General introduction


This project examines issues of private law that arise when one legal system has to deal with the legal norms of another legal system. The main reason is that the final test of recognition of foreign law is what the courts will do about it. It also considers how to handle private litigation cases involving public jurisdiction. Problems can manifest themselves in many ways. Ordinary seemingly purely domestic cases may have important implications for foreign jurisdictions. Some cases are truly international and can be foreign cases in any court.

Thapa v. Kuca 1, the deceased Nupe man, left his home in Lagos and died on the highway in Bida. The question was whether that domestic law should apply.

1 (1945) 18NLR5.


The law where the property was, i.e. lex situs? The personal law of the deceased was applied. This is a Muslim law prevalent among the Nupe people. This indicates that there are many signs of an extrinsic element.

A party may be of foreign nationality or reside abroad.
Lawsuits may relate to assets located abroad.
Or disposition abroad of property located in Nigeria.
Just as legal disputes exist because of differences in local legal systems, there are also differences in the approaches taken by the legal systems of Nigeria and other countries to resolve conflicts of law issues.

Research background

Private international law, also known as conflict of law rules, exists because there are separate sets of local legal systems (sets of separate legal entities) with vastly different rules governing various legal relationships. of everyday life. or


Courts in one country often have to take into account legal norms in force in another country. When faced with a case involving contact with foreigners, there are several possible responses a court may take. First, in the most primitive cases, the case can be treated as a purely domestic one, regardless of the foreign element, and its own laws can be applied to its resolution.

Second, the court may find the procedure inappropriate where there are foreign contacts and reject the judgment. The court will seek jurisdiction only if the national court determines that it is the proper forum, or at least that it is not the improper forum. The rest of the possibilities covered by this book are special in the sense that courts cannot simply dismiss alien contact cases and raise special issues that require serious medical attention. acknowledging that there is. 20

Purpose of research

The overall aim of this study is to examine the differences between Nigerian domestic law and other legal systems and find solutions to conflict problems.

Specifically, this research aims to achieve the following:

Investigate and determine the terms under which the court has jurisdiction over claims.
For each group of cases, the legal system of each local government should be researched and determined, and the rights of the parties should be determined accordingly.
(a) Investigating and clarifying the circumstances under which the foreign judgment is found relevant to the dispute;
Rights conferred on judgment creditors by foreign judgments may be enforced by litigation in Nigeria.
It highlights the level of experience and depth of knowledge of Nigeria and several other countries with respect to private international law, and how judges apply private international law principles. twenty one

research points

The main focus of this study is when there are contradictions between different local ways inside and outside a sovereign state, leading to the choice of a particular system to govern it. Particular attention is paid to the Nigerian legal system in comparison and contrast with other legal systems.

scope of research

Private international law is not a separate legal field in the same sense as contract law or tort law. It’s all pervasive. “It starts suddenly before a court or during a trial. It could have sprung like a minefield in a simple common law case…a matter of administrative proceedings, equity cases, divorce or bankruptcy cases, passage proceedings or criminal proceedings. The most trivial of guilt claims, the most complex equitable claims, can be suddenly interrupted by the emergence of knots that can only be resolved by private international law. ”

Frederick Harrison, Jurisprudence and Law Clash (Macmillan, London, 1919), pp. 101-102.
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Nevertheless, private international law in the Nigerian legal system, like tort law and contract law, is a separate and distinct entity, although it does not have this entity as it deals with specific topics, it is always one of the three for dealing with one or more. (3) Questions, namely:

Jurisdiction of the Nigerian Courts,
choice of law,
Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments.
All branches of private law are considered, but only in relation to these three matters.


The methods used for this research are based on primary and secondary sources (materials). These include reported cases from law, national and foreign textbooks, legal journals, legal dictionaries, opinions of legal authors, legal reports, and case books available in the Internet literature. Also, historical, analytical and ethical methods are used to dig deeper and better understand the research.



‘Conflict of law and choice situation under which this topic is based is a wide area of study. Reference will be made to several foreign and Nigerian texts by distinguished authors. Various journals will also be referred to.

CHESHIRE AND NORTH’S Private International Law3 states that ‘Private International Law, then, is that part of law which comes into play when the issue before the court affects some fact, event or transaction that is so closely connected with a foreign system of law as to necessitate recourse to that system.’

It has, accordingly, been described by THOMAS BATY4 as meaning

The rules voluntarily chosen by a given State for the decision of

cases which have a foreign complexion.


Can it be possible that a Dutch father stepping on board a steamer at

Rotterdam with His dear and lawful child should on arrival at the

(Butterworths, 1992, 12th)
Polarized Law,(Stevens & Haynes, London 1914) p.148. Goodman’s Trust (1881) Chapter 17. 266 @ 298.
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Port of London finds child turned stranger by blood

And in law and bastard fillus nullius.

For its part, OBILADE A.O.6 believed that there is a choice of law to determine cases of improperness, whether it is common law or non-customary law governing particular circumstances. rice field. He also argued that common law rules superseded English law, and that to be valid common law must pass an incompatibility test. It acknowledged the fact that there is a conflict between the rules and that there may be a problem of choosing which common law to apply when two common laws conflict on the same subject. According to RAYMOND SMITH’s book Conflict of Laws7, he either believes that the plaintiff has an advantage in filing a lawsuit in that country, or that the defendant has no jurisdiction and thus has an obvious link to a country. believes that a case may happen to be heard in another country.

6 “The Legal System of Nigeria” (Spectrum Books Ltd, Ibadan, 2003).

7 Cavendish Publishing Limited, 1993.

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Country with which the case is most closely related. Some cases are truly international and can be foreign cases in any court.

ASEIN J.O.8 considers that there may be conflicts between common law rules and English law rules, particularly in matters of marriage and inheritance. Therefore, if a person is subject to two different laws at the same time, the question arises as to which rule applies to that person.

Definition of terms

Dispute lawyers use several Latin terms that have been adopted or derived from continental writers.

Law enacted by Lex causea court

as the governing law of the matter.

Lex domicile Laws of the country in which the person resides


Rex Foley


Lex loci delicti law of the place where mistakes are made

an act (crime) was committed

Lex loci Celebrationis Laws Where Marriages Are Celebrated


Rex Solution

It will be executed.


Lex patriae Nationality Law.

Lex propria causae Proprietary law. Lex propria delicti own tort law.

Lex situs The law of the place where something is placed

In particular, but not exclusively,

part of the land.

Locus regit actum Documents are subject to local law.

An old adage that finds its modernity

Formula for listed lex locus rules




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