On 7 Nov. 2023, the Chengdu International Commercial Court, in a case of recognition of a foreign divorce judgment, exempted the parties from consular authentication formalities in accordance with the “Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalization for Foreign Public Documents” (hereinafter the “Convention”), and issued a judgment.
This is the first time that the Chinese court has applied the Convention in litigation. The judgment in this case was rendered just on the date when the Convention came into force in China.
In this case, a foreign court issued a divorce judgment in 2009. In August 2023, the defendant of the divorce judgment applied to the Chengdu Intermediate People’s Court for the recognition of the said divorce judgment.
The Chengdu International Commercial Court, affiliated with the Chengdu Intermediate People’s Court, heard the case and found that the matters of the parties met the conditions set by Chinese law for recognizing foreign court divorce judgments. There was no violation of the basic principles of Chinese law, nor was there any harm to national sovereignty, security, or public social interests. Therefore, the foreign judgment shall be recognized.
Meanwhile, the court noted that the public documents submitted by the parties in the case had been issued in another Contracting State, and the relevant competent authority of that State had issued an apostille as required by the Convention. As the Convention had entered into force in China, the court waived the authentication formalities and recognized the authenticity of the relevant signatures and seals.
Contributors: CJO Staff Contributors Team