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Jurisdictional issues

A case heard in court is heavily influenced by jurisdictional concerns, therefore it's important to give them careful thought throughout the legal process. Several issues of jurisdiction arise in the case of Bettina Buscetta (Milano) along with Cosmo Cash (C), who allegedly breached a contract and defamed each other.

There are three main legal problems at play in this case: breach of contract, dishonesty, and defamation; thus, a court in New Zealand would have subject matter jurisdiction to hear the case. The jurisdiction of the civil courts is appropriate for these types of cases. There does not seem to be a problem with topical jurisdiction here since New Zealand courts have the authority to decide civil disputes.

The term "personal jurisdiction" refers to a court's ability to hear a matter involving a particular person or organization. The following are the main considerations in terms of personal jurisdiction:

  • Properties in Italy as well as Spain however nothing in Australia nor New Zealand; these are the locations of Milano, the named defendant. Personal jurisdiction is often based on the defendant having some kind of relationship to the jurisdiction, therefore this fact immediately raises issues regarding whether or not a New Zealand court possesses jurisdiction against Milano.
  • C, the plaintiff, on the other hand, has no assets outside of New Zealand. Considering a New Zealand citizen is a party to the suit and would be severely affected by any judgment, this fact bolsters the contention of personal jurisdiction within New Zealand.
  • The capacity of judgments obtained in different jurisdictions to be enforced is another important factor to think about. Judgments obtained in Italy may be enforced in New Zealand, however in Spain they cannot. This is consistent with the concept of reciprocity, which permits judgements acquired in one nation to be enforced in another under certain circumstances. The fact that New Zealand judgements may be implemented in Italy bolsters the case for personal jurisdiction of New Zealand, and this guarantees a workable remedy for any judgment in C's favor [1].
  • The fact that Milano has no assets in Australia or New Zealand further reduces the likelihood of personal jurisdiction in those nations. The existence or relationship of the defendant inside the jurisdiction serves as the usual basis for personal jurisdiction.

In light of the above, it might be argued that New Zealand courts do have exclusive authority over Milano in this matter. The existence of C, in New Zealand, together with the actual enforceability of judgments in both New Zealand as well as Italy, enhances the case for a New Zealand court to consider the dispute. C must carefully weigh the risks of going to court, as well as the strategic ramifications, before taking any action. To make a well-informed judgment on the proper jurisdiction for the case, it is recommended to consult with legal specialists who are well-versed in foreign jurisdictional problems.

Law Choice:

Contracts often include choice of law clauses to establish the body of law that will be used for the purpose of interpreting and executing the agreement. Bettina Buscetta (Milan) as well as Cosmo Cash (C) have an option of law provision in their contract that reads, which gives rise to a number of interesting questions.

Contractual choice of law provisions are frequently upheld by New Zealand courts. These provisions let the parties agree on a common legal system to regulate their dealings with one another[2]. It represents the independence of the parties involved and lessens risk associated with international trade.

Distinct Variations in Legal Systems:

In this specific example, the notion of good faith in business transactions is treated quite differently in Italian law than in New Zealand law. The notion of good faith is an important and ubiquitous element in Italian law that influences many facets of business transactions and contractual partnerships.

Compared to that, New Zealand law usually maintains a more stringent application to the idea of good faith. Although the New Zealand courts' attitude towards implying a general obligation of good faith into business contracts has changed, it was traditionally more reluctant to do so than it is now.

Consequences for the Analysis of Contracts:

The contract's choice of Italian law to govern its interpretation and enforcement may have far-reaching consequences.

Particularly important might be how good faith is defined here. Issues of good faith in the fulfilment of contractual responsibilities and fair dealing between the parties may be at play in Milano's claimed breach of contract and C's claim of deception and defamation.

The parties' responsibilities and the question of whether there has been a breach of good faith in the fulfilment of the contract may be interpreted differently depending on the applicable legal theory of good faith.

Possible Application of Different Laws:

There is potential for a conflict of laws situation due to the substantial disparities in the handling of good faith. New Zealand courts may need to decide how to apply the selected law in light of New Zealand's legal principles if there is a contradiction between the choice of law and the law of the forum (New Zealand in this instance).

Perspectives on Strategy:

C should evaluate whether the use of Italian law helps or hurts his argument in light of the differences in how the law treats good faith.

Planning your legal approach, including how you'll present your arguments under Italian law and how you'll deal with any discrepancies in good faith interpretation, is essential[2]. In order to provide the strongest possible case, it may be necessary to hire specialists in both Italian and New Zealand law.

Venue and Forum Non Conveniens:

The ease and impartiality of the litigation procedure are profoundly affected by the choice of venue and forum, two crucial components of every judicial case. regardless of whether a New Zealand court has jurisdiction into the dispute between Bettina Buscetta (Milano) as well as Cosmo Cash (C), the decision of the right venue is an important factor.

There are a number of reasons to choose New Zealand:

  • The deal was signed in Auckland, New Zealand by both sides. There is now a substantial link between the issue and the jurisdiction thanks to this fact. Since the contract was formed and talks were conducted inside New Zealand's borders, this suggests that New Zealand has a vested interest in the subject.
  • C, the complainant, has all he needs in New Zealand. This is a strong case for New Zealand to be the site of any legal proceedings. It assures that C may actively engage in the legal procedures and obtain any remedies given, should the case be determined in his favor [3].
  • Another important consideration is the forum's interest in the dispute. As the contract was signed inside New Zealand's borders, it is in the nation's best interest for any disputes that may arise to be resolved in accordance with New Zealand law.
  • Choosing New Zealand's The Forum might help you prevent possible disputes. Any Potential Issues either challenges that could emerge From Having To Apply Foreign Law, Interpret Paperwork, Either Cope With Another Worldwide Legal Challenges Can Be prevented By Picking New Zealand Being The Forum's Location. The lawsuit may go ahead more rapidly because of New Zealand's established legal system[4].
  • New Zealand is more likely to have easily available local testimony and proof pertinent to the case, rendering the litigation procedure easier and cheaper.

Counterarguments and challenges:

  • If Italian law is selected as the controlling law in the agreement, the parties may argue that Italy is a more convenient venue for resolving any legal disputes that may arise.
  • Although judgments issued in New Zealand are enforceable in Italy, there may be complications when trying to implement a judgment obtained in New Zealand in Italy. Because Milano has assets in Italy, a New Zealand judgment may be difficult to enforce.
  • Milano could claim that New Zealand doesn't qualify as a suitable venue since the company has no assets or activities there. They may choose a forum wherein they've got a more noticeable presence as well as resources.

Limitation periods

Statutes of limitations (or "limitation periods") are the deadlines by which a legal claim must be filed. In the case of Bettina Buscetta (Milano) as well as Cosmo Cash (C), knowing the limitation periods in various jurisdictions is critical for C's choice on whether to start legal actions. Here are the applicable statutes of limitation:

  • In New Zealand, the statute of limitations for both contractual and tort claims is six years. This implies that a claim must be filed within six years of the occurrence of the alleged violation or misconduct. C has a decent amount of time to file a lawsuit because to New Zealand's restriction period.
  • For combined contractual as well as tort disputes in Spain, the statute of limitations is set at seven years. In comparison to New Zealand, this extends the time frame within which a plaintiff may file a lawsuit. Given Milano's absence of assets within New Zealand, Spanish jurisdiction may not be optimal. This makes it more difficult to enforce a judgment if one is rendered.
  • Italy: The time limit period for contractual as well as tort claims throughout is four years. When compared to the other three jurisdictions, this one has the smallest duration. C would have a shorter window of time to present his claims if he filed suit in Italy. In addition, Milano's considerable holdings in Italy may make it difficult to enforce a judgment obtained in Italy.

Given the disparities in limitation periods, New Zealand is undoubtedly the most favorable country for C to begin legal action. C has a fair length of time to evaluate the circumstances, collect evidence, as well as pursue the allegations against Milano, since the statute of limitations for contractual along with tort claims is six years[6].

C must be careful not to let the time limit pass before initiating actions, or he may lose his right to make the claims. C should get legal advice as soon as possible to ensure that he takes all required actions within the limitation period to recover his losses and repair his reputation. It's possible that this will include notifying Milano, conducting inquiries, and drafting legal pleadings.

C must also think about the probable difficulties of implementing a judgment against Milano's assets in Italy, as well as the choice of forum (New Zealand). Although New Zealand's limitation period is favorable, he should also take into account other practical concerns, such as his capacity to enforce any judgment.

Litigation Costs and Duration

When determining where to file a lawsuit, it is important to think about how much money and time it will cost. It is crucial for C to consider the expenses and time of litigation in several jurisdictions in the matter of Bettina Buscetta as well as Cosmo Cash .

When compared to other countries, New Zealand's legal system is often regarded as being both efficient and affordable. Those in need of legal redress may find New Zealand's lower than average litigation expenses appealing[4]. In addition, lawsuits are often resolved quickly in the New Zealand legal system, which might result in shorter litigation times.

Spain: On the contrary side, Spain is acknowledged as having a legal system with significantly greater litigation expenses. Litigation in Spain may go on for a long time due to the slow pace of the country's legal system. Legal action in Spain may provide extra hurdles given Milano's lack of assets in New Zealand.

The Italian legal system is widely acknowledged to be more expensive than its Spanish counterpart. Cases may take more time to resolve due to the complexity of the Italian judicial system. It's possible that you'll incur hefty legal fees and costs if you decide to take legal action in Italy.

C should consider the prospective costs and time of litigation within each jurisdiction against his goals and available resources.

C must determine whether or not he has the financial means to cover the expenses of litigation. Pursuing a lawsuit in a nation with reduced litigation expenses, including New Zealand, might prove more manageable to him, particularly after incurring considerable financial losses.

Time is of the essence, therefore C has to give his situation some thought. New Zealand is preferable if he needs a quick settlement because of its shorter lawsuit lengths.

Practical problems: Taking legal action outside a foreign jurisdiction such asSpain or Italy may pose practical problems, like language limitations, cultural disparities, as well as the practicalities of maintaining a case over a distance[3]. The lawsuit procedure may be complicated and drawn out as a result of these issues.

While C may save money and time by filing in New Zealand, it is important to consider how easy it would be to actually get a judgment and have it enforced. A New Zealand judgment against Milano's assets in Italy might be difficult to enforce.

Ultimately, C should base his choice on where to initiate legal action on a thorough examination of his financial resources, the time sensitivity of his case, the complexity of the issues, and the likelihood of successfully enforcing a judgment.


Alleged Mafia Connections:

Buscetta (Milano) and Cosmo Cash (C)'s suspected Mafia ties add a complicated and perhaps dangerous layer to the ongoing judicial processes. There are a number of ways in which these ties might affect the case, including security issues, the appearance of prejudice, and outright meddling. Therefore, it is essential to conduct a thorough inquiry into the veracity and significance of these charges.

  • Concerns for C and his legal team's safety have arisen as a direct result of the allegations of Mafia ties. Potential hazards, including to C's personal safety and the protection of his legal counsel, might arise if these charges have any merit. C and his legal rights need a careful evaluation of these security risks, and his legal team must act accordingly.
  • Possible Prejudice The court system may be prejudiced or show bias if it believes that B's family has links to the Mafia. C's prospects of a fair and impartial trial may be diminished if the case is regarded and decided unfairly due to this prejudice. C's legal team has to be on the lookout for any signs of prejudice and work hard to make sure the case is determined based on the facts and the law.
  • There may be cause for worry over possible interference with court procedures if the claims of Mafia ties are believed to be true. This intervention might show in different ways, including witness intimidation, evidence tampering, or efforts to affect the result of the case. C's legal team has a responsibility to preserve their client's rights and maintain the legitimacy of the judicial system.

C's legal team should explore the following steps to further examine these allegations:

  • The legal team should compile all evidence pertaining to the suspected Mafia ties. Documents, news articles, witness accounts, and anything else that may help establish the veracity of these claims may be included.
  • C's legal team should confer with specialists familiar with organized crime, the Mafia, and the possibility of ties between persons and criminal organizations in order to determine the veracity of the charges. These professionals may provide light on the veracity of the claims.
  • C's legal team should question potential witnesses if they know anything about these ties. This would allow them to get more information and background.
  • Given the possible security risks, C's legal team and any potentially vulnerable witnesses should consult with security professionals to assess the best course of action for ensuring everyone's safety.

Answer 1 : 


The answer to (a) would change dramatically if the contract included a provision making Italian law applicable to any disputes arising out of or in connection with the agreement.

Any assertions of jurisdiction to any other country, such as New Zealand, could be preempted by the contract's preferred forum clause. This contractual term would have a significant impact on the jurisdictional problems, including personal jurisdiction and venue selection. How this provision would change the recommendation is as follows:

  • Jurisdictional Issues: The language establishing Italy as the only jurisdiction for all claims under the contract would make it clear that any legal problems relating to the contract should be prosecuted in Italy. This would make it less likely that courts in New Zealand, Spain, or anywhere else would need to hear the case[4].
  • The parties willingly submit to the exclusive and exclusive jurisdiction of the courts located in Italy for any and all disputes arising out of or relating to this Agreement. Thus, a court in New Zealand would likely respect Milano's preference for litigation to take place in Italy, and the latter may make such a demand. C may find it difficult to demonstrate that New Zealand is the proper venue for the lawsuit because of this.
  • The decision to select of Italy as the venue would be strengthened by a choice of law provision making Italian law the prevailing law (lex contractus). New Zealand courts typically uphold both the selection of forum as well as choice of law provisions, assuming they are explicit and unambiguous.
  • Due to the contract's exclusive jurisdiction clause, the theory of forum non conveniens, which evaluates whether a certain jurisdiction is the most convenient one for a given dispute, may not apply. In this scenario, the contract specifies the venue where any disputes will be heard.
  • If Italy is selected as the exclusive court of jurisdiction, then the limitation periods established by Italian law will also apply. C must be aware of the limitation periods that apply to his claims in Italy and abide by them.
  • Litigation Time and Money might Be Impacted by Italy's Legal System Going forward, the Italian legal system might have an effect on the time and money spent on litigation[5]. C must take all of this into account while making a move.
  • The matter would be presented to the Italian court system, which might raise security concerns and the possibility of meddling due to the alleged ties to the Mafia. C's legal staff would have to evaluate these elements within the framework of Italian law.

In essence, the advice in (a) would be dramatically altered if the contract included a condition making Italy the major and frequently exclusive forum of legal issues linked to the deal. C's capacity to prosecute the action in other countries, such as New Zealand, would be restricted by this provision, necessitating a shift in legal approach and considerations.

Answer 2

To properly counsel Homer's executor,(i.e, Mr. Burns), upon the international as well as private pertaining to the handling and disbursement of Homer's estate, it is necessary to take into account the intricate legal structure involving jurisdictions and the unique legal principles along with requirements in each.

Will Authenticity:

There is much doubt about the legality of Homer's will, which he executed in Hungary this year. Wills in Hungary and Romania must be notarized and signed in order to be legitimate. However, the will's legality must be determined in accordance with the rules of the relevant jurisdiction.

Legal Effect of a Will: Choosing the Applicable Law The formal validity of a will in Hungary is determined by the legislation of the testator's nationality during the time when it is executed. Because Homer was a Romanian citizen domiciled within Hungary when he wrote and executed the will, Hungarian law ought to be employed to evaluate the instrument's formal legality[6].

Therefore, under Hungarian law, the testament appears to be void since it was not properly sealed nor notarized. This means it may not be accepted as a legal will in Hungary.

Romanian and Hungarian Inheritance Laws:

Because Homer did not leave a legal will, the next most important factor to address is the inheritance rules of Hungary and Romania.

In Hungary, minors under the age of 18 are disinherited under the country's inheritance law. According to Hungarian law, Lisa (16) as well as Maggie (14) are too young to inherit. This leaves Bart as the only heir to Homer's Hungarian estate[7].

However, ex-nuptial offspring are not considered "children" for the purposes of testate or intestate succession under Romanian law and are thus disqualified from inheriting. Because of this, Maggie cannot inherit under Romanian law. Bart and Lisa are the only Simpson children who may inherit from Homer's Romanian estate.

Comparing the New Zealand England:

New Zealand and English inheritance law do not differentiate between children's marital status and that of their parents, in contrast to the inheritance laws of Hungary along with Romania.

Both New Zealand and English law recognize the inherent equality of all children born inside a marriage, civil union, as well as ex-nuptial relationship. Since Homer has offspring in both New Zealand and England, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie may all inherit from either country.

Estate Distribution:

Various inheritance rules throughout the world will have an impact on how Homer's fortune is divided. Since these assets are situated in different countries, they will be split in accordance with the applicable legislation of those nations.

The 800,000 Hungarian farm is subject to Hungarian law, and Bart is the sole legal successor because of his age. In Hungary, neither Lisa nor Maggie would have any inheritance rights.

Homer's financial account in Romania ($90,000) was going to be subject to Romanian legislation. Maggie would be disqualified as an heir under Romanian law, whereas Bart and Lisa would be included.

Waiheke Island residence ($900,000), New Zealand bank account ($80,000), as well as New Zealand personal property ($50,000) are all subject to New Zealand law. Bart, Lisa, along with Maggie may each receive a third of the estate.

Inheritance rights for Bart, Lisa, and Maggie are codified as "equal" under English law, which applies to the mortgage on the English property ($200,000).

The Property (Relationships) Act of 1976 and Marge's Claim:

When Marge applies to divide the relationship property in Homer's estate, she indicates her desire to do so by selecting Option A under Section 61(2) considering Property (Relationships) Act of 1976. The New Zealand estate distribution may be affected by this application.

  • Marge may have a rightful claim to some of her partner's property in New Zealand within the Property (Relationships) Act of 1976. This law applies to the $900,000 house on Waiheke Island along with the $80,000 in the family's New Zealand bank account.
  • Marge's contributions to the partnership may be taken into account by a New Zealand court when deciding how to divide marital property. This might include her intangible contributions like taking care of the house and the kids.
  • The court must decide whether or whether Marge has a valid claim to any of the relationship's assets, and then divide those assets fairly and equitably between the parties.

To sum up, the administration and distribution of Homer's estate are difficult owing to the contradictory legal requirements and the varying inheritance laws of many countries. Bart, Lisa, and Maggie's eligibility to inherit differs based on the jurisdiction and the unique legislation of each nation. The additional element of intricacy is added by Marge's counterclaim within the New Zealand Property (Relationships) Act of 1976. So that the estate is administered in accordance with the applicable laws and all beneficiaries' interests are properly recognized and safeguarded, it is essential for Mr. Burns, acting as executor, to engage closely with legal professionals who specialize in foreign administration of estates[9].

Given the many countries involved, the different rules governing inheritance, along with the possible implications of Marge's claim in New Zealand's Property (Relationships) Act 1976, counseling Mr. Burns, Homer's executor, regarding the management and splitting of Homer's estate is a key duty. The following actions and considerations are crucial for a hassle-free and lawful procedure:

  • Seek Legal Assistance: Mr. Burns should consult legal specialists who specialize in foreign estate management and succession legislation. These professionals are invaluable resources for understanding how to navigate the nuances of different legal systems and ensuring you are in compliance with the rules of each nation in which you operate[8]. Their knowledge and experience are just what this difficult estate needs.
  • To evaluate the claim of each beneficiary based on their legal standing in Hungary, Romania, New Zealand, and England, Mr. Burns may seek the assistance of international estate attorneys.
  • These legal professionals will also be able to assist on how to resolve possible conflicts as well as disagreements that may result from conflicting laws and the interaction between several countries.
  • Mr. Burns should consult with his legal advisors to establish an all-encompassing estate distribution strategy. In order to guarantee that the estate is divided in line with relevant laws, this plan must take into consideration the statutory requirements within the applicable jurisdiction.
  • Each asset's distribution under the plan should be specified in accordance with the applicable legislation. Properties in Hungary, Romania, New Zealand, along with Great Britain are included.
  • The inheritance laws of Hungary and Romania are at odds with one another, thus special care must be taken while dealing with assets subject to both countries' laws[9]. In order to achieve a just distribution, it may be necessary to develop unique solutions for each jurisdiction.
  • To respond to Marge's claim within the Property (Relationships) Act of 1976, Mr. Burns ought to have prepared. Although the scope of this Act is limited to property located in New Zealand, it has the potential to have far-reaching effects on how an estate is ultimately distributed.
  • Marge's participation to the relationship with Homer along with whether or not her claim is in conformity with the Act's requirements may be used by legal professionals to determine the validity of her claim.
  • Mr. Burns should be willing to negotiate or seek mediation to obtain a fair settlement that takes into account Marge's valid claims while also preserving the desires of other beneficiaries.
  • It is crucial to have Bart, Lisa, Maggie, and Marge's buy-in for the distribution strategy by giving them all enough notice and a chance to express their approval or disapproval.
  • Open and upfront interaction with the beneficiaries is vital to minimise conflicts and to guarantee that the estate's distribution matches with their objectives[7].
  • When beneficiaries have disagreements or arguments, it might be helpful to have a lawyer mediate the situation so that reasonable solutions can be found.
  • Mr. Burns should keep detailed records of all the choices he makes as executor of the estate. These documents should contain information of legal counsel obtained, correspondence with beneficiaries, and any agreements or resolves achieved.
  • In case of future problems, disagreements, or legal investigations, it will be crucial to have documentation of decisions and activities performed[8].
  • The executor's position may be protected and the estate can be divided in accordance with the law if proper records are kept, demonstrating openness and care in the administration of the estate.


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BINDER, Peter. International commercial arbitration and mediation in UNCITRAL Model Law jurisdictions. Kluwer Law International BV, 2019.

KNOWLER, Stephanie. Taming the Unruly Horse: The Public Policy Exception in Private International Law in the Context of Human Rights. 2018. PhD Thesis. University of Otago,.

WASS, Jack; HOOK, Maria. The Hague Conventions on International Civil Procedure—The Case for Accession. New Zealand Law Review, 2023, 2023.1: 99-133.

WOLF, Patrick J.; MACEDO, Stephen (ed.). Educating citizens: International perspectives on civic values and school choice. Brookings Institution Press, 2004.

MOUSOURAKIS, George. Comparative Law and Legal Traditions. Springer International Publishing, 2019.

VON BAR, Christian. Foundations of Property Law: Things As Objects of Property Rights. Oxford University Press, 2023.

ORTIZ, Marcelo, et al. Inheritance tax, shareholder protection, and the market value of family firms: A cross‐country analysis. Global strategy journal, 2021, 11.3: 434-467.

AZZI, Amanda. Reproductive Rights and Oppression in Marge Piercy's Utopia. 2022.

Related Topic: Private International Law

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