Enforcement of Foreign Judgement in Nepal (2024)

1.1. Enforcement of Foreign Judgement in Nepal

Enforcement of Foreign Judgements in Nepal are conducted through the decisions of the High Court to be effectively recognized and given effect through procedures and requirements varying from one Jurisdiction to another. The Judicial Bodies of Nepal require the Judgement to meet stated Criteria for Recognition as stated by Section 37 of the Mutual Legal Assistance Act 2070.

1.2. Laws and Authorities Governing Foreign Judgement Enforcement in Nepal

Mutual Legal Assistance Act, 2070 (2014) has laid down that mutual Legal Assistance is permissible to be exchanged between Nepal and a Foreign State where a Bilateral Treaty exists between them. Section 5(h) of the Mutual Legal Assistance Act has provided for Mutual Legal Assistance to be provided between Nepal and a Foreign State for enforcing Judgements.

2. Criteria for Enforcement of Foreign Judgement

Foreign Judgements can be enforced in Nepal in conditions if a Bilateral Treaty has been developed from the Foreign Country or based on Reciprocity from the Country. Moreover, if a Foreign Country utilizes diplomatic channel to the Government of Nepal in respect of particular legal proceedings. The Judgement made by a Foreign Country must appear to satisfy the following criteria:

(a) such judgment has been made by the competent court with appropriate jurisdiction,

(b) such judgment is capable of being enforced in the concerned country,

(c) such judgment has become final and is not capable of being reviewed pursuant to the law of the concerned country.

3. Exceptions for Enforcement of Foreign Judgement

Special Provisions relating to enforcement of Judgements made by Foreign Courts, Section 37(3), a Judgement by a Foreign Country shan’t be recognized and Enforced in Nepal:

(a) If the judgment has been obtained by deception or fraud from the procedural perspective.

(b) If a case was filed in a court of Nepal before being filed in a foreign court between the same parties, over the same fact, and for the same purpose, and if the parties, fact, and purpose involved in such judgment are sub judice in the court of Nepal.

(c) If judgment has already been made by the court of Nepal.

(d) If judgment has been made by a court of another country and such judgment has already been recognized and enforced in or is in the process of being enforced in Nepal.

(e) If adequate opportunity has not been given to any party to fairly represent themselves in such judgment.

(f) If such judgment has been made in defiance of the regular procedures required for the trial of a case.

(g) If enforcement of such judgment would be contrary to public order.

4. Procedure for Enforcement of Foreign Judgement in Nepal

Step 1: Submission of Application to the Concerned High Court

The foreign state or party seeking recognition or enforcement of a civil judgment from a foreign court in Nepal must submit an application to the concerned High Court. The application must be accompanied by the following documents:

  • Full text of the certified judgment.
  • Originals or certified copies of documents proving that the judgment was made in absentia and that due process was served on the absent party.
  • All documents demonstrating that the judgment meets the requirements.
  • A copy of the judgment translated into Nepalese, certified by the relevant diplomatic or consular representative or an authorized translator.

Step 2: Evaluation of the Application by the High Court

Upon receiving the application and accompanying documents, the concerned High Court reviews them. If the judgment made by the foreign court meets certain criteria, the High Court proceeds with recognizing the judgment.

Step 3: Criteria of Recognition

The judgment must have been issued by a competent court with appropriate jurisdiction. It must be enforceable in the country where it was issued. The judgment must have become final and not subject to review according to the laws of the issuing country.

Step 4: Implementation by the Concerned District Court

If the High Court determines the judgment is enforceable, it instructs the concerned District Court to enforce it. The District Court executes the judgment as if it were its own.

5. Conclusion

The enforcement of foreign judgments in Nepal is governed by a structured legal framework and procedural guidelines outlined by the Mutual Legal Assistance Act, 2070. The enforcement process begins with the submission of an application to the concerned High Court, followed by evaluation based on the established criteria, and eventual implementation by the District Court if deemed enforceable.

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