Argentina’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day in the Supreme Court

June 16, 2014

Monday was not a good day for Argentina at the U.S. Supreme Court. In Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital, the court held 7 to 1 that the Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act (FSIA) does not immunize a foreign-sovereign judgment debtor (in this case, Argentina) from post-judgment discovery of information concerning its extraterritorial assets.  At issue was whether Argentina’s creditors could obtain discovery about Argentina’s assets outside the United States, even if some or all of these assets might be immune from judgment in a U.S. court.

Were that not enough, the Supreme Court also turned away Argentina’s effort to put another case before the court. In a similarly captioned case, Argentina sought Supreme Court review of a lower court injunction that inhibits Argentina’s ability to restructure its debts.  As I noted here, there was some question whether Argentina was willing to abide by an adverse court judgment, which may have influenced the Supreme Court’s willingness to grant its petition.

UPDATE: However bad today was for Argentina, I doubt they’ll make a movie about it.

FURTHER UPDATE: Argentina says it cannot afford to pay its creditors and that it will not submit to “extortion.”  More here.

Jonathan H. Adler teaches courses in constitutional, administrative, and environmental law at the Case Western University School of Law, where he is the inaugural Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Business Law and Regulation.
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Eugene Volokh · June 16, 2014