Without prejudice to the provisions of Article 22, nothing in this Convention shall be construed as limiting any rights in respect of matters governed by this Convention which may be conferred upon a person under the law of any Contracting State or under any other convention to which it is, or becomes, a party.
Between Parties to this Convention who are also Parties to one or both of theConventions on civil procedure signed at The Hague on the 17th of July 1905 and the 1st of March 1954, this Convention shall replace Articles 17 to 24 of the Convention of 1905 or Articles 17 to 26 of the Convention of 1954 even if the reservation provided for under paragraph 2 c) of Article 28 of this Convention has been made.
Supplementary agreements between Parties to the Conventions of 1905 and 1954 shall be considered as equally applicable to the present Convention, to the extent that they are compatible therewith, unless the Parties otherwise agree.
A Contracting State may by declaration specify a language or languages other than those referred to in Articles 7 and 17 in which documents sent to its Central Authority may be drawn up or translated.
A Contracting State which has more than one official language and cannot, for reasons of internal law, accept for the whole of its territory documents referred to in Articles 7 and 17 drawn up in one of those languages shall by declaration specify the language in which such documents or translations thereof shall be drawn up for submission in the specified parts of its territory.
If a Contracting State has two or more territorial units in which different systems of law are applicable in relation to matters dealt with in this Convention, it may at the time of signature, ratification, acceptance, approval or accession declare that this Convention shall extend to all its territorial units or only to one or more of them and may modify that declaration by submitting another declaration at any time.
Any such declaration shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and shall state expressly the territorial units to which the Convention applies.
Where a Contracting State has a system of government under which executive, judicial and legislative powers are distributed between central and other authorities within that State, its signature or ratification, acceptance, or approval of, or accession to this Convention, or its making of any declaration under Article 26 shall carry no implication as to the internal distribution of powers within that State.
Any Contracting State may, at the time of signature, ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, reserve the right to exclude the application of Article 1 in the case of persons who are not nationals of a Contracting State but who have their habitual residence in a Contracting State other than the reserving State or formerly had their habitual residence in the reserving State, if there is no reciprocity of treatment between the reserving State and the State of which the applicants for legal aid are nationals.
Any Contracting State may, at the time of signature, ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, reserve the right to exclude –
a) the use of English or French, or both, under paragraph 2 of Article 7;
b) the application of paragraph 2 of Article 13;
c) the application of Chapter II;
d) the application of Article 20.
Where a State has made a reservation –
e) under paragraph 2 a) of this Article, excluding the use of both English and French, any other State affected thereby may apply the same rule against the reserving State;
f) under paragraph 2 b) of this Article, any other State may refuse to apply paragraph 2 of Article 13 to persons who are nationals of or habitually resident in the reserving State;
g) under paragraph 2 c) of this Article, any other State may refuse to apply Chapter II to persons who are nationals of or habitually resident in the reserving State.
No other reservation shall be permitted.
Any Contracting State may at any time withdraw a reservation it has made. The withdrawal shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The reservation shall cease to have effect on the first day of the third calendar month after the notification.
Every Contracting State shall, at the time of the deposit of its instrument of ratification or accession, or at a later date, inform the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands of the designation of authorities pursuant to Articles 3, 4 and 16.
It shall likewise inform the Ministry, where appropriate, of the following –
a) declarations pursuant to Articles 5, 9, 16, 24, 25, 26 and 33;
b) any withdrawal or modification of the above designations and declarations;
c) the withdrawal of any reservation.
The model forms annexed to this Convention may be amended by a decision of a Special Commission convoked by the Secretary General of the Hague Conference to which all Contracting States and all Member States shall be invited. Notice of the proposal to amend the forms shall be included in the agenda for the meeting.
Amendments adopted by a majority of the Contracting States present and voting at the Special Commission shall come into force for all Contracting States on the first day of the seventh calendar month after the date of their communication by the Secretary General to all Contracting States.
During the period provided for by paragraph 2 any Contracting State may by notification in writing to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands make a reservation with respect to the amendment. A Party making such reservation shall until the reservation is withdrawn be treated as a State not a Party to the present Convention with respect to that amendment.