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Treaties in Domestic Civil Litigation: Jura Novit Curia?

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image of Nordic Journal of International Law

Many international treaties regulate relations between states and private individuals (vertical treaty rules) and transnational relations between private individuals (transnational treaty rules), and domestic civil litigation often plays an important role in the enforcement of such rules. The actual impact of treaty rules in domestic civil litigation depends inter alia on the procedural principles governing the judicial application of law. In the European legal tradition of civil law, these principles are often expressed by the Latin adages “jura novit curia” (the court knows the law) and “da mihi factum, dabo tibi jus” (give me the facts, I give you the law). This article analyses how such procedural principles affect the obligations of domestic courts to apply vertical and transnational treaty rules in civil litigation and how, at the same time, international law can influence these domestic procedural principles in ways which create a complex relationship between international law and domestic civil procedure law.

Affiliations: 1: Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law, Centre for Studies in Legal Culture, University of Copenhagen, Denmark


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