Extraterritorial survey 2014: Morocco

Author: | Published: 2 Sep 2014
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SECTION 1: CONTRACTS

  • The contracts concerned are mainly loan contracts, guarantees, derivatives and other financial contracts.
JURISDICTION CONTRACTS
1. Local presence of defendant
2. Local presence of director of corporate defendant
3. Local branch, even if claim unconnected to branch
4. Defendant does business locally, eg enters into contracts or has meetings
5. Contract made locally
6. Contract governed by local law
7. Contract performable locally
8. Local nationality or domicile of plaintiff
9. Local assets, however small


Expand on your jurisdiction's treatment of contract breaches. This includes, where applicable, explanation of courts' discretion and the types of contract that would apply.

Box 2: The temporary presence of a director of a non-Moroccan domiciled corporate defendant is not sufficient to decide whether to exercise jurisdiction.

All commercial and financial contracts would apply with no exceptions.

The Moroccan courts may hear proceedings brought in respect of a contract against a defendant domiciled out of the jurisdiction in the situations described above.

Moroccan courts might take jurisdiction over defendants domiciled out of the jurisdiction, depending on the type of contracts and international rules involved. Cases are analysed individually to determine whether to exercise jurisdiction.

It should be noted that there are other situations in which the Moroccan courts might take jurisdiction over defendants domiciled out of the jurisdiction: (i) contracts containing a jurisdiction clause conferring jurisdiction on Moroccan courts, and, (ii) certain claims for provisional measures.

Box 9: The presence of assets alone is not sufficient, however if the whole subject matter of a claim relates to assets located within the jurisdiction, the Moroccan courts may exercise their discretion to take jurisdiction, especially in real estate matters.

SECTION 2: TORTS/DELICTS

  • Torts or delicts include such wrongs as misselling financial products or misrepresentation in an offering circular.
  • The table disregards EU or EEA and common jurisdictional rules.
JURISDICTION TORTS/CIVIL WRONGS
1. Local presence of defendant
2. Local presence of director of corporate defendant
3. Local branch, even if claim unconnected to branch
4. Defendant does business locally, eg enters into contracts or has meetings
5. Tort committed locally
6. Tort governed by local law
7. Local nationality or domicile of plaintiff
8. Local assets, however small
9. Other


Expand on your jurisdiction's treatment of torts or delicts. This includes, where applicable, explanation of courts' discretion, further explanation of the applicable torts, or other relevant factors.

Box 2: The temporary presence of a director of a non-Moroccan domiciled corporate defendant is not sufficient to decide whether to exercise jurisdiction.

In principle, in the case of both torts and delicts, the jurisdiction is based on the territoriality principle.

Box 4: The Moroccan court may take jurisdiction if tort harm is suffered locally.

The Moroccan courts might take jurisdiction in all situations in which torts/delicts are committed locally.

However, there are circumstances in which Moroccan courts might take jurisdiction in relation to a tort claim over a defendant domiciled out of the jurisdiction: (i) if the contract provides a clause that confers jurisdiction on the Moroccan courts, or, (ii) in the case of certain claims for injunctive relief or for interim remedies.

Box 8: The presence of assets alone is not sufficient, however if the whole subject matter of a claim relates to assets located within the jurisdiction, the Moroccan courts may exercise their discretion to take jurisdiction, especially in real-estate matters.

SECTION 3: INSOLVENCY – INDIVIDUALS OR CORPORATES

  • This table disregards consumer transactions.
  • It also does not include EU or EEA and common jurisdictional rules, eg the EC Insolvency Regulation of 2002.
JURISDICTION INSOLVENCY OF INDIVIDUALS OR CORPORATES
1. Local presence of the debtor (who is an individual/natural person)
2. Local presence of director of the debtor (who is not an individual/person)
3. Debtor has a local branch, even if creditor’s claim is unconnected to branch
4. Debtor does business locally, eg contracts or meetings locally
5. Contract on which claim is based is made locally
6. Contract on which claim is based is governed by local law
7. Contract on which claim is based is performable locally
8. Local nationality or domicile of creditor
9. Debtor has local assets, however small
10. Other


Expand on your jurisdiction's treatment of insolvent companies and individuals. This can include, where applicable, explanation of courts' discretion, or other relevant factors.

Box 2: If the director is considered liable for the liabilities of the undertaking in an action en comblement de passif, as provided for by Moroccan insolvency procedures, the Moroccan courts may take jurisdiction.


The Moroccan courts may exercise their jurisdiction in insolvency matters where the principal establishment of the individual or the head office of the company is located in Morocco.

Box 9: If the whole subject matter of a claim relates to assets located within the jurisdiction, the Moroccan courts may exercise their discretion to take jurisdiction, if the local assets were construed as a permanent establishment (PE).

About the author

Dr Kamal Habachi
HB Law Firm

T: +212 522 47 37 02
E: kamal@hblaw.ma

Dr Kamal Habachi is a corporate partner at HB Law Firm. He is admitted to the Casablanca Bar Association. He received his PhD from a French University.

Dr Habachi has significant experience in M&A transactions, commercial contracts and restructuring.

He specialises in corporate law, finance law, contract law, and securities law. Habachi speaks four languages: Arabic, French, English and Spanish.


About the author

Salima Bakouchi
HB Law Firm

T: +212 522 47 41 93
E: s.bakouchi@hblaw.ma

Salima Bakouchi is a partner at HB Law Firm. She was admitted to the Casablanca Bar Association in 1995. She worked in one of the leading law firms in Morocco, where she gained valuable experience as a legal advisor in different sectors.

Bakouchi has handled a wide range of transactions in various sectors and conducted many seminars in copyright, consumer law and competition law both in Morocco and abroad.

She is specialised in intellectual property law, finance & banking law, corporate law, administrative law, labour law, commercial law, competition law and ADR. Bakouchi speaks three languages: Arabic, French and English.


 

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