One does not simply walk into Mordor.  Likewise, one does not simply read a treaty and call it good.  In order to ascertain the full scope of an international agreement, you’ve got to dig deeper and look to the reservations a country makes when it signs on to a treaty.

At its core, a treaty

No, really.  The Hague Convention is a myth.  Likewise the Geneva Convention and the Vienna Convention.  There are more than one of each, and referring to one of them that way is ambiguous.  (Yes, yes, if you mention the full name earlier in a text, you’re okay to truncate.)

Of course, we lawyers love ambiguity—it’s

Write this down.  There is no such thing as “The Hague Convention”.*

It’s like a unicorn or the Tooth Fairy or Rodents of Unusual Size.

Sorry, but it just doesn’t exist, so citing “The Hague Convention” is more than just sloppy vocabulary.  That sloppiness can make the wheels fall off the procedural wagon,

The Hague, Netherlands.  November 10, 2016.

I’m in the small city in Holland that is both the Dutch political capital and the center of global  jurisprudence.  Home to the International Court of Justice, it is also where some three dozen international agreements—the Hague Conventions—have been formulated to harmonize cross-border legal doctrines in private law

I spent the better part of last week railing against (and about) doctors.  This is not a rant against the medical profession, although it may seem so.  Rather, it is a comparative view of our two little guild monopolies and their mirror-image foibles.

My mother was hospitalized recently, and I very quickly concluded that specialists

Sometimes as a blog comes together, memories sneak from the back of the mind to the front, and they prompt a quick Google search.  Sometimes that search brings bad news.  Nobody likes to see an obituary at the top of the results.

When I was twenty-two years old, fresh out of college, I snagged a

[Originally published at vikinglaw.us]

The divide between the common law and the civil law tradition is the transnational attorney’s greatest conundrum, greatest source of consternation, even the greatest inhibitor to fair & equitable dispute resolution in global commerce. And it is not going away. As such, at least a basic understanding of the differences

Here’s another distinction that only a lawyer could love.  Oddly enough, I only hear lawyers (and other professionals in the legal industry) use the erroneous terminology “through the Hague.”  Laypersons really have no need.

Not to be pedantic,* but our industry lives and dies by the sword of precise language, so let this hone your