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In both European and US private international law the issue of joint tortfeasors' contribution or indemnification in multi-state conflict cases has been discussed vividly. However, neither European nor US case law and literature have been able to provide a comprehensive answer to the question which law should apply to joint tortfeasor contribution or indemnification issues. With the implementation of the Rome II Regulation, a unified private international law for non-contractual obligations in Europe has been established. In Art 20, the Regulation contains a seemingly clear-cut and simple rule. The provision, however, seems to be ill-conceived. The topic has been scarcely discussed during the law-making process. A literal construction and application of the rule may not provide a balanced choice-of-law determination. This article is supposed to give an overview of the European and US discussion on contribution and indemnification in multi-state conflict cases. It will explain the new provision in Art 20 Rome II, and analyse the underlying tort law purposes and party expectations that are relevant for the choice-of-law determination.
Hart Publishing launched the Journal of Private International Law (J. Priv. Int. L.) in spring 2005. The journal covers all aspects of private international law, reflecting the role of the European Union and the Hague Conference on Private International Law in the making of private international law, in addition to the traditional role of domestic legal orders.