On 5 May 2021, the Legislative Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) passed the “Mainland Judgments in Matrimonial and Family Cases (Reciprocal Recognition and Enforcement) Bill” (内地婚姻家庭判决(相互承认及强制执行)条例草案) (hereinafter referred to as the "Bill").
The Bill is to implement the “Arrangement on Reciprocal Recognition and Enforcement of Civil Judgments in Matrimonial and Family Cases by the Courts of the Mainland and of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region” (关于内地与香港特别行政区法院相互认可和执行婚姻家庭民事案件判决的安排, hereinafter referred to as the “Arrangement”) signed between the HKSAR Government and China’s Supreme People's Court (SPC) on 20 June 2017.
The Bill will apply to Mainland and Hong Kong judgments made in matrimonial or family cases and Mainland divorce certificates on or after the date of its entry into force. The Bill mainly provides for a registration system, i.e. allowing the parties to apply to Hong Kong courts for the recognition and enforcement of Mainland judgments rendered in such cases or the recognition of Mainland divorce certificates issued by civil affairs departments. Regarding the Mainland courts’ recognition of Hong Kong judgments rendered in matrimonial or family cases, the Arrangement would be brought into operation after the promulgation of a judicial interpretation by the SPC.
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Contributors: CJO Staff Contributors Team