European Journal of Law Reform

Artikel

The Application of Exception Clauses of the Rome Convention and the Rome I Regulation by the Dutch Courts

An Escape from Reality?

Keywords Rome Convention 1980, Rome I Regulation, choice of law, exception clause, international commercial contracts
Authors Emmely de Haan
Author's information

175107 Emmely de Haan
The author graduated from Utrecht University in 2012 with an LL.M. degree in Dutch Private Law and is currently an LL.M. candidate at the University of Virginia in the United States, specializing in International Trade Law and Regulation and Dispute Settlement. This article is a shorter version of her master thesis, which was supervised by Professor dr. K.R.S.D. Boele-Woelki.
  • Abstract

      Both the Rome Convention and its successor the Rome I Regulation contain much discussed provisions on applicable law in the case of absence of a choice of law. Both instruments contain so called ‘exception clauses’ which refer to a closer connection of the contract with one state to the law of another state resulting from the general presumptions. The Netherlands is the frontrunner with a highly restrictive interpretation of the exception clauses. The applicable law to a transnational dispute might not always be the law of the competent court, although courts tend to prefer their own national law with which they are familiar. This year it has been exactly 20 years since the first revolutionary ruling on the subject by the Dutch Supreme Court, the so called Balenpers case. With the recent transition of the Convention into the Regulation, it is useful to analyse these connecting factors and review them in the context of the new Regulation. The Dutch courts have developed numerous connecting factors over the years. The article analyses Dutch case law on international contracts of carriage and international employment contracts from the implementation of the Rome Convention to date.

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