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Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Comparative Guide –

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1 Legal and judicial framework

1.1 Which legislative and regulatory provisions govern the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in your jurisdiction?

Legislation

Three federal legislative regimes govern the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments in Australia:

  • The Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): This federal act replaced the various state and territory acts concerning the registration and enforcement of foreign judgments and permits the registration of a foreign judgment on the basis of reciprocity.
  • The Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): This concerns, among other things, the registration and enforcement of certain types of New Zealand judgments.
  • The Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Among other things, this permits the commonwealth attorney general to authorise, modify or prohibit the enforcement of certain types foreign judgments.

In all cases, wherever a foreign judgment has been registered or recognised in any Australian jurisdiction, it may be enforced in all other Australia jurisdictions via the Service and Execution of Process Act 1992 (Cth).

1.2 Which bilateral and multilateral instruments on the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments have effect in your jurisdiction?

Multilateral treaties: Australia is not a party to any multilateral treaties concerning the recognition of or enforcement of foreign judgments such as the Hague Convention on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters 1971 and the Hague Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Civil or Commercial Matters 2019.

Bilateral treaties: Australia is a party to the Reciprocal Recognition and Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters [1994] ATS 27, which is a bilateral treaty with the United Kingdom. This treaty was implemented via the Foreign Judgments Regulations (Amendment) 1994 (Cth).

Australia is also a party to the Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of New Zealand on Trans-Tasman Court Proceedings and Regulatory Enforcement [2013] ATS 32, which provides the basis for the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth).

1.3 Which courts have jurisdiction to hear applications for the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 6(2) provides that the appropriate court to hear an application for registration is determined by the type of foreign judgment. This will generally be the supreme court of a state or territory, with two exceptions. The first is that where an application concerns a “money judgment” that was given “in proceedings in which a matter for determination arises under the Commerce Act 1986 of New Zealand (other than proceedings in which a matter for determination arises under section 36A, 98H or 99A of that Act)”, it may be heard by either the supreme court of a state or territory or the Federal Court of Australia. The second is that if the application concerns a non-money judgment in respect of these types of proceedings arising under the Commerce Act 1986 (NZ), the application must be made to the Federal Court of Australia. Please see question 2.1 for further details concerning the definition of a ‘money judgment’.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Section 67 provides that the appropriate court to hear an application for registration is determined by the type of New Zealand judgment. This can vary from a “superior Australian court” – which means the Federal Court of Australia, the Family Court of Australia or the supreme court of a state, the Australian Capital Territory, the Northern Territory or Norfolk Island – or an “inferior Australian court”, which means any Australian court that is not the High Court of Australia or a superior Australian court.

The different types of New Zealand judgments that can be registered under the act are summarised below.


  • Civil pecuniary penalty: A New Zealand judgment that imposes a “civil pecuniary penalty” and is not a “New Zealand market proceeding judgment” can be registered in a superior Australian court or an inferior Australian court that has power to impose a civil pecuniary penalty of the same value as the penalty imposed. A “civil pecuniary penalty” means a pecuniary penalty imposed by a court or tribunal in a civil proceeding in relation to a contravention of legislation. A ‘New Zealand market proceeding judgment’ means a judgment given in a New Zealand market proceeding, which is defined in Section 85 to mean a proceeding in the High Court of New Zealand in which:
    • a matter for determination arises under Section 36A, 98H or 99A of the Commerce Act 1986 (NZ);
    • any other kind of relief prescribed by the regulations is sought;
    • an interlocutory order is sought in relation to a proceeding covered by the first two subparagraphs; or
    • enforcement is sought of a judgment given in a proceeding covered by the first two subparagraphs.

  • Criminal fines: A New Zealand judgment that imposes a “regulatory regime criminal fine” and is not a New Zealand market proceeding judgment can be registered in a superior Australian court. A “regulatory regime criminal fine” means a fine for a criminal offence under a provision of New Zealand legislation, being a provision of a kind prescribed by Section 15 of the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Regulation 2012 (Cth).
  • New Zealand market proceeding judgments: A New Zealand market proceeding judgment must be registered in the Federal Court of Australia.
  • All other New Zealand judgments: Any New Zealand judgment that does not impose a civil pecuniary penalty or a regulatory regime criminal fine, or that is a New Zealand market proceeding judgment, may be registered by a superior Australian court or an inferior Australian court that has power to give the relief that is in the judgment.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): This act empowers the commonwealth attorney general to prohibit or limit the enforcement of certain types of foreign judgments. Section 12 provides when certain types of judgments can be recognised and enforced in the Federal Court of Australia. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

Common law: As the common law rules for the recognition of and enforcement of foreign judgments are limited to those for a definite sum of money, the jurisdiction of a court to hear the same is determined by the usual rules. For example, in New South Wales, the Local Court of New South Wales can hear matters in its General Division up to a value of A$20,000. The District Court of New South Wales’ jurisdictional limit is A$750,000; whereas the Supreme Court of New South Wales has jurisdiction to hear matters of any amount.

Equity: There is a line of authority in Australia that stands for the proposition that an Australian court of equity will assist the enforcement of the judgment of a foreign court of equity without necessarily having to recognise the judgment at common law where there is a “sufficient connection between the defendant and the jurisdiction in which the foreign order was made to justify recognition of the foreign court’s order”, as per Independent Trustee Services Ltd v Morris [2010] NSWSC 1218 at [33]. This is considered further at question 2.1. Such an application must be made to one of the state or territory supreme courts, as these have an inherent equitable jurisdiction and also a general jurisdiction as may be necessary for the administration of justice, as per their respective founding legislation.

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?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 10 provides that no proceedings for “the recovery of an amount payable under a judgment” to which the act applies are to be “entertained by a court having jurisdiction in Australia”, except by way of registration under the act. As such, if a foreign judgment can be enforced under the act, it must only be enforced under the same.

The foreign judgment must be a “judgment” within the meaning of Section 3. This includes:

  • a final or interlocutory judgment or order given or made by a court in civil proceedings;
  • a judgment or order given or made by a court in criminal proceedings for the payment of a sum of money in respect of compensation or damages to an injured party; or
  • an award (other than an award given in a dispute of a kind referred to in Paragraph 34(a) of the International Arbitration Act 1974 (Cth) or an award that may be enforced under Section 35(2) of that act) in proceedings on an arbitration conducted in, and under the law applying in, a country, being an award that has become enforceable in a court of that country in the same manner as a judgment or order given by that court.

As per Section 6, the foreign judgment must be a judgment to which Part 2 applies. Section 5 provides the substantive requirements for the applicability of Part 2, which are summarised below:


  • Specification by the governor general: If the governor general is “satisfied” that the enforcement of “money judgments” or “non-money judgments” of Australian courts will be assured a “substantial reciprocity of treatment” in certain foreign courts, the Foreign Judgments Regulations 1992 (Cth) may extend the application of Part 2 to those courts. By way of summary only, these are as follows:
    • Superior courts – certain specified superior courts of Canada, the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, the Falkland Islands, Fiji, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Grenada, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Malawi, Montserrat, Papua New Guinea, Poland, St Helena, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Seychelles, Singapore, the Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tonga, Tuvalu, the United Kingdom and Western Samoa.
    • Inferior courts – specified inferior courts of Canada, Poland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.


  • Money judgments: A “money judgment” must be:

    • an “enforceable money judgment” where money is payable for:
      • an amount which excludes amounts payable in respect of taxes, fines or penalties;
      • an amount payable in respect of New Zealand tax; or
      • an amount payable in respect of “recoverable Papua New Guinea income tax”; and

    • “final and conclusive”, which includes judgments where an appeal may be pending against it or are still subject to appeal.

  • At this time, the Foreign Judgment Regulations do not specify any “non-money judgments” which are enforceable under the act. As such, only money judgments can be enforced under the act.
  • Further requirements: A foreign judgment cannot be registered if, at the date of application for registration, it has been wholly satisfied or it could not be enforced in the country of the original court.

The following types of foreign judgments are excluded from the scope of Part 2 of the act:

  • a judgment given by a foreign court before the regulations extend the application of the act to judgment given by that court;
  • a judgment given by a superior court on appeal from a judgment given by an inferior court, unless the judgment of the inferior court is a judgment to which Part 2 applies; and
  • a judgment given by a court of New Zealand.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Section 65 provides that a “registrable NZ judgment” cannot be enforced in Australia unless it is registered under the act and cannot be enforced in Australia by any other means.

Section 66 and the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Regulation 2012 (Cth) define the types of New Zealand judgments that are a “registrable NZ judgment”. These are summarised below:

  • New Zealand court civil proceeding: A final and conclusive judgment that is given in a civil proceeding by a New Zealand court.

  • NZ tribunal civil proceeding: A final and conclusive judgment that:
    • is given in a civil proceeding by a New Zealand tribunal that is prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations; or
    • is of a kind prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations that:
    • is not made in connection with the performance of an adjudicative function;
    • is not enforceable without an order of a court; or
    • imposes a civil pecuniary penalty.


  • New Zealand court criminal proceeding – compensation: A final and conclusive judgment that:
    • is given in a criminal proceeding by a New Zealand court; and
    • consists wholly of a requirement to pay an injured party a sum of money by way of compensation, damages or reparation.


  • New Zealand court criminal proceeding – regulatory regime criminal fine: A final and conclusive judgment that:
    • is given in a criminal proceeding by a New Zealand court;
    • consists wholly of the imposition of a “regulatory regime criminal fine”; and
    • meets the conditions (if any) of a kind prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations.


  • New Zealand Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act or Evidence Act: A final and conclusive order made under the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (NZ) or the Evidence Act 2006 (NZ) by a New Zealand court or tribunal, being an order for the payment of expenses incurred:
    • by a witness in complying with a subpoena served on the witness in Australia under Division 3 of Part 5 of the act; or
    • in connection with appearing remotely from Australia in a New Zealand proceeding under Division 3 of Part 6 of the act.


  • New Zealand market proceeding: A “NZ market proceeding judgment” as per Section 85(2) of the act.
  • Reciprocal enforcement: A judgment registered in a New Zealand court under the Reciprocal Enforcement of Judgments Act 1934 (NZ).

A foreign judgment cannot be a “registrable NZ judgment” if the judgment falls into any of the categories listed below.


  • Excluded matters: The judgment relates to an “excluded matter”, which includes:
    • the dissolution of a marriage;

    • the enforcement of:
      • an obligation under Australian law to maintain a spouse or a de facto partner (within the meaning of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901 (Cth));
      • an obligation under New Zealand law to maintain a spouse, a civil union partner (within the meaning of the Civil Union Act 2004 (NZ)) or a de facto partner (within the meaning of the Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (NZ)); or
      • the enforcement of a child support obligation.

  • Prescribed non-money judgment: The judgment is a non-money judgment of a kind prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations.
  • Proceeds of crime legislation: An order issued under the proceeds of crime legislation.
  • Deceased estates: An order relating to the granting of probate or letters of administration or the administration of the estate of a deceased person.
  • Guardianship: An order relating to the guardianship or care of a person who is incapable of managing his or her personal affairs.
  • Incapacity: An order relating to the management of the property of a person who is incapable of managing that property.
  • Children: An order relating to the care, control or welfare of a child.
  • Prescribed civil pecuniary penalty: The judgment imposes a civil pecuniary penalty of a kind prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations.
  • Liable for an offence: An order that, if contravened by a person to whom it is directed, would make the person liable to conviction for an offence in the place where it was made.
  • Prescribed by the regulations: The judgment relates to a matter of a kind prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations, such as Section 16 of the same concerning certain types of orders made by a New Zealand court under the Insolvency (Cross-border) Act 2006 (NZ).

Unlike the usual rules concerning the enforcement of money judgments that comprise taxes or penalties, Section 79 provides that an Australian court may not refuse to enforce, or delay, limit or prohibit the enforcement of, a “registered New Zealand judgment” on any of the following grounds listed below.

  • Enforcement of public law: Enforcing the judgment would involve the direct or indirect enforcement in Australia of a New Zealand public law.
  • New Zealand tax: New Zealand tax is payable under the judgment.
  • Civil pecuniary penalty or regulatory regime criminal fine: The judgment imposes a “civil pecuniary penalty” or a “regulatory regime criminal fine”.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): This act empowers the commonwealth attorney general to prohibit or limit the enforcement of certain types of foreign judgments. These can include judgments relating to:

  • the giving of evidence or the production of documents as per Section 6;
  • “antitrust proceedings” as per Section 9;
  • costs in antitrust proceedings as per Section 11;
  • enforcement of judgments under reciprocal agreement as per Section 12; or
  • an order requiring or prohibiting an act, or for something to be done or conduct in Australia refrained from, as per Section 14.

However, there are two major limitations to this power. First, in most cases, the commonwealth attorney general must be “satisfied” that it is in the national interest, or that the assumption of jurisdiction by the foreign court or the manner of exercise of jurisdiction by the foreign court would be contrary to international law or inconsistent with international comity or international practice. In the case of proceedings covered by Section 9, the attorney general must also be satisfied that the taking of an action by a “foreign authority”, or the manner of taking that action, would be contrary to international law or inconsistent with international comity or international practice.

Second, the Commonwealth Parliament’s legislative competence is limited by the powers conferred upon it under Section 51 of the Constitution. As such, the proceedings must relate to one of the categories mentioned in Section 5 of the act.

Section 12 provides that where arrangements have been made by agreement with a foreign country, the attorney general can declare by legislative instrument that the foreign judgment can be enforced in Australia. However, as the attorney general has never made such a declaration, these provisions have never been employed. As such, and by way of brief summary only, the arrangements would concern the recovery of sums paid by a defendant under the enforcement of a foreign “antitrust proceeding” to, among other things, recover amounts paid pursuant to an award for “multiple damages”.

Common law: If the foreign judgment cannot be recognised or enforced under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) or the Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth), then the foreign judgment may be susceptible to recognition and enforcement at common law. There are three ways in which a foreign judgment can be recognised and enforced under the common law of Australia:

  • an action in debt;
  • an action in indebitatus assumpsit; or
  • an action on the original cause of action relied upon in the foreign court.

The onus of proof is upon the plaintiff to establish all of the grounds of the chosen cause of action.

A foreign judgment may be recognised and enforced via an action in debt for a liquidated sum arising from the foreign judgment as per RDCW Diamonds Pty Ltd v Da Gloria [2006] NSWSC 450 at [26] and XPlore Technologies Corporation of America v Tough Corp Pty Ltd [2008] NSWSC 1267 at [15].

Historically, actions in debt and indebitatus assumpsit were quite distinct. While the history of these causes of action is beyond the scope of this Q&A, the essence of the distinction as this developed over several hundred years was that an action in debt was for the return of physical money held by the defendant, while indebitatus assumpsit was based on a promise implied by law that the defendant would pay a certain sum to the plaintiff (see further Young v Queensland Trustees Ltd [1956] 99 CLR 560 at 566–568). However, by 1845, English courts accepted that where assumpsit could be pleaded to enforce a judgment, so could an action in debt as per Williams v Jones (1845) 153 ER 262 at 264. By 1883, it had been held that an “action upon a foreign judgment may be treated as an action in either debt or assumpsit: the liability of the defendant arises upon the implied contract to pay the amount of the foreign judgment”, as per Grant v Easton (1883) 13 QBD 302 at 303. This passage was explicitly adopted and approved by Justice Buckley of the Chancery Division in In re Flynn, decd (No 2) [1969] 2 Ch 403. A similar conclusion was reached by the English Court of Appeal in Berliner Industriebank Aktiengesellschaft v Jost [1971] 3 WLR 61 at 70D, stating that “An action in this country upon a foreign judgment for an ascertained sum is an action in debt or assumpsit, which is an action “in personam“, the court citing Williams v Jones.

There does not appear to be any Australian authority that overturns or distinguishes these decisions. As such, it appears that under the common law of Australia, a foreign judgment can be enforced by way of an action in debt or via indebitatus assumpsit.

Both causes of action have four essential requirements, which are summarised in Doe v Howard [2015] VSC 75 at [56].

International jurisdiction: First, the foreign court must have exercised a jurisdiction that Australian courts will recognise which has also been called “international jurisdiction”. Buckley LJ in Emanuel v Symon [1907] 1 KN 302 at 309 stated that

In actions in personam there are five cases in which the Courts of this country will enforce a foreign judgment: (1) Where the defendant is a subject of the foreign country in which the judgment has been obtained; (2) where he was resident in the foreign country when the action began; (3) where the defendant in the character of plaintiff has selected the forum in which he is afterwards sued; (4) where he has voluntarily appeared; and (5) where he has contracted to submit himself to the forum in which the judgment was obtained.


This has been applied in Australia as per Liu v Ma[2017] VSC 810 at [6], in support of the proposition that a foreign court can exercise jurisdiction based on the citizenship of the defendant. See also Xu v Wang [2019] VSC 269 at [77].

In Central Petroleum Limited v Geoscience Resource Recovery LLC [2017] QSC 223 at [58], the court considered the modern Australian position regarding “jurisdiction in the international sense”. Such jurisdiction can arise by “the presence or residence of the defendant in the jurisdiction of the foreign court” or by voluntary submission by the defendant to that jurisdiction. An Australian court must make its own determination regarding jurisdiction and at [59], the court quoted Staughton LJ in Jet Holdings Inc v Patel [1990] 1 QB 335 at 344 where he stated that “the foreign court’s decision on its own jurisdiction is neither conclusive nor relevant. If the foreign court had no jurisdiction in the eyes of English law, any conclusion it may have reached as to its own jurisdiction is of no value”.

However, the common law position regarding the voluntary submission to jurisdiction is altered by Section 11 of the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), which provides that a foreign court does not have jurisdiction merely because the “judgment debtor” entered an appearance in the proceedings before the foreign court or only participated in those proceedings to the extent as necessary to protect or obtain the release of property seized or threatened with seizure or subject to an order restraining it disposition or disposal, to contest the jurisdiction of the court or to invite the court to exercise its discretion not to exercise jurisdiction in the proceedings.

Final and conclusive: Second, a foreign judgment must be final and conclusive, in that it must “put an end to the particular proceeding pending between the parties, and must settle once and for all the controversy between them” as per Doe v Howard at [67]. The foreign judgment is conclusive as long as it stands, even if it can be altered, varied or discharged on the basis of fresh evidence, or if it can be reversed, appealed or set aside as per Ainslie v Ainslie (1927) 39 CLR 381 at 388. Similarly, in Benefit Strategies Group Inc v Prider [2007] SASC 250, the court stated that a foreign judgment is presumed to be conclusive “so long as it stands” at [11], citing Venquelin v Bouard (1863) 15 CB (NS) 341 at [12] and Ainslie v Ainslie at 388 and 410. Default judgments may also be held to be final and conclusive as per Schnabel v Lui [2002] NSWSC 1184 at [134]–[135] and RDCW Diamonds v Da Gloria at [38]. Furthermore, “brevity or apparent lack of analysis necessarily defeats” a plea of res judicata as per Telesto Investments Ltd v UBS AG [2013] NSWSC 503 at [188] – [189] and [201].

Additionally, a foreign judgment will support a finding of res judicata as per Trawl Industries of Australia Pty Ltd (in liquidation) v Effem Foods Pty Ltd (1992) 108 ALR 335 at 347–40; Spirits International BV v Federal Treasury Enterprise (FKP) Sojuzplodoimport [2011] FCAFC 69 at [45]; and Telesto Investments Ltd v UBS AG [2013] NSWSC 503 at 185. As such, an Australian court will not permit the parties to “agitate the merits of the matter before the foreign court, at least to the extent that it is a matter with which the foreign court was capable of dealing”, as per Xplore Technologies v Tough Corp at [15] and RDCW Diamonds v Da Gloria at [26], [28] –32]. See also Ainslie v Ainslie at 402.

Identity of the parties: Third, there must be an “identity of the parties”, which means that the parties to the original cause of action are the same as those in the common law recognition and enforcement action. See Benefit Strategies v Prider at [8] and Bhushan Steel Ltd v Severstal Export GmbH [2012] NSWSC 583 at [146] – [147].

Definite sum: Fourth, the foreign judgment must be for a definite, liquidated sum of money. For example, while the sum can include costs and interest, it cannot be subject to a future deduction for costs or a future addition for interest. See Benefit Strategies v Prider at [8] and Bhushan Steel v Severstal at [146]-[147].

Further considerations In addition to the requirements above, other factors may arise if the original cause of action is to be relitigated. First, while the common law of Australia now holds that a foreign judgment is conclusive proof of the matters to which it relates, foreign courts are still not held to be “courts of the records” and as such, the doctrine of res judicata does not apply as per Xplore Technologies v Tough Corp at [16], citing Carl Zeiss Stiftung v Rayner & Keeler Ltd (No 2) [1967] 1 AC 853, among others. As such, there is no merger of the original cause of action in the foreign judgment. However, the defendant will usually be estopped from raising defences in the rehearing that were raised in the original hearing and were not successful.

Second, and more importantly for plaintiffs, limitation periods on the original cause of action will run from the underlying events. As such, it may be possible that a plaintiff is stature-barred from moving on the original cause of action, but moving on the foreign judgment in debt or indebitatus assumpsit is still permitted.

Three vitiating factors: Irrespective of the cause of action relied upon by the plaintiff, the common law of Australia will not recognise or enforce a foreign judgment where the foreign judgment:

  • was obtained by or infected by fraud;
  • is manifestly contrary to or incompatible with Australian public policy; or
  • arises from a court process that is manifestly contrary to or incompatible with Australian concepts of procedural fairness or natural justice.

As regards the first factor, it is a long-standing proposition of Australian law that a foreign judgment can be set aside for fraud, as per Ainslie v Ainslie at 402. However, while new evidence was required to set aside a domestic judgment, the same was not true of foreign judgments. As such, where a party seeks to set aside a judgment of an Australian court on the ground of fraud, among other things, “newly discovered facts” must be adduced that were not available at the time of the original hearing as per Kirby P in Wentworth v Rogers (No 5) (1986) 6 NSWLR 534 at 538–539. However, due to the legacy of the English decision of Abouloff v Oppenheimer & Co (1882) 10 QBD 295 at 300–305, Australian courts were bound to effectively permit a rehearing of the foreign case where fraud was alleged. However, this decision was not followed in Keele v Findley (1990) 21 NSWLR 444, as Chief Justice Rogers of the Commercial Division held at 457G–458D that Abouloff was incorrectly decided and that the approach to addressing allegations of fraud should be the same for domestic and foreign judgments. This approach was followed in XPlore Technologies v Tough Corp at [19], but was not adopted in Close v Arnott (Unreported, Common Law Division, 21 November 1997, BC 9706194) or Yoon v Song (2000) 158 FLR 295 at [22]. However, the approach in Keele v Findley was approved in obiter by the Full Court of the Supreme Court of South Australia in Benefit Strategies Group Inc v Prider (2005) 91 SASR 544 at 558–559 [41] and by the NSW Court of Appeal in Quarter Enterprises Pty Ltd v Allardyce Lumber Company Pty Ltd (2014) 85 NSWLR 404 at 432 [136] to 432 [137].

Ultimately, the law of England changed in Altimo Holdings and Investment Ltd v Kyrgz Mobile Tel Limited [2011] 4 All ER 1027 at 1057 [115], so that new evidence would be required for both domestic and foreign judgments. While this change is not binding on Australian courts today, this further reinforced the adoption of the Keele approach in Doe v Howard at [127]–[131]; and this was followed in subsequent Victorian decisions such as Xu v Wang at [84]. As such, despite the lack of a clear case from any Australian intermediate court of appeal, it appears that Keele v Findley is correct for the purposes of Australian law.

As regards the second factor, recent authorities – such as Xu v Wang at [90] – indicate that it is difficult to prevent the enforcement of a properly recognised foreign judgment on the grounds of incompatibility with Australian public policy. Examples at [91] include:

  • where the content of a foreign law was “repugnant”, such as by permitting slavery; or
  • enforcement would jeopardise Australia’s national interest or lead to an “unacceptably unjust result”, citing De Santis v Russo (2001) 27 Fam LR 414 at [21].

Another example is where the court determines that the foreign judgment is a “foreign penal order” in the nature of a punishment as per Doe v Howard at [135]–[136] citing Islamic Republic of Iran v The Barakat Galleries Ltd [2009] QB 22 at 53 [106] with approval. See also Doe v Howard at [138], citing Attorney General of New Zealand v Ortiz [1984] AC 1 at 20 regarding penal and revenue laws and from [139]–[146], especially [145]. See further Huntington v Attrill [1893] AC 150 and Attorney-General (UK) v Heinemann Publishers Australia Pty Ltd (No 2) (1988) 165 CLR 30.

As regards the third factor, a finding of a foreign court of fact or law cannot be impeached by an Australian court unless it is obtained by fraud or “the foreign law, or at least some part of the proceedings in the foreign Court, is repugnant to natural justice…and…it is repugnant to natural justice if a decision has been ‘arrived at in a mode which is according to our notions unjust‘ or unless it ‘offend against English views of substantial justice‘”, as per Justice Higgins of the High Court of Australia in Ainslie v Ainslie at 402. An example is in Boele v Norsemeter Holding AS [2002] NSWCA 363 at [28], where the notice provisions of a foreign court will be a consideration, but not determinative in determining whether due notice has been given so as to satisfy Australian concepts of natural justice. For example, it would not be acceptable for a respondent to receive no notice of the proceeding or have no opportunity to be heard, as per Terrell v Terrell (1971) VR 155 at 157.

Equity: There is a line of authority in Australia that stands for the proposition that an Australian court of equity will assist the enforcement of the judgment of a foreign court of equity without necessarily having to recognise the judgment at common law where there is a “sufficient connection between the defendant and the jurisdiction in which the foreign order was made to justify recognition of the foreign court’s order”, as per Independent Trustee Services Ltd v Morris [2010] NSWSC 1218 at [33].

The first key authority regarding an Australian court exercising its equitable jurisdiction to assist in the enforcement of the judgment of a foreign court of equity appears to be the judgment of Justice McPherson, as he was then, of the Queensland Supreme Court in White v Verkouille (1989) 2 Qld R 191. In summary, the Second District Court of Nevada had appointed a receiver to pursue the enforcement of certain outstanding amounts. The receiver then attempted to enforce the Nevadan court’s judgment and, among other things, seek the appointment of auxiliary receivers in Queensland. Drawing on the English cases of Penn v Lord Baltimore (1750) 1 Ves Sen 444, Houlditch v Marquess of Donegal (1834) 2 Cl & F 470; 6 ER 1232, and Schemmer v Property Resources Ltd [1975] Ch 273, the court stated at 194 that: “Equity lends its aid to the enforcement of a foreign judgment without requiring as a prerequisite that it be made a judgment of this Court…[where] the foundation of the assistance afforded by courts of equity in cases such as this is the jurisdiction to act in personam against the defendant.”

It continued at 195:

“the court must be satisfied of a sufficient connexion between the defendant and the jurisdiction in which the foreign receiver has been appointed as to justify recognition of the foreign court’s order. In my opinion that correctly states the principle upon which this Court acting in its equitable jurisdiction will aid in the enforcement of a foreign judgment.”


The court ultimately permitted the appointment of the auxiliary receivers and the enforcement of other orders against the defendants, despite not having recognised the underlying judgment. Subsequently, Justice Campbell, as he was then, of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in Davis v Turning Properties [2005] NSWSC 742 relied upon White v Verkouille at [16] to [20] and [35] to conclude that the court had the power to issue freezing orders in New South Wales to support similar orders made by the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. The court also noted the following at [35]:

“As well, the ordinary course of administration of justice has long included a court making certain of its remedies available in aid of proceedings in another court – the old equitable remedies of a Bill of discovery, a Bill to perpetuate testimony, and a Bill to take testimony de bene esse pending a suit (Story, Commentaries on Equity Jurisprudence 13th ed 1886 para [1480] ff) provide examples of remedies being available in Chancery in aid of proceedings in another court before the other court has heard a suit. After another court has heard and decided a suit, the title of a foreign appointed administrator of an insolvent estate to movables is recognised in Australia under the general law (Australian Mutual Provident Society v Gregory (1908) 5 CLR 615), and can provide a sufficient basis for an appointment of a receiver of immoveables within the jurisdiction (In Re Kooperman (1928) B & C R 49).”


Both White v Verkouille and Davis v Turning Properties were relied upon by Acting Justice Bryson, as he was then, in Independent Trustee Services Ltd v Morris [2010] NSWSC 1218. As per [29] of the judgment, one order of the High Court of Justice of England and Wales was recognised by the court as a money judgment; whereas the other orders, including a declaration, could not be recognised on that basis. As per [19], the court was presented with the option to hear the underlying cause of action, but considered this unnecessary. As per [30] to [36], the court adopted the approach taken by Justice McPherson in White v Verkouille, noting that “His Honour made a characteristically careful review of instances in case law where equity courts had acted in this way”, and that he was “fortified by observations of Justice Campbell in Davis v Turning Properties Pty Ltd“. As such, the types of equitable remedies which an Australian court of equity will extend do not appear to be closed.

Inherent jurisdiction of the court: In the specific case of freezing orders, a separate but related line of authority has arisen which now holds that the supreme courts of the states and territories can, in their inherent jurisdiction, make freezing orders in aid of foreign judgments that are prospective and cannot yet be registered under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth). This was confirmed by the High Court of Australia in PT Bayan Resources TBK v BCBC Singapore Pte Ltd [2015] HCA 36; 258 CLR 1 at [2] per the majority. As such, where the court can be convinced that the future enforcement of a foreign judgment in that court may be frustrated or vitiated, freezing orders may be made even where that foreign judgment is not yet final and therefore cannot immediately be registered or recognised in the usual way.

2.2 Must a foreign judgment be final and binding before it can be enforced?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. As per Section 5(4), a foreign “enforceable money judgment” that is eligible for registration must be “final and conclusive” before it can be registered and then enforced. Furthermore, as per Section 5(5), this includes judgments which are under appeal or are still subject to appeal.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. As per Section 66(1), a “registrable NZ judgment” must be “final and conclusive” before it can be registered and then enforced. Furthermore, as per Section 66(3), this includes judgments where an appeal has not been finally determined or are still subject to appeal.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Yes. While the provisions of this act do not explicitly specify that the foreign judgment must be final and binding, this would seem necessary due to the types of foreign judgments that can be registered under the act.

Common law: Yes. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

Equity: Yes. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

2.3 Is a foreign judgment enforceable if it is subject to appeal in the foreign jurisdiction?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes, a foreign judgment is enforceable even if the judgment is under appeal or still subject to appeal until it is set aside under Section 7(2)(vii). However, Section 8 of the same provides that if a foreign judgment is registered and the relevant court is satisfied that the judgment debtor has appealed the judgment, or “is entitled and intends to appeal” the same, the court may stay enforcement of the judgment until the final determination of the appeal, until a specified day or for a specified period. As a part of the stay, the court can require that the person brings the appeal on a specified day or within a specified period. Furthermore, the court can also impose other conditions as it thinks fit, such as giving security.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. Section 66 provides that a “registrable NZ judgment” must be “final and conclusive” before it can be registered and then enforced; this includes judgments where an appeal has not been finally determined or are still subject to appeal. However, Section 76 provides that a “liable person” can apply that enforcement of the judgment not be commenced until a specified time or event, or be stayed for a specified period so that it may appeal the New Zealand judgment. This delay must be subject to the condition that the liable person has filed an appeal which it is prosecuting expeditiously, and may be subject to any other conditions that the Australia court considers appropriate, such as giving security.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Yes. However, Section 12(11) provides that upon the application of a person against who a judgment is registered, enforcement can be suspended where an appeal is pending in the foreign court or where the person is entitled and intends to appeal in the same.

Common law: Yes. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

Equity: Yes, to the extent that the relevant cases all involved final foreign judgments and as such, the scope of an Australian court of equity to assist in the case of a foreign interlocutory judgment is unclear. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

2.4 What is the limitation period for making an application for recognition and enforcement?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): As per Section 6, the judgment creditor may apply to the appropriate court to register the judgment within six years of:

  • the date of the judgment; or
  • where the judgment has been appealed, the date of the last judgment in those proceedings.

There is no provision in the act for this period to be extended.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): As per Section 67, the application for registration must be made within:

  • six years of the date on which the judgment is given;
  • where the judgment has been appealed, six years of the date of the last judgment in those proceedings; or
  • any longer period that an Australian court considers appropriate.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): As per Section 12(2), the application for registration must be made within three years of the date of the making of the order by the Attorney-General. There is no provision in the Act for this period to be extended.

Common law and equity: Each jurisdiction in Australia has its own statute of limitations. For example, Section 14 of the Limitation Act 1969 (NSW) imposes a general limitation period of six years. In the case of foreign judgments, Section 17(2) provides that the period is 12 years. Furthermore, in the case of equity, equitable doctrines and maxims such as “those who seek equity must do equity” and laches may also apply in specific circumstances.

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?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes and yes. As per Section 6(7), once a foreign judgment has been registered under the act, it may then be enforced as a judgment of the court in which it was registered.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes and yes. As per Section 74, a “registered New Zealand judgment” has the same force and effect, and may give rise to the same proceedings for enforcement, as if the judgment had been given by the Australian court in which it is registered.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Yes and yes. As per Section 12(7), a registered judgment has the same force and effect as if it were a final judgment given in the registering court.

Common law and equity: No, insofar as the same court that recognises the foreign judgment would usually make further orders regarding enforcement. However, this could vary from case to case.

3.2 What is the formal process for recognition and enforcement?

Federal acts and court rules: As the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) and the Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth) are all federal acts, the same substantive legal rules contained in each pertaining to foreign judgments will be uniform in all Australian jurisdictions. Similarly, as there is only one common law of Australia, the approach used to recognise and enforce foreign judgments in common law and equity is also substantively the same. However, each jurisdiction has developed its own specific rules and procedures for registering, recognising and enforcing foreign judgments. As such, care must be taken to ensure that the specific requirements of a given jurisdiction are satisfied.

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 6(3) provides that where the requirements of Act and the relevant rules of court are satisfied, a foreign judgment must be registered under the Act. The further requirements imposed by the relevant court rules are similar, but vary across the Australian jurisdictions. For example, Part 53 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) specifies that the proceedings for registration under the act are to be commenced by summons and can be decided in the absence of the judgment debtor and the public, and sets out the evidence that must be included in the supporting affidavit. These rules also specify that the time for the judgment debtor to apply to set aside the registration must not, except in exceptional circumstances, be less than 14 days after service of the notice of registration and that service must usually be personal. Further, the judgment creditor must not “take any step” for enforcement of the foreign judgment until either an affidavit of service of the notice of registration is filed or the Supreme Court is otherwise satisfied that the requirements of the rules as to service of the notice of registration have been satisfied.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Once an application has been made under Section 67, an Australian court must register a “registrable NZ judgment” in that court in accordance with Part 7 of the same. Sections 67(5) and 67(6) and Section 17 of the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Regulation 2012 (Cth) prescribe certain formal requirements, such as:

  • the use of “Form 5”;
  • the possibility to file applications by fax or email where the relevant court permits; and
  • that the application be accompanied by a sealed, certified or otherwise authenticated copy of the New Zealand judgment.

The applicable rules of the court will also specify further requirements.

If the judgment is registered, then notice must be given as per Section 73. The notice must be in the form and manner prescribed by the Trans-Tasman Regulations and must be given within 15 working days of the date of registration or, on application by the “entitled person”, any longer period that the Australian court considers appropriate. However, as per Section 74(2), if notice is not given to all “liable persons”, then the effect of registration is delayed by 45 working days and therefore the New Zealand judgment cannot be enforced during this period.

Further requirements are imposed by the relevant court rules. For example, Rule 32.3 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) requires that an application under the act be made by way of summons and a supporting affidavit. Rule 32.8(1) prohibits enforcement of a registered judgment in the 45-working-day period unless the plaintiff files an affidavit that states that the notice has been given. Rule 32.9 provides that an application for an extension of time to give notice must be made by a notice of motion with a supporting affidavit covering matters such as the grounds relied upon, the material facts and why notice was not given within time.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Section 12(3) provides that an application made under Section 12(2) and any relevant regulations must be registered. However, it appears that no such application has ever been made.

Common law and equity: Proceedings for recognition and enforcement are governed by the specific rules of each court. For example, seeking recognition of a foreign judgment at common law in New South Wales would usually be done by filing a statement of claim in the Common Law Division of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, whereas an equitable action would usually be commenced by way of summons in the Equity Division of the same.

Applicable court rules: The relevant court rules and practice notes are as follows below.


  • Australian Capital Territory:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Part 3.8 Foreign judgments – reciprocal enforcement” of the Court Procedures Rules 2006 (ACT); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Part 6.10A Trans-Tasman proceedings” of the Court Procedures Rules 2006 (ACT).


  • Commonwealth:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Division 41.6 – Reciprocal enforcement of judgments under Foreign Judgments Act 1991” of the Federal Court Rules 2011 (Cth); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Division 34.4 – Trans-Tasman proceedings – general” of the same.


  • New South Wales:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Part 53 Matters arising under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 of the Commonwealth” of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Part 32 Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Commonwealth)” of the same.


  • Northern Territory:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Chapter 9 – Registration of foreign judgments” of the Supreme Court Rules 1987 (NT); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – no rules appear to exist.


  • Queensland:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Chapter 20A – Reciprocal enforcement of foreign judgments” of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (Qld); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Chapter 14 – Particular proceedings, Part 6 – Trans-Tasman proceedings” of the same.


  • South Australia:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Rule 346 – Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth)” of the Supreme Court Civil Rules 2006 (SA); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Rule 347 – Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth)” of the same.


  • Tasmania:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Part 28 – Registration of judgments” of the Supreme Court Rules 2000 (Tas); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Division 7 – Proceedings under the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Commonwealth)” of “Part 32 – Proceedings under particular statutes” of the same.


  • Victoria:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) –and “Order 11 – Registration of judgments under Foreign Judgments Act 1991 of the Commonwealth” of the Supreme Court (Miscellaneous Civil Proceedings) Rules 2018 (Vic);
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Order 7A—Trans-Tasman proceedings 48” of the Supreme Court (General Civil Procedure) Rules 2015 (Vic); and
    • see also Practice Note SC Gen 15 – Enforcement of Foreign Judgments.


  • Western Australia:
    • Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) – “Order 44A – Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Commonwealth) rules” of the Supreme Court Rules 1971 (WA); and
    • Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) – “Order 39A – Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Commonwealth) rules” of the same.

3.3 What documents are required in support of an application for recognition and enforcement?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 6(3) provides that, subject to the act, the required proof is to be prescribed by the applicable rules of the court in which registration is sought. For example, Rule 53.3 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) requires that evidence to support the application include the following:

  • the judgment or a verified or certified or otherwise duly authenticated copy of the judgment;
  • if the judgment is not in English, a translation of the judgment into English, certified by a notary public or authenticated by evidence;
  • evidence showing which, if only some, provisions of the judgment are the subject of the application;
  • if it is a money judgment, evidence showing the amount originally payable under the judgment;
  • evidence showing that the Supreme Court is the appropriate court under Section 6(1) of the Act;
  • evidence showing the name and trade or business, and the usual or last known residential or business addresses, of the judgment creditor and judgment debtor;
  • evidence showing that the judgment creditor is entitled to enforce the judgment;

  • evidence showing that:
    • at the date of the application, the judgment can be enforced by execution in the country of the original court; and
    • if the judgment were registered in the Supreme Court, the registration would not be liable to be set aside under Section 7 of the act;


  • if interest is payable by the law of the country of the original court on any money which is payable under the judgment, evidence showing:
    • the rate of interest;
    • the amount of interest which has become due under the judgment up to the time of application for registration; and
    • the daily amount of interest which, subject to any future payment on account of the judgment, will accrue after the date of the application;

  • evidence showing the extent to which the judgment is unsatisfied; and
  • such other evidence as may be required having regard to any regulations made under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth).

Furthermore, Rule 53(3) provides that the evidence required in sub-rules (1)(g)–(j) may be evidence to the best of the information or belief of the deponent or witness giving the evidence.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): The different court rules will specify what documents or evidence is required to accompany the application. For example, Rule 32.3(3) of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) requires that the supporting affidavit that accompanies the application state “the material facts on which the plaintiff relies that are necessary to give the defendant fair notice of the case to be made against the defendant at the hearing of the proceeding”.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): While Section 12(9A) provides that the Federal Court of Australia may make rules regarding an application for registration of a foreign judgment under the act, no rules are currently in force and as the commonwealth attorney general has never made the requisite declarations, no application has ever been made.

Common law and equity: Some jurisdictions will provide guidance regarding what evidence is required, but in lieu of that, the usual rules of evidence apply. As such, evidence concerning the four essential requirements described in question 2.1 and any vitiating factors will be mandatory.

3.4 What fees are payable for recognition and enforcement?

As the various court rules will specify the type of initiating process that must be used when applying for the registration, recognition or enforcement of a foreign judgment, those rules will also specify the relevant fees. For example, as an application for registration under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) in New South Wales will usually be made by way of summons, the Supreme Court will charge A$1,143.00 for an applicant that is a natural person or A$3,128.00 for an applicant that is a corporation.

3.5 Is the applicant required to provide security for costs?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): An applicant is not required to provide security for costs under the act. Security for costs can be required under Section 8(4) where a “judgment debtor” seeks a stay of the enforcement of a registered judgment.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): An applicant is not required to provide security for costs under the act. Security for costs can be required under Section 76(2)(b) where a “liable person” seeks a stay of the enforcement of a registered judgment.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): An applicant is not required to provide security for costs under the act. The act does not refer to security for costs explicitly, but Section 12(11) does provide that if a court stays the proceedings so that an appeal can be instituted or heard in respect of the foreign judgment in the foreign country, other terms can be imposed as it thinks fit.

Common law and equity: The usual principles embodied in the various court rules will apply. As such, an order for security for costs will be more likely if the plaintiff is a corporation or foreign resident.

3.6 How long does it usually take to obtain a declaration of enforceability?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) and Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): If the application for the registration of a foreign judgment or a New Zealand judgment under their respective acts is not contested, and if all of the relevant evidence has been provided, the process will usually be done “on the papers” in the judicial officer’s chambers. In this case, the registration should be completed within one week to one month of filing of the originating process. However, two factors will considerably influence the time taken. The first is the exact type of judicial officer that will make the determination. Certain types of administrative applications will be delegated to registrars of the court, as opposed to a judge, depending on the specific delegation of powers given to the former. For example, in the case of the Supreme Court of New South Wales, a registrar may decide an application for the registration of a foreign judgment under the Foreign Judgments Act and, where it is not contested, the setting aside of a registered judgment or the issue of certificates for judgments obtained in Australian courts. As such, if the setting aside of a registered judgment is contested or if another issue arises under the act, the matter will need to be referred to a judge for determination.

The second factor is that if required or desirable evidence is omitted, the relevant judicial officer may have further queries, which could lead to further requests for information or a directions hearing.

However, if the matter is contested, then the time taken will depend on the complexity of the relevant issues, the resultant number of hearing days required and the availability of judges to hear the matter. In the supreme courts of the states and territories, duty judges are available during usual business hours for usual business and, when necessary, after hours for genuinely urgent applications. As such, relatively simple hearings of no longer than a few hours in length can usually be completed on the day the matter is in for directions. However, where a longer trial is necessary, the matter will be heard according to the availability of judges to hear the application and this will vary between jurisdictions.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): As the commonwealth attorney general has never made the requisite declarations, no application has ever been made.

Common law and equity: This will depend on the complexity of the matter and the availability of judges in the relevant jurisdiction. While simpler matters may be determined on the papers, many other matters will be determined ex parte. As such, the length will be directly proportional to the combination of the defendant’s ability and will to contest the proceedings based on the facts of the case. As a general rule, simpler matters should be resolved in no more than a few months.

3.7 Can the applicant seek injunctive relief while the process is ongoing?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. Section 7(10) prohibits action being taken to “enforce a registered judgment” during the period fixed by the court in which the registration may be challenged or, if such an application has been made, until the application has been finally determined. “Enforcement” in respect of money judgments is defined in Section 3 as “enforcement by execution”. As such, the foreign judgment could not be directly enforced as a debt against the defendant. However, there would be no bar on the applicant seeking relevant interim relief on the basis of evidence that may be related to the foreign judgment or underpins it. For example, freezing orders under Rule 25.11 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW) may be sought on the usual basis if the applicant can show, among other things, that the defendant may dissipate assets to frustrate any possible eventual enforcement of the foreign judgment, even if the registration is only prospective. See also PT Bayan Resources TBK v BCBC Singapore Pte Ltd [2015] HCA 36; 258 CLR 1 at [2] per the majority and question 2.1 for further details.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. By analogy, the applicant could seek injunctive or other interim relief in respect of a prospective judgment, as per Bayan Resources TBK v BCBC Singapore Pte Ltd [2015] HCA 36; 258 CLR 1 at [2] per the majority.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Theoretically, the applicant could seek injunctive relief and other interim measures. However, as the commonwealth attorney general has never made the requisite declarations, no application has ever been made.

Common law and equity: Yes, the applicant can seek injunctive relief and other interim measures.

4 Defences

4.1 On what grounds can the defendant challenge recognition and enforcement of a foreign judgment?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): When an application is made to register a foreign judgment under the act, Section 6(4) requires the court to state a period within which an application can be made to have the registration set aside. This period can be specified by the rules of the relevant court and, for example, in New South Wales it will usually be at least 14 days. Section 6(5) provides that this period can be extended by the court. As per Sywak v Sywak [2009] NSWSC 1393 at [25], a court will have an unfettered discretion to extend time as may be necessary, governed by “the requirement that the Court do justice between the parties”. This application can be in the court in which registration is sought or as per Section 7(1), may alternatively be in another Australia court, where the registration of the foreign judgment was registered in it under the Service and Execution of Process Act 1992 (Cth).

Section 7 specifies several grounds where if the court is satisfied that one or more exist, the registration of a foreign judgment must be set aside, as follows:

  • Act no longer applies to the judgment: The foreign judgment is not, or has ceased to be, a judgment to which Part 2 of the act applies. For example, Part 2 will not apply if the relevant regulations are changed and a court or country is removed.
  • Registration for incorrect amount: The foreign judgment was registered for an amount greater than the amount payable under it at the date of registration.
  • Contravention of the act: The judgment was registered in contravention of the provisions of the act.
  • No jurisdiction: The courts of the country of the original court had no jurisdiction in the circumstances of the case. The exact circumstances in which a foreign court will be found to have had no jurisdiction are contained in Sections 7(3) to 7(5) and they are specific, complicated and vary between actions in personam versus in rem. For example, the act provides that for actions in personam, a foreign court will be taken to have had jurisdiction if the “judgment debtor voluntarily submitted to the jurisdiction of the original court”. However, the act excludes entering an appearing or participating in the proceedings only to protect or seek the release of property, to contest the jurisdiction of the court or to invite the court in its discretion not to exercise jurisdiction in the proceedings.
  • No notice: The judgment debtor, being the defendant in the proceedings in the original court, did not (whether or not process had been duly served on the judgment debtor in accordance with the law of the country of the original court) receive notice of those proceedings in sufficient time to enable it to defend the proceedings and did not appear.
  • Fraud: The foreign judgment was obtained by fraud.
  • Reversed on appeal: The foreign judgment was reversed on appeal or otherwise set aside in the courts of the country of the original court.
  • Incorrect applicant: The rights under the judgment are not vested in the person by which the application for registration was made.
  • Judgment discharged: The foreign judgment has been discharged.
  • Judgment wholly satisfied: The foreign judgment has been wholly satisfied.
  • Contrary to public policy: Enforcement of the foreign judgment, not being a judgment under which an amount of money is payable in respect of New Zealand tax, would be contrary to public policy.
  • Previous decision: The matter in dispute in the proceedings in the original court had before the date of the judgment in the original court been the subject of a final and conclusive judgment by a court having jurisdiction in the matter.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Section 72 provides that an Australian court must set aside a registered judgment if any of the following below apply:

  • Contrary to public policy: The court is satisfied that enforcement of the judgment would be contrary to public policy in Australia.
  • Contravention of the act: The judgment was registered in contravention of the act.

  • Non-New Zealand court and proceedings in rem: Both of the following apply:
    • The judgment was given in a proceeding whose subject matter was immovable property or was given in a proceeding in rem whose subject matter was movable property; and
    • That property was, at the time of the proceeding in the original court or tribunal, not situated in New Zealand.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Section 12(10) provides that when an application is made to set aside a registered judgment, a partially satisfied judgment may be registered only for the balance. Additionally, Section 12(9) provides that the registration will be set aside if, on application by a person against which the judgment is registered, the court is satisfied that the judgment:

  • is not a judgment in respect of which an order made under Section 12(1) is in force;
  • was registered in contravention of Section 12;
  • has been reversed on appeal or otherwise set aside in the country in which the judgment was obtained; or
  • has, since registration, been wholly satisfied in Australia or in any other country.

Common law and equity: Please see question 2.1.

4.2 What is the limitation period for filing a challenge?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): When an application is made to register a foreign judgment under the act, Section 6(4) requires the court to state a period within which an application can be made to have the registration set aside. This period can be specified by the rules of the relevant court and, for example, in New South Wales it will usually be at least 14 days. Section 6(5) provides that this period can be extended by the court. As per Sywak v Sywak [2009] NSWSC 1393 at [25], a court will have an unfettered discretion to extend time as may be necessary, governed by “the requirement that the Court do justice between the parties”. Please see question 4.1 for further details.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): The application must be made within 30 working days of the date on which the “liable person” was given notice of registration or, on application by the liable person, any longer period the Australian court considers appropriate.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Section 12(9A) provides that the Federal Court of Australia may make rules in relation to the fixing of a period within which an application may be made to have the registration of a judgment set aside and the extension of such a period. No such rules are currently in effect and as such, the period has not been specified.

Common law and equity: The limitation periods will vary between states and territories, but by way of example, the period is 12 years in New South Wales. Please see question 2.4 for more details.

4.3 Can the defendant seek injunctive relief to prevent enforcement while a challenge is pending?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Not applicable. Section 7(10) prohibits action being taken to “enforce a registered judgment” during the period fixed by the court in which the registration may be challenged or, if such an application has been made, until the application has been finally determined. As such, there is no need for the defendant to seek injunctive relief to prevent enforcement while the challenge is pending.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. As Section 74 provides that a registered New Zealand judgment has the same force and effect as a judgment of the relevant Australian court, the latter could stay the effect or enforcement of the same under Section 74(3(b) and the usual principles.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Not applicable. Section 12(8) provides that execution shall not issue on a registered judgment for as long as, under the act or any applicable rules of court, it is competent for any person to make an application to have the registration set aside or where such an application is made, until after the application has been finally determined.

Common law and equity: Yes, according to the usual principles.

5 Court analysis and decision

5.1 Will the court review service of process in the initial proceedings?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. Section 7(2)(v) provides that a registered judgment must be set aside if the judgment debtor, being the defendant in the proceedings in the original court, did not receive notice of those proceedings in sufficient time to enable the judgment debtor to defend the proceedings and did not appear. However, this is irrespective of whether process had been duly served on the judgment debtor in accordance with the law of the country of the original court.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): No. As Part 7 of the act does not address this issue and as an application to register a “registrable NZ judgment” must be granted if the requirements of the act are satisfied, an Australian court will not directly examine whether there was service of process in the initial proceedings. Also, this is indirectly addressed by the notice requirements as provided for by Sections 73 and 74. However, it is possible that an egregious failure to provide notice in the initial proceedings could constitute a violation of Australian public policy under Section 72(1)(a).

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. As there is no specific provision in the act regarding the service of process in the initial proceedings, the foreign judgment will be registered according to the terms of the act.

Common law and equity: Yes, but it will not be determinative of whether the foreign court has complied with Australian concepts of natural justice.

5.2 Will the court review the jurisdiction of the foreign court in the initial proceedings?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. Section 7(2)(iv) provides that a registered judgment must be set aside if the courts of the country of the original court had “no jurisdiction in the circumstances of the case”. As such, Section 7(3) provides several examples of where those courts are deemed to have had jurisdiction, which are further clarified by Sections 7(4) and (5). These are summarised below:


  • Judgments in personam: Where the judgment is given in an action in personam, the foreign court had jurisdiction if the judgment debtor voluntarily submitted to the jurisdiction of the original court. This does not include entering an appearance in proceedings in the court or participating in proceedings in the court only to such extent as is necessary for the purpose only of one or more of the following:
    • protecting or obtaining the release of property seized, or threatened with seizure, in the proceedings or property subject to an order restraining its disposition or disposal;
    • contesting the jurisdiction of the court; or
    • inviting the court in its discretion not to exercise its jurisdiction in the proceedings.


  • Plaintiff or counter-claimant in original proceedings: The foreign court had jurisdiction where the judgment debtor was the plaintiff in, or counter-claimed in, the proceedings in the original court.

  • Submission to jurisdiction in original proceedings: The foreign court had jurisdiction where the judgment debtor was a defendant in the original court and had agreed, in respect of the subject matter of the proceedings, before the proceedings commenced, to submit to the jurisdiction of that court or of the courts of the country of that court.
  • Principal place of business: The foreign court had jurisdiction where the judgment debtor was a defendant in the original court and, at the time when the proceedings were instituted, resided in, or (being a body corporate) had its principal place of business in, the country of that court.
  • Transaction: The foreign court had jurisdiction where the judgment debtor was a defendant in the original court and the proceedings in that court were in respect of a transaction effected through or at an office or place of business that the judgment debtor had in the country of that court.
  • New Zealand tax: The foreign court had jurisdiction where there is an amount of money payable in respect of New Zealand tax under the judgment.
  • Proceedings for immovable property or in rem: In the case of a judgment given in an action of which the subject matter was immovable property or in an action in rem of which the subject matter was movable property, the foreign court had jurisdiction if the property in question was, at the time of the proceedings in the original, court situated in the country of that court.

  • Recognised by law of state or territory: In the case of a judgment given in an action other than an action of the kind referred to in the paragraphs above, the foreign court had jurisdiction if the jurisdiction of the original court is recognised by the law in force in the state or territory in which the judgment is registered.

However, as per Section 7(4), despite the provisions above, the courts of the country of the original court are not taken to have had jurisdiction for the matters listed below:

  • Immovable property outside country of original court: The foreign court had no jurisdiction if the subject matter of the proceedings was immovable property situated outside the country of the original court.
  • Proceedings contrary to agreement: Except in the cases referred to above titled “Judgments in personam“, “Plaintiff or counter-claimant in original proceedings”, “Submission to jurisdiction in original proceedings” and “Recognised by law of state or territory”, the foreign court had no jurisdiction if the bringing of the proceedings in the country of the original court was contrary to an agreement under which the dispute in question was to be settled otherwise than by proceedings in the courts of the country of that court.
  • Immunity at public international law and not waived: The foreign court had no jurisdiction if the judgment debtor, being a defendant in the original proceedings, was a person that, under the rules of public international law, was entitled to immunity from the jurisdiction of the courts of the country of the original court and did not submit to the jurisdiction of that court.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): No. The act does not specify jurisdiction as a ground on which a “registrable NZ judgment” can be refused. As such, as long as the application complies with Part 7 of the act, the registrable New Zealand judgment must be registered by the Australian court.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. As reciprocal arrangements are a prerequisite for the commonwealth attorney general to make the requisite declarations so that an application for registration can be made, the issue of the foreign court’s jurisdiction does not arise.

Common law and equity: Yes. The foreign court must have “international jurisdiction” over the defendant. Please see question 2.1 for more details.

5.3 Will the court review the foreign judgment for compliance with applicable law and public policy?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. Section 7(2)(xi) provides that the registration of the foreign judgment must be set aside if the enforcement of the foreign judgment, not being a judgment under which an amount of money is payable in respect of New Zealand tax, would be contrary to public policy. However, as per First Property Holdings Pte Ltd v Nyunt [2019] NSWSC 249 at [152], refusal of enforcement on the ground of public policy should be “narrowly confined”, lest the refusal be a de facto merits review of the foreign judgment as per Nygh’s Conflict of Laws in Australia (9th ed, 2014, LexisNexis Butterworths) at [40.79].

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. Section 72(1)(a) provides that an Australian court must set aside the registration of a New Zealand judgment if it is satisfied that the enforcement of the judgment would be contrary to public policy in Australia.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. As the commonwealth attorney general must make certain declarations before an application for registration can be made, the act does not specify public policy as a ground to refuse enforcement.

Common law and equity: Yes. The foreign judgment must comply with Australian public policy. Please see question 2.1 for more details.

5.4 Will the court review the merits of the foreign judgment?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) and Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. The court will not review the merits of a foreign judgment which is subject to an application for registration under any of these acts.

Common law and equity: No. The court will not review the merits of the case. Please see Question 2.1 for more details.

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?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 7(2)(b) provides the court with discretion to set aside the registration of a foreign judgment if it is satisfied that “the matter in dispute in the proceedings in the original court had before the date of the judgment in the original court been the subject of a final and conclusive judgment by a court having jurisdiction in the matter”.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): The act does not directly address this situation. However, Section 70 does specify that where a New Zealand money judgment has been partially satisfied, only the balance of the remaining payable amount can be registered. Also, Section 75 provides that a “registered New Zealand judgment” can only be enforced in Australia to the extent that it is capable of being enforced in a New Zealand court or tribunal. As such, it is arguably a question of whether the relevant judgment is enforceable under the law of New Zealand and if so, to what extent.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): The act does not directly address this situation. However, as the commonwealth attorney general must make certain declarations before an application for registration can be made, the issue conflicting foreign judgments may be addressed at that stage.

Common law and equity: No, insofar as the first judgment constitutes a res judicata and therefore could ground a defence of estoppel.

5.6 Are there any other grounds on which the court may refuse to recognise and enforce the foreign judgment?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) and Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. Please see question 4.1 for further details.

Common law and equity: Yes. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

5.7 Is partial recognition and enforcement possible?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Yes. Section 6(13) provides that if the foreign judgment is in respect of “different matters” and if some, but not all, of those matters could have been registered if they were contained in separate judgments, then the judgment may be registered in respect of those matters only.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Yes. Section 71 provides that if the New Zealand judgment is in relation to “different matters” and some of the provisions would be registrable if they were contained in a separate judgment, then the registrable provisions may be registered as a judgment under the act.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): No. As Section 12 provides that an application for registration of a foreign judgment cannot be enforced until the commonwealth attorney general has made certain declarations, the act seems to envisage that partial registration and enforcement is not possible. However, Section 12 does provide that partially satisfied judgments can be registered and enforced only for the remaining balance.

Common law and equity: Theoretically, yes. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

5.8 How will the court deal with cost issues (eg, interest, court costs, currency issues)?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth): Section 6(15) provides that the registered amount must include the reasonable costs of and incidental to the registration.

Section 6(15) provides that any interest on the foreign judgment which is due and payable as of the date of registration under the laws of the foreign court.

Section 6(11) provides that the judgment creditor may express the amount to be registered in the currency in which it is expressed or in Australian dollars. In the case of the latter, Sections 6(11A) and 6(11B) specify how the conversion rate is to be determined. However, these provisions provide that, among other things, the conversion rates must be sourced from “authorised foreign exchange dealers” who are authorised by the Reserve Bank of Australia. However, as of 11 March 2002, this authority was transferred to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission under the Financial Services Reform Act 2001 (Cth). The provisions of the act have not been updated to accommodate this change. However, in Acteon Middle East Fze t/as Team Energy Dubai v Smith [2015] QSC 265, Justice Peter Lyons of the Queensland Supreme Court registered the foreign judgment in pounds sterling, despite the judgment creditor being silent in its application as to which currency the registration should be expressed. Also, as per PT Thiess Contractors Indonesia v PT Arutmin Indonesia [2015] QSC 123 at [95], the common law of Australia permits an Australia court to express an amount payable in a foreign currency. See also Coghill v Indochine Resources Pty Ltd (No 2) [2015] FCA 1030 at [104]. As such, this issue can be circumvented by seeking registration in the currency of the foreign judgment.

Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth): Section 77 provides that various costs and expenses incurred in enforcing a “registered New Zealand judgment” may be recovered, such as the reasonable costs incurred in applying for the registration and of the enforcement.

Section 78 provides that interest is payable on a “registered New Zealand judgment” at the same rate or rates as would be applicable in the original court or tribunal, and is recoverable to the extent that an Australian court is satisfied that interest is payable under the applicable rules of the same.

Section 69 provides that an application for the registration of a New Zealand judgment can occur in the original currency or in an equivalent amount in Australian dollars, determined by the rate of exchange on the working day before the day the application is made. Section 18 of the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Regulation 2012 (Cth) specifies that the rate of exchange is as published by the Reserve Bank of Australia on the relevant day.

Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Section 12(6) provides that when a judgment is registered, it will include the reasonable costs of and incidental to registration, including obtaining a certified copy of the original foreign judgment.

Section 12(13) provides that interest payable on the foreign judgment by virtue of the laws of the country of the original court will be included up to the date of the registration of the

The act does not address the issue of currency of the foreign judgment or a relevant exchange rate.

Common law and equity: The usual principles, legislation and rules of court address the issues of costs, interest and currency conversation. For example, as is usual in common law jurisdictions, “costs follow the event” and the rules of court provide pre and post-judgment interest rates.

6 Appeals

6.1 Can decisions in relation to the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments be appealed?

Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) and Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth): Yes, insofar as the usual principles that apply to appeals will apply to decisions under the act. For example, Section 7(2)(iii) of the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) provides that a registered judgment must be set aside if the foreign judgment was registered “in contravention of this Act”. Section 72(1)(b) of the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) is similar. As such, any determination of this issue by a judge of first instance in the supreme court of a state or territory would involve questions of law and fact that could be appealed to that jurisdiction’s intermediate appeals court, such as the Court of Appeal in New South Wales.

Common law and equity: Yes. All decisions regarding the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments are subject to the usual appellate procedures.

6.2 Can the applicant seek injunctive relief while the appeal is pending?

Yes. The applicant can seek injunctive or interim relief while the appeal is pending on the usual principles and procedures.

7 Enforcing the foreign judgment

7.1 Once a declaration of enforceability has been granted, how can the foreign judgment be enforced?

Money judgments: All money judgments in Australia, however described, are ultimately enforced like any other debt. For example, Section 6(7) of the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth) provides that a registered judgment has, for the purposes of enforcement, the same force and effect as if the foreign judgment had originally been given in the court in which it is registered. Furthermore:

  • proceedings may be taken on the registered judgment;
  • interest begins on run on the judgment according to the applicable rules; and
  • the registering court has control over the enforcement of the registered judgement in the usual way.

As all registered judgments under this act will be for a sum of money, they can be enforced like any other debt that accrues by way of a court’s judgment.

Similarly, Section 74 of the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) provides that a “registered New Zealand judgment” has the same force and effect, and may give rise to the same proceedings for enforcement, as if the judgment had been given by the Australian court in which it is registered; and Section 12(7) of the Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth) provides that a registered judgment has the same force and effect as if it were a final judgment given in the registering court. Both of these will be enforced as a debt according to the usual procedures. The same is true of money judgments recognised and enforced under common law or equity.

Non-money judgments: Currently, equity is the only avenue for the enforcement of a non-money judgment in Australia and, according to the authorities, appears to be open only to a foreign court of equity that seeks assistance in the enforcement of its judgment via equitable remedies. Please see question 2.1 for further details.

7.2 Can the foreign judgment be enforced against third parties?

Yes, to the extent that any debt can be enforced against a third party in the usual way. For example, in New South Wales, Section 117 of the Civil Procedure Act 2005 (NSW) provides that a “garnishee order” may be made and, to the extent of the amount outstanding under the judgment, attached to all debts that are due or accruing from the garnishee to the judgment debtor at the time of service of the order. This is equivalent to third-party debt orders in other common law jurisdictions, such as England and Wales.

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?

There are no scheduled or announced reforms to the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth), Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) or the Foreign Proceedings (Excess of Jurisdiction) Act 1984 (Cth).

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?

  • Check which regime the foreign judgment is registrable or recognisable under: Unless the foreign judgment is from New Zealand – in which case the Trans-Tasman Proceedings Act 2010 (Cth) is applicable – first determine whether the foreign judgment can be registered under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth). If not, then recognition at common law is the next step. Consider enforcement at equity only if necessary or otherwise convenient, given the specific requirements.
  • Check the foreign judgment carefully: In the case of money judgments, does the foreign court that gave the foreign judgment have jurisdiction? Is the foreign judgment final and conclusive? Is there an identity of the parities? Is the sum definite and liquidated?
  • Choose the correct court: Australia’s federal system of government ensures that jurisdiction of a given court is rarely plenary. However, as the supreme courts of the states and territories have the broadest jurisdiction of all Australia courts, when in doubt, it is safest to start there.
  • Have All of the Necessary Evidence
  • Once the correct Court has been chosen, check that specific Court’s rules to see if the necessary evidence is prescribed, say when registering a foreign judgment under the Foreign Judgments Act 1991 (Cth). A lack of the necessary evidence may prevent the relevant judicial officer from determining the matter on the papers and may lead to an unnecessary directions hearing.
  • Do not mislead the court: As many attempted registrations, recognitions and enforcements of foreign judgments will occur in the absence of the defendant and therefore will be conducted ex parte, it is essential not to mislead the court.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.

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