If I were to sign a freelancing contract with a person (client) from another country,

which country's jurisdiction should we agree upon?

I don't want to agree upon his country's law and he doesn't want to agree upon my country's law. Is there a neutral law that can be used here?

  • What should we put under the "law goverance" section?
  • What happens if we leave that section out altogether?


  • Out of interest, why don't you want to agree to his country's law? (Usually the contracts I sign are in the jurisdiction of whoever made the contract, perhaps I should reconsider changing my ways).
    – user152
    Oct 27 '14 at 17:33
  • What parts of his country law do you dislike and vice versa? You could write the terms of the contract to specifically address those laws. Sometimes, country contract laws apply as a default, when there is no specific agreement about a clause. To be picky, if you don't agree on governing law, you technically don't have a contract (an agreement between two or more parties...). Also, how willing are you to sue him in another country or vice versa if this actually becomes an issue?
    – user5226
    Oct 27 '14 at 18:19
  • @Stacey, the only issues are that I don't know anything about his country's law and that in the event of him suing me, I don't want to have to go to that country and spend money on traveling. If there is an international law that would be best :)
    – user5221
    Oct 27 '14 at 18:32
  • @BarryCarter, I don't know anything about his country's laws and vice versa. I don't have an intentions of suing him. If he doesn't pay me regularly I'll quit without making a fuss. But if he decides to sue me, I don't want to have to fly to his country.
    – user5221
    Oct 27 '14 at 18:34
  • @learner If both of you are willing to quit (if necessary) at any time, you could theoretically move forward without a contract, or with a "either party may terminate this contract at any time for any reason or for no reason whatsoever, at which point all existing obligations will cease". You could also add a "venue" clause saying that all legal disputes must be handled via mail or something like that. There's really no such thing as "international law". Nations are sovereign and don't accept any authority higher than their own. At best, you can look at international treaties/conventions, etc.
    – user5226
    Oct 27 '14 at 19:07

Have you considered (smile) using a third country's laws? This is VERY far fetched. But the choice of venue is important!

If you don't pick a venue, then typically a party that initiates legal action (in order to receive damages) must do it in the venue of the other party.

As the comments have stated, "international" law won't cut it. If it's going to be so difficult to agree on a venue, you basically don't have a usable contract because you don't have an underlying venue upon which to enforce the terms of said contract.

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