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18/09/2019
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Toolkit on the European Small Claims Procedure - Enforcement

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1. Judgment


 When the defendant does not exercise his right to contest by not returning Form C, The judgment shall be enforceable notwithstanding any possible appeal in accordance to article 15 of the Regulation


However, in order to enforce this decision in all Member States of the European Union, the applicant is entitled to request, at no extra cost, in accordance with Article 20 for a certificate European Small Claims Procedure, using Form D. 


The court or tribunal shall issue a certificate concerning a judgment in the European Small Claims Procedure using standard Form D, as set out in Annex IV, at no extra cost.


This form D, containing the amounts of the claim, corresponds to the enforcement formula and is therefore sufficient for itself to be able to enforce it in all the Member States of the European Union.


Indeed article 20 of the Regulation states that “a judgment given in a Member State in the European Small Claims Procedure shall be recognised and enforced in another Member State without the need for a declaration of enforceability and without any possibility of opposing its recognition”.


2. Enforcement of the judgment 


By this regulation the European Union creates an autonomous procedure only to obtain a decision which can be executed in all member countries (except Denmark).


However, a decision given in the European Small Claims Procedure shall be carried out under the same conditions as a decision given in the Member State of enforcement.


The right of enforcement therefore remains the prerogative of individual Member States.


Article 21 of the Regulation specifies the conditions to be met by an claimant who wishes to proceed, through a judicial officer, to enforce his decision in another Member State of the European Union.


The party seeking enforcement shall produce:

  • a copy of the judgment which satisfies the conditions necessary to establish its authenticity; and
  • a copy of the certificate referred to in Article 20(2) and, where necessary, the translation thereof into the official language of the Member State of enforcement or, if there are several official languages in that Member State, the official language or one of the official languages of court or tribunal proceedings of the place where enforcement is sought in conformity with the law of that Member State, or into another language that the Member State of enforcement has indicated it can accept. Each Member State may indicate the official language or languages of the institutions of the European Union other than its own which it can accept for the European Small Claims Procedure. The content of Form D shall be translated by a person qualified to make translations in one of the Member States.

 Once the enforcement agent in the executing Member State has these elements, it may, without further formality, proceed to enforcement against the sentenced party:

 

3. Translation issue


Article 21, 2 (b) provides that the content of Form D in Annex IV must be translated into the official language of the Member State of enforcement or, if there are several official languages in that Member State, the official language or one of the official languages of court or tribunal proceedings of the place where enforcement is sought in conformity with the law of that Member State, or into another language that the Member State of enforcement has indicated it can accept.


This is the content that needs to be translated and not the container (the form itself) which is in all languages ​​on the European e-justice portal.


Translation costs are therefore limited to the maximum through the use of standard forms.



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