April 07 2009
In 2006 the United Kingdom notified the European Commission that it intended to opt out of EU Regulation 593/2008 on the law applicable to contractual obligations (Rome I). However, responses to a 2008 Ministry of Justice consultation on whether the United Kingdom should opt in to a substantially revised version of Rome I showed clear support for an opt-in.
The ministry wrote to the commission at the end of July 2008, notifying it of the United Kingdom's intention to accept and participate in Rome I, thereby setting in motion the opt-in procedure. In December 2008 the commission issued a decision(1) in response to the United Kingdom's request to accept and to participate in Rome I, confirming that Rome I will apply in the United Kingdom. Article 26 of Rome I, which deals with an EU member state's obligation to notify the commission of international conventions to which it is a party, will apply in the United Kingdom from June 17 2009. The remainder of the regulation will apply from December 17 2009.
Rome I will replace the Rome Convention on the Law Applicable to Contractual Obligations 1980 - the only remaining EU private international law treaty in treaty form. Its objective is to standardize the rules by which the applicable law in contractual claims is determined, thereby extending the harmonization of private international law in the European Union and reducing the risk of forum shopping.
For further information on this topic please contact Anna Pertoldi or Kate Hurford at Herbert Smith LLP by telephone (+44 20 7374 8000) or by fax (+44 20 7374 0888) or by email (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com).
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