Comparative Guides

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4. Results: Answers
Enforcement of Foreign Judgments
Trends and predictions
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?

Answer ... As regards non-EU judgments, other than a few amendments in 2013 and 2017, Law 218/1995 has remained unchanged over the years.

Some scholars have advocated for reform of the provisions on recognition and enforcement of non-EU judgments, to make them more consistent with the European instruments. Specifically, they argue that reforms should address issues such as:

  • the express prohibition against a review of the merits of foreign judgments; and
  • the recognition and enforcement of interim or provisional measures.

However, a reform of Law 218/1995 does not seem to be on the agenda of the Italian legislature.

Conversely, there have been some relatively recent significant court cases concerning the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments.

In Judgment 16601 of 5 July 2017, the Italian Supreme Court resolved the debated issue of the enforceability in Italy of foreign judgments ordering the losing party to pay punitive damages. Such judgments raised concerns regarding their compatibility with public policy in Italy and the case law on the issue was divided. The Supreme Court found that punitive damages are not per se contrary to public policy, and that if certain conditions are met, a foreign judgment ordering a party to pay punitive damages can be declared enforceable in Italy.

For more information about this answer please contact: Matilde Rota from Studio Legale Withers
Enforcement of Foreign Judgments