Foreign Laws Law and Legal Definition

Foreign laws are those laws enacted and in force in a foreign state or country. The courts do not judicially take notice of foreign laws and so they must be proved as facts.Such proof varies according to circumstances.

Foreign unwritten laws, customs and usages are ordinarily proved by parol evidence. The public seal of a foreign sovereign or state affixed to a writing purporting to be a written edict, law, or judgment is the highest evidence and no further proof is required of such public seal. But the seal of a foreign court is not evidence without further proof and must therefore be established by competent testimony.

The effect of such foreign laws must be properly referable to the court. The object of the proof of foreign laws is to facilitate the court to instruct the jury what is, in position of law, the effect from foreign laws, to be applied to the matters in disagreement before them. The court is therefore to decide what is the proper evidence of the laws of a foreign country, and when evidence is given of those laws, the court is to judge of their applicability to the matter in issue.