Effective immediately, if you wish to serve a commencement document in a foreign country that is a Contracting State to the Hague Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil and Commercial Matters [the “Hague Service Convention”], you must comply with the Hague Service Convention requirements.
A commencement document is a statement of claim, an originating application, a counterclaim, a third-party claim, and a claim under the Family Law Act that starts a new proceeding (Form FL-10). Although a Joint Statement of Claim for Divorce is a commencement document, it doesn’t need to be served, so the Hague Service Convention process doesn’t apply.
You can find an up-to-date list of the Contracting States at:
Please refer to the Court of Queen's Bench webpage Service Outside of Canada (Includes Hague Service Convention) for detailed information and links to both forms and information Booklets. A summary of the links, with access to the main documents, may also be found below:
1. Service Outside of Canada Flow Chart
2. Table of Contracting States to the Hague Service Convention: This document lists all the Hague Contracting States, the types of service they permit, and whether their Central Authority requires translation. This document has been prepared for convenience only and is not regularly updated. The Applicant should always refer to https://www.hcch.net/en/instruments/conventions/authorities1/?cid=17
for the most current information on the requirements for each Contracting State:
3. Instruction Booklet for Service Outside of Canada (Hague Service Convention)
4. Affidavits and Orders for Service Outside of Canada
a) Affidavit and Order - Service Outside of Canada: These documents apply when the country is not a Contracting State; when the document is not a commencement document; or when the country does not object to personal service under Article 10. Booklet
b) Affidavit and Order - Substitutional Service Outside of Canada: These documents apply when the applicant wants to serve substitutionally because they do not have the respondent's address; the country is not a Contracting State; the document is not a commencement document; or the country does not object to other forms of service under Article 10, including service by mail. Booklet
c) Affidavit and Order for Service Outside of Canada (Hague Service Convention - Central Authority): These documents apply when the applicant must (or chooses to) serve through the foreign Central Authority. Booklet
d) Affidavit and Order for Service Outside of Canada (with Consent): These documents apply to those parties who are able to obtain the respondent's consent to service. The law on consent is unsettled, but some Masters may grant orders for service when presented with evidence that the Respondent consented to receive the documents. Booklet
5. Affidavit of Service (Hague Service Convention): This affidavit of service is specific to service through the Central Authority. All other forms of service can prove service using a regular Affidavit of Service.