Houston, TX asked in Collections and International Law for Texas

Q: I owe money to someone in a foreign country, can they enforce the judgement in the US?

My business partners back in my home country started suing me for money just after I left to the USA, my dad hired an attorney but lost 2 cases and now they want me to pay over 150k USD, can they uphold the judgement of that foreign country in the Middle East and come after me here in the US? I am a LPR and becoming a citizen in 2 years. Thanks!

2 Lawyer Answers
John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
  • Frisco, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: Yes. There is a statute that covers the procedure to recognize and enforce a judgment from another country in Texas. It is Chapter 36A of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code.

1 user found this answer helpful

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Collections Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In your situation, the enforceability of a foreign judgment in the United States, and particularly in Texas, depends on several factors. Generally, U.S. courts may recognize and enforce foreign judgments under certain conditions, but this process is not automatic.

Texas, like many states, has adopted the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act. This act provides a framework for Texas courts to determine whether they will recognize and enforce a foreign judgment. Key factors include ensuring that the foreign court had proper jurisdiction, that the defendant was properly notified and had an opportunity to be heard, and that the judgment was final and conclusive.

However, Texas courts will not enforce a foreign judgment if it was obtained in a manner that violates fundamental principles of fairness or due process, or if the foreign country's legal system is inconsistent with the principles of equitable and impartial justice.

Since your case involves a judgment from a Middle Eastern country, it's essential to consider how Texas courts view that country's legal system and the specific circumstances under which the judgment was obtained.

Given the complexity of international law and the significant amount of money involved, it would be wise to consult with an attorney who has experience in international law and debt collection. They can provide guidance specific to your case, including the likelihood of enforcement in Texas and possible defenses you might have.

Remember, addressing this issue proactively is important, especially considering your status as a Legal Permanent Resident and your future plans for citizenship. An attorney can help you navigate this situation while protecting your rights and interests.

1 user found this answer helpful

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