Justice Home The Constitution Flag

International Legal Obligations

Home> About> International Legal Obligations

Service of Process

Home l About the Unit l Contact Details l Service of Process l Documents l Scope of Work l Treaties l Extraditions l Bilateral agreements l International Maintenance l The Hague Convention l Links


1.1       A firm of attorneys seeking documents to be served in any foreign country shall follow this procedure:

1.2      For DoJ&CD, Chief Directorate: International Legal Relations, the procedure is as follows:

1.3      The documents shall be received by DIRCO and they shall acknowledge receipt thereof.

1.4       DIRCO shall forward such documents to the South African High Commission of the relevant foreign country for service.

1.5       The South African High Commission in the relevant foreign country shall request the judicial authorities of that country to serve the documents on the Defendant on their behalf.

1.6       After the documents were served they will be returned to DIRCO and, DIRCO will forward them back to DoJCD for onward transmission to the Registrar. (THE ABOVE IS CALLED DIPLOMATIC CHANNELS)

1.7       As far as the time frames are concerned, that is, how long it will take for the documents to be served abroad, DoJ&CD cannot determine that.

1.8       As far as Sherriff fees are concerned for service abroad, the “Return of Service” and certificate of the Sheriff will indicate the amount due for service. DoJ&CD cannot determine that.

1.9       For any progress on such matters attorneys shall enquire from the office of the Registrar.

Updated: 19 Nov 2019