On 20th March 2019, the Brazilian Federal Government enacted Decree No. 9,734/19 ratifying the wording of the Convention on service abroad of judicial and extrajudicial documents in civil or commercial matters, subscribed by Brazil in Hague, on 15th November 1965.

With the accession of Brazil, the Convention now has 74 contracting countries and aims to create appropriate means to ensure that judicial and extrajudicial documents which should be object of service, summons or notification abroad between signatory countries are made aware to the recipient in a timely manner, improving the organization of mutual legal assistance between such signatory countries in order to simplify and expedite the service process.

Currently such service in Brazil is effected pursuant to the Inter-American Convention on Letters Rogatory (IAC). However, service under the IAC is arduous for a number of reasons, including (but not limited to): the documents to be served must be duly legalized, the translation must be legalized, the Court Clerk must sign the IAC application forms, and many (perhaps most) clerks have never seen an IAC application form. Thus a lot of time is spent educating the clerks on IAC procedure.

Moreover, the proper preparation of an IAC application for service in Brazil can easily take several months. Once the documents arrive in Brazil, the Brazilian Central Authority will then take 6 to 12 months to effect service and an additional 6 to 12 months thereafter to return the proof of service.

Once such service in Brazil shifts to the Hague procedure, it will be also less expensive since legalization will no longer be required.

Completion of forms will also be more expeditious without the need for legalization, and because the Court Clerk will no longer be required to submit an extensive application.

The Convention will enter into force in Brazil on 1st June 2019.