Objectives of the Hague Convention and exceptions


The role of the Central Authorities in each contracting State is to receive and act on requests for service or notification of documents originating from other contracting States.

The Hague Convention of 1965 has the following objectives:

  • to give the addressee of a document actual notice of the document in sufficient time;
  • to simplify the method of transmitting the document (alternative to diplomatic and consular courier); and
  • to facilitate proof of the delivery.

The documents may be judicial or court documents (such as an originating process, a defence, reply, rejoinder, petition, motion, or subpoena) or extrajudicial documents (such as a notarial deed, demand letter, or notice to debtor).


The Convention cannot be used for documents in penal, fiscal or administrative matters. Nor does the Convention apply where the address of the intended recipient of the document is unknown.


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