Answer ... The procedures for recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in Greece depend on where such judgments originated, and may be effected under:
- EU laws and regulations, where the judgment has been issued in an EU member state;
- international conventions and bilateral treaties between Greece and non-EU countries; or
- the domestic legislation governing the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in Greece (ie, the relevant provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure).
Where EU regulations or international conventions and bilateral treaties are applicable, these instruments supersede the national provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure.
With respect to judgments rendered by the courts of EU member states:
- EU Regulation 1215/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2012 on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters (the Recast Brussels Regulation) applies to EU judgments issued on or after 10 January 2015; and
- its predecessor, the Brussels Regulation (EU Regulation 44/2001) applies to EU judgments issued before 10 January 2015.
The Recast Brussels Regulation takes precedence over and supersedes bilateral (and in exceptional cases multilateral) agreements and treaties on the recognition and enforcement of judgments negotiated and concluded between member states that cover the same matters as the Recast Brussels Regulation (see Articles 69, 70 and 71 of the Recast Brussels Regulation).
Answer ... Greece has signed several international conventions and bilateral treaties regarding the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments (or other enforceable titles), including the following:
- Treaty between Yugoslavia (and its successor states) and Greece 1959, ratified by Law 4007/1959;
- Treaty between Germany and Greece 1961, ratified by Law 4305/1962;
- Treaty between Austria and Greece 1965, ratified by Law 137/1969;
- Treaty between Romania and Greece 1972, ratified by Law 429/1974;
- Treaty between Lebanon and Greece 1975, ratified by Law 1099/1980;
- Treaty between Bulgaria and Greece 1976, ratified by Law 841/1978;
- Treaty between Hungary and Greece 1979, ratified by Law 1149/1981;
- Treaty between Poland and Greece 1979, ratified by Law 1184/1981;
- Treaty between Czechoslovakia (and its successors) and Greece 1980, ratified by Law 1323/1983;
- Treaty between the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (and its successors) and Greece 1981, ratified by Law 1242/1982;
- Treaty between Syria and Greece 1981, ratified by Law 1450/1984;
- Treaty between Cyprus and Greece 1984, ratified by Law 1548/1985;
- Treaty between Albania and Greece 1993, ratified by Law 2313/1995;
- Treaty between Tunisia and Greece 1993, ratified by Law 2228/1994;
- Treaty between China and Greece 1994, ratified by Law 2358/1995;
- Treaty between Georgia and Greece 1999, ratified by Law 2813/2000;
- Treaty between Armenia and Greece 2000, ratified by Law 3007/2002;
- Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Decisions Relating to Maintenance Obligations, ratified by Law 3171/2003 (multilateral);
- New York Convention 1956 on the recovery abroad of maintenance, ratified by Law 4421/1964 (multilateral);
- Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road, ratified by Law 559/1977 (multilateral);
- Convention Concerning International Carriage by Rail 1980, as amended by the Vilnius Protocol 1999 (multilateral), ratified by Law 1593/1986;
- Brussels Convention 1969 on civil liability for oil pollution damage, ratified by Law 314/1976 (multilateral);
- Hague Convention 1980 on the civil aspect of international child abduction, ratified by Law 2102/1992;
- EU Convention 1980 on recognition and enforcement of decisions concerning custody of children and on restoration of custody of children, ratified by Law 2104/1992; and
- Lugano Convention on Jurisdiction and the Recognition and Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters 2007 concerning recognition and enforcement of judgments originating from Switzerland, Norway and Iceland.
Answer ... In principle, the single-member first-instance court is competent to hear cases on the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments. According to the Recast Brussels Regulation and the domestic legislation, the local jurisdiction is determined in principle by reference to the domicile of the defendant (‘actor sequitur forum rei’). According to the domestic legislation, where the debtor does not have its domicile or residence in Greece, the Single-Member First-Instance Court of Athens is competent.