Court of Appeal—enforcement of foreign judgments and public policy defences (Lenkor v Puri)

This case provides a helpful summary of the principles a court will apply in respect of an application to enforce a foreign judgment under common law. It makes clear that the considerations are starkly different to those applicable to a claim to enforce a contract. In particular, there is sound justification for taking a different approach to substantive claims and enforcement claims, reflecting the different role performed by the court in each circumstance. The Court of Appeal upheld the decision below in this instance, which was to allow the enforcement of a judgment properly obtained by a court of competent jurisdiction. The defence that enforcement was contrary to public policy (the underlying contract being tainted by illegality) failed for a number of reasons, including the limited degree of connection between the claim and the relevant illegality, which must be balanced against the strong public policy in favour of finality and in favour of enforceability.

This article was first published by Lexis®PSL on 02/06/2021

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