International Service of Process In The United Kingdom

International service of process in the United Kingdom (England and Wales, Ireland and Scotland) can be completed through both formal method of the Hague Service Convention as well as the informal method of service via agent. 


International service of process in the United Kingdom can be completed through the Hague Convention, which the United Kingdom signed on December 10, 1965, ratified on November 17, 1967 and put into force on February 10, 1969.

The United Kingdom requires personal service for individuals, but does permit service by mail under Article 10 for the registered offices of companies. 

If you are looking to serve a subpoena, that cannot be served under the Hague Service Convention and would instead need to be served through the Hague Evidence Convention. See Serving a Subpoena Under the Hague Convention for more information. 

Translation of Documents 

There is no requirement to translate documents as long as they are English. 

Sending documents to the proper Central Authority

The United Kingdom is comprised of three different judiciaries:

  • England and Wales
  • Ireland
  • Scotland

Each of these locations has a different Central Authority. Sending the initial documents to the incorrect one doesn’t necessarily mean the documents will get sent back, but it will cause a delay. 

The process for service under the Hague Convention in the United Kingdom

The proper forms and payment are sent to the Central Authority in the United Kingdom. Once the documents are sent to the Central Authority, you will not receive any updates until the proof of service or non-service is sent back to your office. 

For more information on what to expect during service under the Hague Convention, take a look at International Service of Process Under the Hague Convention


The United Kingdom does not allow for an informal method of service and as a result will not uphold a ruling or judgment where service has not been completed through the formal method. However, there are instances where service via agent will be adequate for a case. By going through the informal method, you can save considerable time and money in comparison to the formal method. 

To find out if your case can be handled through an informal method of service, contact us. 


Service in the United Kingdom is made easier in part by the fact that documents don’t need to be translated and known registered offices for corporations can be served by mail.

The staff of DGR Legal are not lawyers, nor is our organization a law firm. The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. Rather, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.  Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information.  

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