The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) was an original signatory to the Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters, also called the Hague Service Convention, signed on December 10, 1965. The treaty entered into force for the UK on February 10, 1969.
US attorneys seeking service in the United Kingdom would be wise to familiarize themselves with the mandatory character of the Convention as set forth in the US Supreme Court case Volkswagenwerk A.G. v. Schlunk, 486 US 694 (1988).
Canadian attorneys should consult provincial precedent — Canadian courts take a more nuanced view of the Convention, but effectively reach the same conclusion: its limitations must be observed. Regardless of forum court requirements, the service rules of the receiving country must be observed, or enforcement of a judgment may become impossible.
LLS has extensive experience effecting Hague service in the United Kingdom; call us at 1-800-755-5775 to discuss options.