Commercial Law — Company law — The right to sue

Date Citation Note
08.07.2003 Court of Cassation. Commercial Chamber Case Banque Internationale pour le Commerce et l’Industrie de la Guinée v. SARL Grégori Internationale Application for Review 00-21591 The Law of 30 May 1857 provides that foreign companies limited by shares (“sociétés de capitaux”) may not sue in French courts unless authorised to do so by decree. There is a large number of bilateral treaties which make this provision inoperative, but it has not been uncommon in the past for such companies incorporated in countries without such a bilateral agreement suddenly to find themselves barred in France. This decision effectively renders the Law of 30 May 1857 inoperative by holding that it is contrary to the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights and its additional protocol on the right of corporate persons of whatever nationality to be heard in an independent and impartial court.