Serving a Tawainese Defendant by Mail

Serving a Taiwanese Defendant by Mail

If you need to serve a foreign defendant, particularly in Taiwan, there are several factors you must take into consideration. Specifically, properly serving a foreign defendant requires complying with United States law, the law of the defendant’s home country, and any international treaty that may exist between the two nations. All of these must be considered to ensure that the international service of process is enforceable.
From a logistical and practical point of view, initiating international litigation can be both time-consuming and costly in most situations. As a result, the service of process by mail has become increasingly popular, according to a National Law Review (NLR) article. This is because service by mail is a more manageable and streamlined method for delivering legal documents to overseas entities.

Service by Mail
There have been disputes regarding whether service of process by mail to Taiwanese defendants is allowed under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP). Rule 4(f), in particular, allows an individual in a foreign country to be served by using any form of mail that requires a signed receipt, unless prohibited by the laws of the foreign country.
When it comes to service upon a defendant located in Taiwan, the “gold standard” for international service of process is service via letters rogatory. Letters rogatory requires the party serving the lawsuit to have the complaint translated into Mandarin Chinese as well as obtaining permission from both the American and Taiwanese courts. A majority of American courts addressing the question of whether a defendant in Taiwan can be properly served via mail have answered in the affirmative unless doing so is expressly prohibited by Taiwanese law or any international agreement.

Case Decisions
Recent decisions by American courts have confirmed that service of process by mail can be properly effectuated on a defendant located in Taiwan, and other foreign nations.

● In SignalQuest, Inc. v. Tien-Ming Chou & Oncque Corp, the court held that service of process via mail by FedEx was permissible because Taiwanese law does not expressly prohibit this method;
● In Tatung Co. v. Shu Tze Hsu, the court held that service by mail was proper because the U.S. and Taiwan have not signed any agreements or treaties regarding service of process from American courts, and no international agreements expressly prohibited service of process by mail;
● In Ryan v. Brunswick Corp. the court held that service of process via email or mail to a defendant in Taiwan was proper because no international agreements between the U.S. and Taiwan prohibited these methods.

Serving Your International Litigation Needs
If you need assistance effectuating service of process on a Taiwainese defendant or any defendant that is in a foreign nation, contact Ancillary Legal right away.

If you need assistance with depositions, court reporting, or videography, contact Elizabeth Gallo Court Reporting today.