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In the conflict of laws, the lex loci contractus is the Latin term for "law of the place where the contract is made".[1][2]


When a case comes before a court and all the main features of the case are local, the court will apply the lex fori, the prevailing municipal law, to decide the case. But if there are "foreign" elements to the case, the forum court may be obliged under the conflict of laws system to consider:

The lex loci contractus is one of the possible choice of law rules applied to cases testing the validity of a contract. For example, suppose that a person domiciled in Canada and a person habitually resident in France, make a contract by e-mail. They agree to meet in New York State to record a CD of hip hop music. The possibly relevant choice of law rules would be:


The provisions of this legal concept can be construed to confirm the following:

If a contract is consummated in one state but its content specifies that it is to be carried out in another state, two loci are thus generated: locus celebrate contractus (where it was signed) and locus solutionis (where it is to be performed). The laws of the locus celebrate contractus state will govern all matters concerning the mode of constructing the contract, the meaning of each factor therein, the nature of the contract, and its validity. The laws of the locus solutionis state will apply to the performance or execution of the contract.

Determination at law

Sometimes, the locus contractus is difficult to determine, for example if the contract was signed at sea or on a moving train or if the details of the contract signing were not well documented. If a court is called upon to determine the applicable state, it may use any or all of the following factors:

See also


  1. ^ Starr Printing Co. v. Air Jamaica, 45 F.Supp.2d. 625 (1999 U.S. Dist.)
  2. ^ Black's Law Dictionary abridged Sixth Edition (1991), p. 630.