New York is a sophisticated international city, and a hub for international banking, finance, commerce, and culture. In 1993, the New York state courts established a Commercial Division to develop expertise in handling domestic and international commercial cases. Since then, the Commercial Division has repeatedly upgraded its rules and procedures to make itself a forum of choice for complex international and domestic matters. Parties entering into international commercial agreements should consider whether New York state is a viable option for dispute resolution. Indeed, foreign parties in commercial transactions with U.S. parties can often obtain important concessions on other issues in exchange for doing so.

International parties may also find themselves litigating in New York without advance choice. For example, when international contracts or business arrangements have no forum selection clause, New York may be the only (or the best) place to obtain personal jurisdiction over a defendant. Likewise, given the United States’ and New York’s relatively broad views of personal jurisdiction, foreign persons may find themselves hauled into court here, contrary to their expectations.