Service of Process Abroad

Photo by May Gauthier on Unsplash

Lawsuits against various TikTok entities– in particular its parent company, ByteDance Ltd.– have come at a steady trickle over the past several years.  Lately, though, we’re seeing a dramatic surge, as individuals and state attorneys general seek redress over potential privacy violations stemming from the platform’s use and alleged data harvesting by the Chinese government.  The steady trickle is turning into a swift current.Continue Reading How to Serve TikTok, via Wikimedia Commons.  The height of irony, this credit.

We’ve seen a big uptick lately in disputes over cryptocurrency platforms– many of which are legit, and many of which are complete scams.  The sudden (though, come on–  not realistically unexpected) bankruptcy filing of FTX last week promises to kick the issue into overdrive.  To be sure, this is not yet another obligatory Sam Bankman-Fried post.  It really was scheduled two weeks ago.
Continue Reading Cryptocurrency suits and service abroad

Photo by Kirk Slow on Unsplash

At least two or three times a month, I’ll get a call or email that starts off like this:

“Hi, Aaron.  I need to serve two defendants in Canada– an entity and an individual.  Can you help us out?”

First question out of my mouth (after saying “you betcha”):  Is it a trucking case?

“Yeah.  How’d you know?”
Continue Reading Trucking injury cases and service in Canada

Spalentor City Gate, Basel, Switzerland.

Personal injury cases surrounding the Syngenta-manufactured herbicide Paraquat have been ongoing across the continent in recent years, most alleging that plaintiffs contracted Parkinson’s Disease due to exposure to the chemical.  I set aside discussion of the merits of the various cases (I’m a procedural guy, and only rarely have a chance to get involved in substantive elements of a suit), but a huge story broke this morning in The Guardian that makes me think more suits are likely in the near and long-term future.  (See “Secret files suggest chemical giant feared weedkiller’s link to Parkinson’s disease” and see also the manufacturer’s statement regarding press surrounding the cases, current as of this writing.) 
Continue Reading How to Serve Syngenta

Colonia Tovar, Aragua, Venezuela. Photo by Jorge Salvador on Unsplash

I say all the time that we’re not building rockets here.  But we are building a ship of sorts, and a ship that can’t keep water out means cargo doesn’t make it to its destination.  Serving process in Venezuela is subject to the strictures of the Hague Service Convention, regardless of which U.S. or Canadian venue is hearing the matter. 
Continue Reading How to Serve Process in Venezuela

Tblisi City Assembly. Mostafa Meraji, via Unsplash.

[Ahem… we’re talking here about the European nation with Tbilisi as its capital– not the American state between Alabama and the Atlanta Atlantic Ocean.]

As of January 1, 2022, the Hague Service Convention is in effect for the Republic of Georgia, so service of process there is subject to the strictures of the Hague Service Convention.
Continue Reading How to Serve Process in Georgia

(Author’s note… we’ve just returned from two weeks in Scotland, and were to have posted this on September 16th, but held publication until after the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.  We were in Edinburgh, a mere hundred miles away, when she passed on September 8th, and Edinburgh’s rainy, gray evening seemed appropriate.  This is not an obituary, but publication is held until after the ceremony out of respect.)  
Continue Reading “Where?” is the most important question: The United Kingdom

Photo by Zoë Reeve on Unsplash

In the lion’s share of cases, I recommend to clients that, in Hague jurisdictions where they’re available, a higher cost service option may actually end up saving their clients a chunk of change in the long run.  In just about all of those jurisdictions, we charge considerably more to have a defendant served privately than if we go through government channels; that’s just the way things work.  But the initial price tag can be deceiving. 
Continue Reading *Of course* it costs more, but go 10(b) if you can.

Edward Orde, via Wikimedia Commons.

<— Unless this thing used to fly over the jurisdiction where you’re serving, odds are pretty high that you’ll have to translate in order to satisfy the requirements of the destination jurisdiction under the Hague Service Convention.  In most places, there’s no getting around it, even if your defendant was born in Chicago and taught Shakespeare for thirty years before settling in the Kobe Prefecture or a quaint village just outside Palermo.  If you intend to serve him, foreign authorities will require a translation.
Continue Reading Beware the lowest translation bidder– especially those who price by the page.

Alejandro Barba, via Unsplash.

From time to time, I catch myself ranting in this space.  Not in this post, though.  I had so many great conversations with clients today that my voice is hoarse.  And there were so many recurring themes in those conversations that I suddenly feel the need to share my top tips for serving overseas defendants, and also to create sort of a digest of the best pieces of advice I can give a litigator who doesn’t want to screw things up.
Continue Reading Seven Tips for Service Abroad