Comparative Guides
Welcome to Mondaq Comparative Guides - your comparative global Q&A guide.
Our Comparative Guides provide an overview of some of the key points of law and practice and allow you to compare regulatory environments and laws across multiple jurisdictions.
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Results: 4 Answers
Enforcement of Foreign Judgments
1.
Legal and judicial framework
1.1
Which legislative and regulatory provisions govern the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in your jurisdiction?
 
Mozambique
The Code of Civil Procedure.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
1.2
Which bilateral and multilateral instruments on the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments have effect in your jurisdiction?
 
Mozambique
The New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
1.3
Which courts have jurisdiction to hear applications for the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments?
 
Mozambique
The Supreme Court at the place where the party against which recognition and enforcement is sought is domiciled.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
2.
Requirements for enforceability
2.1
What types of judgments may be recognised and enforced in your jurisdiction? Are any types of judgments specifically precluded from enforcement?
 
Mozambique
In order for a judgment to be recognised and enforced in Mozambique, the following criteria must be met:

  • There is no doubt as to the authenticity of the document containing the judgment or the reasoning of the decision;
  • The judgment is considered res judicata under the law of the country in which it was rendered;
  • The jurisdiction of the foreign court was not determined by fraud and the case does not fall within the exclusive competence of the Mozambique courts;
  • The exception of lis pendens or res judicata cannot be invoked regarding a case between the same parties before a Mozambique court, unless it was the foreign court that prevented jurisdiction;
  • The defendant was properly summoned to the proceedings in accordance with the law of the country of the court of origin, and the principles of fair hearing and equality of the parties were observed;
  • Recognition of the judgment would not be manifestly incompatible with the principles of international public order of the Mozambican state; or
  • Where the judgment has been handed down against a Mozambican, the judgment does not offend the provisions of Mozambican private law, under the Mozambican conflict of law rules.
For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
2.2
Must a foreign judgment be final and binding before it can be enforced?
 
Mozambique
Yes. Certification is required to confirm that the judgment is considered res judicata under the law of the country in which it was rendered.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
2.3
Is a foreign judgment enforceable if it is subject to appeal in the foreign jurisdiction?
 
Mozambique
No. Certification is required to confirm that the judgment is considered res judicata under the law of the country in which it was rendered.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
2.4
What is the limitation period for making an application for recognition and enforcement?
 
Mozambique
There is no limitation period. As long as the original decision remains valid, it may be subject to recognition before the Mozambican courts. However, a general 20-year statute of limitations applies for most claims. Shorter terms are established in specific cases and may constitute valid grounds to challenge recognition.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.
Recognition and enforcement process
3.1
Is recognition of a foreign judgment a separate process from enforcement and does it have separate legal effects?
 
Mozambique
Yes. Enforcement must always be preceded by an exequatur decision of a Mozambican court.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.2
What is the formal process for recognition and enforcement?
 
Mozambique
In order for a foreign judgment to be valid in Mozambique, the first step is to initiate the process for recognition via an exequatur decision. Only once an exequatur decision has been issued will it be possible to enforce the foreign judgment in Mozambique, whether by way of the initiation of enforcement proceedings or other type of action.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.3
What documents are required in support of an application for recognition and enforcement?
 
Mozambique
A certificate of the judgment, issued and certified by the court that issued it, confirming that the judgment is final and duly legalised by consular certification.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.4
What fees are payable for recognition and enforcement?
 
Mozambique
The fees are determined based on the Rules of Procedural Costs and will depend on the value of the claim. However, because court fees are payable in two instalments and the second instalment falls due only once a trial date is set – which seldom happens – in practice, the court fees are usually half the established rate.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.5
Is the applicant required to provide security for costs?
 
Mozambique
The court fees must be paid before the request for recognition is filed.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.6
How long does it usually take to obtain a declaration of enforceability?
 
Mozambique
This depends on several factors, including any obstacles to service. If the defendant is summoned quickly, it usually takes between six and 10 months.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
3.7
Can the applicant seek injunctive relief while the process is ongoing?
 
Mozambique
Yes, through a cautionary procedure, which may be general or specific (eg, concerning asset attachments or compulsory inventories), as long as the fear of damage to the invoked right may be indicatively proven.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
4.
Defences
4.1
On what grounds can the defendant challenge recognition and enforcement of a foreign judgment?
 
Mozambique
The defendant may challenge recognition and enforcement of a foreign judgment if one of the criteria set out in Article 1094 of the Code of Civil Procedure is not met, as follows:

  • There is no doubt as to the authenticity of the document containing the judgment or the reasoning of the decision;
  • The judgment is considered res judicata under the law of the country in which it was rendered;
  • The jurisdiction of the foreign court was not determined by fraud and the case does not fall within the exclusive competence of the Mozambique courts;
  • The exception of lis pendens or res judicata cannot be invoked regarding a case between the same parties before a Mozambique court, unless it was the foreign court that prevented jurisdiction;
  • The defendant was properly summoned to the proceedings in accordance with the law of the country of the court of origin, and the principles of fair hearing and equality of the parties were observed;
  • Recognition of the judgment would not be manifestly incompatible with the principles of international public order of the Mozambican state; or
  • Where the judgment has been handed down against a Mozambican, the judgment does not offend the provisions of Mozambican private law, under the Mozambican conflict of law rules.
For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
4.2
What is the limitation period for filing a challenge?
 
Mozambique
Once the defendant has been summoned, it has 10 days to file a challenge. The plaintiff may reply to the challenge within eight days.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
4.3
Can the defendant seek injunctive relief to prevent enforcement while a challenge is pending?
 
Mozambique
Not applicable, as the challenge is not independent from the recognition request, so a challenge will always precede an exequatur decision.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.
Court analysis and decision
5.1
Will the court review service of process in the initial proceedings?
 
Mozambique
Yes. A foreign judgment will be recognised only if the defendant was duly served and the principles of fair hearing and equality between the parties were respected.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.2
Will the court review the jurisdiction of the foreign court in the initial proceedings?
 
Mozambique
The Mozambican court will verify that the jurisdiction of the foreign court was not obtain by fraudulent means and that it is not contradicted by exclusive Portuguese jurisdiction.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.3
Will the court review the foreign judgment for compliance with applicable law and public policy?
 
Mozambique
Yes. The court will confirm that there is no doubt as to the authenticity of the document containing the judgment or the reasoning of the decision; and that recognition of the judgment would not be manifestly incompatible with the principles of international public order of the Mozambican state.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.4
Will the court review the merits of the foreign judgment?
 
Mozambique
No, except insofar as is necessary to verify that the judgment is not incompatible with the principles of international public order of the Mozambican state. If the defendant is a Mozambican citizen or company, the Mozambican court may also verify that, if Mozambican law were found to be the governing law under the Mozambican conflict of laws rules, and were applied accordingly, the decision would not be more favourable to the defendant.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.5
How will the court proceed if the foreign judgment conflicts with a previous judgment in relation to the same dispute between the same parties?
 
Mozambique
A foreign decision can be recognised only if the exception of lis pendens or res judicata cannot be invoked regarding a case between the same parties before a Mozambican court, unless it was the foreign court that prevented jurisdiction Otherwise, this will be considered a dilatory objection and the Mozambican court will not decide on the matter and thus will not recognise the judgment.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.6
Are there any other grounds on which the court may refuse to recognise and enforce the foreign judgment?
 
Mozambique
Yes. The court of its own motion (ex officio) can deny recognition if, upon examining the case or applying knowledge derived from the performance of its duties, it finds that any of the necessary criteria mentioned in questions 2.1, 5.3 and 5.5 are not met.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.7
Is partial recognition and enforcement possible?
 
Mozambique
No. The decision concerns recognition of the foreign judgment only; the Mozambican court will not change or adapt the original decision.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
5.8
How will the court deal with cost issues (eg, interest, court costs, currency issues)?
 
Mozambique
The court will not deal with these issues regarding the foreign judgement. If they are part of the judgment, they will be included in the recognition decision. Otherwise, they are not subject to the court’s jurisdiction.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
6.
Appeals
6.1
Can decisions in relation to the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments be appealed?
 
Mozambique
No, as competence lies with the Supreme Court.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
6.2
Can the applicant seek injunctive relief while the appeal is pending?
 
Mozambique
No specific provision is made for injunctive relief once a decision to refuse recognition has been issued. Injunctive relief, on general grounds, may be sought if the applicant can prove that the claim invoked would be clearly impaired by the decision refusing recognition.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
7.
Enforcing the foreign judgment
7.1
Once a declaration of enforceability has been granted, how can the foreign judgment be enforced?
 
Mozambique
Once an exequatur decision has been granted and has become final, the foreign judgment may be subject to coercive execution through a different procedure or, if it has become valid as if it were a Mozambican decision, before Mozambican public entities (eg, a foreign divorce judgment involving a Mozambican citizen may, once an exequatur decision has been obtained, serve as grounds to amend the Civil Register).

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
7.2
Can the foreign judgment be enforced against third parties?
 
Mozambique
Not directly, since enforcement may be sought only against those who are indicated as parties in the judgment. The sole exception concerns the successors of a deceased third party, whose status must be confirmed by filing valid documentary proof.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
8.
Trends and predictions
8.1
How would you describe the current enforcement landscape and prevailing trends in your jurisdiction? Are any new developments anticipated in the next 12 months, including any proposed legislative reforms?
 
Mozambique
No changes are expected in the foreseeable future.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL
9.
Tips and traps
9.1
What are your top tips for smooth recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments, and what potential sticking points would you highlight?
 
Mozambique
Service of process on the defendant is usually the biggest obstacle and can significantly delay the entire process. Service may be effected through a letter rogatory (through consular request), which is usually time consuming; however, if the current address of the defendant is known, service may be effected by Mozambican registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt, which may be faster.

For more information about this answer please contact: Filomeno Rodrigues from Ana Bruno & Associados Sociedade de Advogados SPRL