Process Server of Court Papers in Thailand
We have been asked to "serve papers" in Thailand for overseas court litigation, including for various states in the United States of America, as well as for court cases in the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. We can go anywhere in Thailand, and have been a process server in Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, and other locations, including driving way upcountry and down dirt roads.
Most of our service of process cases have been serving papers to individuals for divorce or other personal litigation. We can also serve to a registered company or corporation (to an executive or appropriate person holding a senior position).
Private process servers are used because Thailand is not a signatory to the Hague Service Convention, i.e., The Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters. Thai officials usually do not serve foreign courts or take interest in personal court matters overseas, unless you go through diplomatic channels, which can take a very long time and might not succeed. Otherwise, it is left to the private sector to handle foreign service of process. By contacting a private process server, you can get much quicker service, constant updates, immediate feedback in regard to on the ground experience, and possibly extra perseverance and methods -- compared to a diplomatic channel ultimately using a local court and their process server in a routine with the result and any feedback going back through diplomatic channel layers. Lawyers and plaintiffs involved in many overseas court cases have come directly to us as private investigators to find the defendant and serve papers for the overseas court.
We need at least one good photo to help identify the person, and of course one or more locations or leads to find them. We may also review requirements of your particular overseas jurisdiction for serving the person. Even though it's usually not required to get a photo of the person served at the time of service, we usually try to get video and/or photos anyway. Normally, we sign an affidavit of service. If a notarized document is required, then we can try going to your embassy or else for sure we can use a Thai Notarial Services Attorney. A Thai Notarial Services Attorney is customary in Thailand. Our office is located in the part of the city center near many embassies, including:
- 1.3 km to British Embassy
- 1.5 km to New Zealand
- 1.7 km to American Embassy (less by walking shortcut, or ~500 meters by straight line)
- 2.5 km to Australian Embassy
Most service attempts go fairly normally and economically, whereby the person is handed the papers and accepts them. They may or may not yet be aware of the court filing before we serve the papers. However, sometimes a defendant is aware of the court case and an impending attempt to serve papers to them, but wants to avoid being served.
Some of our cases have been for a Thai mother's new husband overseas to be able to adopt her children from a biological father who has not been taking care of them. If the Thai biological father is cooperative in terminating his parental rights, such as for the best interests of the child, then we may be able to just call him and meet him to serve the papers.
Cases of plaintiffs filing for divorce from their spouse can be different. If the defendant does not yet know about the filing and doesn't expect to be served, then usually it is a simple matter of finding their location and serving them at their residence or office or some other place where they are known or believed to be. Normally, we don't call them in advance. If we are not able to find them any other way, then we may consider calling them as a last resort and discuss this in advance with the plaintiff or law firm. However, divorce cases can get very litigious whereby a defendant might want to make it difficult for the plaintiff, especially if the defendant is aware of the divorce filing or a likely filing, either from the plaintiff's direct communications or else by gossip through the grapevine. It is best to minimize gossip and keep such discussions compartmentalized to only the people who need to know, and for everybody who knows to behave likewise.
If a defendant is expecting somebody to try to serve papers but wants to avoid the process server, for example, by hiding, looking out for, evading, and/or refusing to receive the documents we try to hand to them, then we have some methods for trying to handle that. Instead of knocking on their door, we might discreetly wait outside to serve them when they walk out. Many people will not open a door for strangers, and if they expect to be served papers, then they may tell others to mislead the process server about their whereabouts.
Our goal is to meet them face to face and hand them the papers. In some jurisdictions, if the person refuses to receive the documents we try to hand to them, then the documents may be dropped in front of them or in their immediate proximity, as long as it is made clear verbally that they have been identified by name, they are informed of the nature of the documents, and they have just been served papers. If you agree, then we can print in big bold letters their name and optionally their address and/or phone number and that this is a court matter and tape it to the outside of the document for a situation in which we must drop the document in front of them, whether it be on the street, in an elevator, or wherever.
Sometimes we research a person further in order to find them, and/or perform some surveillance in advance to find the best way to serve papers to them if you expect that they may try to be evasive and are expecting to be served papers.
You can also choose between a native English speaking man or an English speaking Thai lady for serving a foreigner, in most cases.
While usually not required, we may try to get video and/or photos, as a team or as an individual process server.
After we have served papers, we prepare an affidavit of service, which includes the identity of the process server, date, time, location, event of process serving to the defendant, and anything else required by your jurisdiction. If notarization is required, then we can provide this, such as in this example:
When people in Thailand simply say they will include a "notarized" signature, they usually mean that they will use a Thai Notarial Services Attorney, though they might not tell you that level of detail. If you prefer for a document to be notarized by a Notary Public at an embassy, then it is important to make this clear at the start. However, many courts will take whatever is customary in a country, which in Thailand is a Thai Notarial Services Attorney, regulated by the Lawyers Council of Thailand. Making an appointment at an embassy may take some time. Some embassies have been a little bit fussy at first, so we've had to push public servants properly to complete that process. We are not easily turned away, and can be diplomatically firm and articulate about protocols and details, which normally smooths things over quickly. However, obtaining an embassy Notary Public to witness a signature normally costs more, and takes longer, than for a Thai Notarial Services Attorney.
Sometimes a short and simple offer to serve papers and "notarize" closes more sales on the spot, but we have a fine attention to detail whereby we try to make things completely clear for your reference if necessary, and try to get things right the first time, without surprises or lingering questions later.
When we receive an inquiry, we often try to help the client if they wish, to assess everything, as we are experienced in these kinds of matters. If they instead just want us to simply go serve the papers and return the affidavit, that's fine, too. However, sometimes a client wants some additional guidance or analysis, and we may want to try to double check some things as regards the client's particular jurisdiction.
In most cases, we are able to find the person and serve the documents personally. However, sometimes the person is trying to evade the process of service, or may be hard to find otherwise. If we cannot find the person for serving papers personally within the allotted time period and number of attempts, then rather than simply quit and return, we can review with the client any option for "substituted service" such as leaving the documents with another suitable person at their residence or office, for example. For substituted service to be accepted, many jurisdictions require that first a reasonably due diligent effort be made to personally serve the defendant.
We try to help provide a solution in Thailand for clients.
Our clients are usually plaintiffs, petitioners, and law offices.
The end product is normally an affidavit of service, which we can scan and send by email such as for e-filing, and/or send it by FedEx or DHL if you wish.
If you have any other requirements, you may contact us to discuss them, or just call us at +66-8-0062-4243 anytime.
> Serve Court Papers
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Our company is located in central Bangkok on Sukhumvit soi 2, within walking distance of the skytrain, between the Ploenchit and Nana stations.
Thailand Private Investigations,
a division of:
Lucky Lion Pride Co., Ltd.
Ploymitr Office Building, Floor 7
81 Sukhumvit soi 2
By appointment only, please.
Sometimes, an agent can meet you at
your location (depends on location).
Email: inbox at our domain name.
Office Tel.: +66-2255-0620
Mobile Tel.: +66-8-0062-4243 (native English speaker)
Old customers please note:
We moved our office from Pakkred, Nonthaburi (next to the government post office) to the city center. Please do not go out to our old office in Pakkred, on Bond Street. We are no longer there.
Our office is co-located with Export Quality Services Co., Ltd., aka EQ, which is the same company we previously operated under, but we split off the private investigations business to a daughter company, Lucky Lion Pride Co., Ltd., whereby EQ now focuses on language translation and some other things.
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2023 public website, expat in Thailand since 1994.