The implications of Brexit on private international law fail to make headlines. However, due to the overwhelming ‘europeanisation’ of this area, Brexit will have far-reaching consequences. EU law has drastically impacted the United Kingdom’s commercial judicial system, notably the procedure applicable to international commercial litigation. The Brussels I Regulation, and its Recast, determine which Member State has jurisdiction in a civil and commercial dispute involving an international element.
London maintains a dominant position as a jurisdiction of choice for international commercial disputes. While this reputation is built upon the experience of UK’s judges and the quality, certainty and efficiency of its legal system, it is heavily reliant on the procedural effectiveness guaranteed by the Brussels regime, especially with regards to choice-of-court agreements. A major accomplishment of the Brussels regime is ensuring the effectiveness of choice-of-court agreements by protecting them from pre-emptive proceedings in other Member States. However, post-Brexit, the Brussels regime will cease to apply to the UK. This paper examines whether choice-of-court agreements electing London will remain effective or whether they will be at risk of being undermined by pre-emptive strikes.