CRITICAL ISSUES OF PROPER SERVICE UPON PARTIES UNDER THE HAGUE SERVICE CONVENTION IN RUSSIA-RELATED LITIGATION PROCEEDINGS
During recent years the Russian courts have confirmed their strict approach to formal notification about litigation of Russian parties and parties incorporated in other countries, which, as well as Russia, have joined the Hague Service Convention (Convention) and exercised the right of caveat against simplified procedure of service of process (Article 10 of the Convention).
This means that in some cases foreign parties with no presence in the territory of the jurisdiction where the litigation takes place may only be served with the notification through the official channel (e.g., the Russian Ministry of Justice); any alternative service (e.g., via post or courier) is insufficient.
If your litigation proceedings commenced in Russia or require recognition and enforcement in Russia, it is extremely important to understand how the aforementioned approach will affect your case.
Failure of recognition of foreign courts’ judgments in Russia due to improper service
The Russian state court will most probably refuse to recognise and enforce a foreign judgment if a Russian party to foreign proceedings: (i) was not duly notified through the Russian Ministry of Justice; (ii) was not represented in any hearing on the case; and (iii) did not provide the court with any pleadings, statements or documents.
Oct-Dec 2014 issue
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP