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Is Belize a member of the Hague Convention?

Attorneys and paralegals frequently ask “Is Belize a member of the Hague Convention?” The short answer is yes. However, the question is a bit more complicated than a simple yes.

The “Hague Convention” is a term that is used interchangeably for several different treaties that many countries are parties to. Overall, there are 42 “Hague Conventions”. The most commonly referred to treaty is the Service Treaty. The full name is The Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters. So when asking about the Service Convention, yes, Belize is a member.

This means that process service in Belize must conform to the protocols and requirements of the Convention. This is mandated by international law and the Supreme Court of the United States. However, Belize has gone one step further and declares that the only valid service is service through Article 5 of the Convention. Thus, Belize’s central authority is the only recognized agency for service. Even further, Belize has special requirements for their pleadings and transmittal of the service documents. Failure to comply with Belize’s requirements means you will lose time and money.

When you have a service request for Belize, make sure to hire someone that knows Belize’s rules. Belize routinely sends documents back to attorneys for improper failure to comply. Ancillary Legal knows how to avoid this problem.

Ancillary has decades of experience serving process in Belize. We have relationships with their agents and know exactly what they need for service. Ancillary guarantees its translations and submissions to Belize for accuracy to Belize’s specific requirements. We are happy to help you serve documents in Belize, with competitive prices, attorney reviewed documents, and decades of knowledge to make sure your request is not returned for improper submission.