Say I drive to Mexico and someone punches me in the face; I want to sue them for it.

Do I have the right to sue them under Mexican law, meaning I can begin legal action within that country not as a citizen? Would it have to settle differently?

Mexico is just an example. I'm sure there's a more general answer to this with regards to some kind of international laws, or perhaps a normal right.

1 Answer 1


Yes, in most jurisdictions citizenship or residency is not a pre-requisite for standing.

However, be aware that there are plenty of jurisdictions where the practical effect of being non-native gives you effectively no chance of winning. "Fair" in some countries means their citizens always beat foreigners.

  • Not being a resident has obvious disadvantages as well, even if everything is fair. A Japanese citizen living in New York will have no problems suing you in New York. A US citizen living in Japan (US citizen, but not resident) will have huge practical problems suing you in New York.
    – gnasher729
    Feb 14, 2016 at 11:44
  • @gnasher729 when the Commonwealth Bank (one of Australia's Big 4) banks went into business in Indonesia they were told by their local partners, "Don't go to court here, the locals always win"
    – Dale M
    Feb 14, 2016 at 20:08
  • Ah yes, why the British empire used to intervene when some podunk country's corrupt courts found very badly for their citizens.
    – Joshua
    Mar 27, 2017 at 18:58

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