Universalism in cross-border bankruptcies strives to reduce waste, and harmonize restructuring and recoveries. Universalism’s avatar is UNCITRAL’s 1997 Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvencies (Model Law). Underlying the Model Law, however, is an implicit assumption that court orders entered in the proceeding where the debtor’s center of main interests is located will be respected in all other states in which the debtor has assets or operations. That assumption may have been incorrect, as shown by cases such as the United Kingdom’s Rubin v. Eurofinance, S.A.

This Article looks at UNCITRAL’s reaction to Rubin: its new Model Law on Recognition and Enforcement of Insolvency-Related Judgments (Recognition Law). It examines the Recognition Law’s reciprocity provisions, and examines the likely operation of such provisions both practically (by analyzing complex debtor in possession financing orders) and theoretically (by examining theories of translation first discussed by W.V.O. Quine). The Article concludes by expressing deep pessimism that the Recognition Law will solve the perceived problems with Model Law.