Comparative Guides

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4. Results: Answers
Enforcement of Foreign Judgments
7.
Enforcing the foreign judgment
7.1
Once a declaration of enforceability has been granted, how can the foreign judgment be enforced?
United States

Answer ... Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 69(a)(1) provides that: “A money judgment is enforced by a writ of execution, unless the court directs otherwise. The procedure on execution – and in proceedings supplementary to and in aid of judgment or execution – must accord with the procedure of the state where the court is located, but a federal statute governs to the extent it applies.”

State law remedies available to enforce foreign judgments generally include injunctions, notices of pendency, orders of attachment and receivership. In New York, § 6201(5) of the Civil Practice Law and Rules (CPLR), governing attachment procedures, is often the vehicle of choice for enforcing a foreign judgment. After the action is brought, the court will rule on whether the foreign judgment can be recognised in New York. New York also permits ‘turnover actions’ under CPLR § 5225(b) (see question 7.2).

For more information about this answer please contact: Ana Reyes from Williams & Connolly
7.2
Can the foreign judgment be enforced against third parties?
United States

Answer ... Many states, such as New York, permit ‘turnover actions’ (see CPLR § 5225(b)). A turnover action is a special proceeding brought by creditors when the person with possession or control of the money or property is not the judgment debtor, but a third person - for example, a financial institution with branches in New York. Upon a sufficient showing, courts “shall require such person to pay the money, or so much of it as is sufficient to satisfy the judgment, to the judgment creditor and, if the amount to be so paid is insufficient to satisfy the judgment, to deliver any other personal property, or so much of it as is of sufficient value to satisfy the judgment, to a designated sheriff” (CPLR § 5225(b)). The “burden of proof in a turnover proceeding rests with the judgment creditor”, but the creditor “is entitled to broad discovery to assist in prosecuting the claims” (Petrocelli v Petrocelli Elec Co, 995 NYS 2d 552, 553 (App Div 2014). Additionally, a court sitting in New York with personal jurisdiction over a non-sovereign third party can recall to New York extraterritorial assets owned by a foreign sovereign (Peterson v Islamic Republic of Iran, 876 F 3d 63 (2d Cir 2017)), petition for cert filed (US 7 May 2018) No 17-1534).

For more information about this answer please contact: Ana Reyes from Williams & Connolly
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Enforcement of Foreign Judgments