply.
Cyprus has concluded bilateral treaties with
- Czech Republic Rat. Law 68/82
- Hungary, Rat. Law 7/83
- Bulgaria, Rat. Law 18/84
- Greece, Rat. Law 55/84
- Syria, Rat. Law 160/86
- Russian Federation, Rat. Law 172/86
- Serbia, Slovenia, Rat. Law 179/86
- Egypt, Rat. Law, 32(III)/96
- China, Rat. Law, 19(III)/95
- Poland, Rat. Law 10(III)/97
Law 121 (I)/2000 (Enforcement of a foreign judgment using the Foreign Courts (Recognition, Registration and Enforcement by Convention) was passed in order to simplify the procedure for enforcement and execution of foreign judgments in Cyprus.
(b) If the judgment was issued by a UK court or a by a UK overseas territory of the United Kingdom (for example the British Virgin Islands) then that judgment can be enforced under the Certain Judgments of Courts of Commonwealth Countries (Reciprocal Enforcement) Law Cap. 10.
(c) If none of the above apply, it may be possible to bring an action at common law or raise a counterclaim on the foreign judgment. If however the foreign judgment is enforceable under the Brussels I Regulation (recast) or any other legislation, it cannot be enforced by a common law action on the judgment.
Cyprus has also acceded to the Convention οn the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards signed in New York on 10.06.1958.
The contracting states can be found on website http://www.uncitral.org/uncitral/en/uncitral_texts/arbitration/NYConvention.html
How can we help?
We are able to assist in the registration and execution of foreign judgments in Cyprus. If you require further information or advice regarding the registration and enforcement of foreign judgments in Cyprus contact us.
Theodorou Law is a Cyprus law firm with Cyprus lawyers and other legal experts on legal matters involving Cyprus law, EU law and international law. The above should be used as a source of general information only. It is not intended to give a definitive statement of the law.
If you have a query or wish to receive further information, please contact us using using [email protected]