International Service of Process in Argentina under the Hague Service Convention

Interesting fact: The name “Argentina” comes from the Latin word for silver: “Argentum.” Europeans believed Argentina was full of silver.

The Republic of Argentina ratified the Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Document in Civil or Commercial Matters, also called The Hague Service Convention, on February 2, 2001 and its provisions entered into effect on December 1, 2001.

(For general background on processes and the methods of service available under the Hague Service Convention, please click here.)

US attorneys seeking service in Argentina would be wise to familiarize themselves with the mandatory character of the Convention as set forth in Volkswagenwerk, A.G, v. Schlunk, 486 U.S. 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 requirements, the service rules of the receiving country must be observed, or enforcement of a judgment may become impossible.

Hague Service Issues Unique to Argentina

The Argentine government has explicitly designated the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship as the Central Authority. Service through the Central Authority is likely to be a slow process, taking six months or more to complete, although the assistance of a local counsel could expedite the execution of the Hague Service Request.

Translation Requirements

Argentina’s accession to the treaty explicitly mandates a translation of all documents into the Spanish language. Untranslated documents will not be accepted by the Central Authority.

Moreover, US notions of due process require that the defendant understand the documents served. If the defendant speaks neither English nor Spanish, a translation into a third language may even be necessary. US practitioners should explore this issue with our legal staff.

Central Authority

The Central Authority for Argentina is:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship
International Legal Assistance Department
Office of the Legal Advisor
Esmeralda 1212—4th Floor—Of. 402
1007 Buenos Aires
Telephone number: +54 (11) 4819-7385
Fax: +54 (11) 4819-7352

Service through Alternative Channels

Argentina has explicitly objected to the use of the methods of transmission listed in Article 10 of the Convention.

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