In this era of globalization, one key issues in international class and collective actions is the recognition of foreign judgments by countries who lack the same collective or class action procedures. I was recently introduced to a lawyer and scholar, Leandro Perucchi, who published his PhD thesis on this topic. Dr. Perucchi’s book, with the German title Anerkennung und Vollstrechung von US Class action-Urteilen und -Vergleichen in der Schweiz, concludes that class action judgments and settlements can be recognized in Switzerland and be given res judicata effect.
Foreign enforceability of class action judgments is an important question facing any litigant or court involved in international or transnational class action litigation. Even when it is permitted (see this CAB entry discussing the Supreme Court’s Morrison v. Australia National Bank decision addressing foreign-cubed class actions), obtaining a class action judgment against a foreign defendant in the United States may be a hollow victory if the defendant lacks sufficient US assets and is located in a country that does not recognize US class action judgments as enforceable.