How The Central Authority Works in Morocco

The Kingdom of Morocco operates as a unitary semi-constitutional monarchy in North Africa’s Maghreb region. Legislative authority rests with the House of Representatives and the House of Councillors, while the King of Morocco and the prime minister head the executive branch. The Constitutional Court can evaluate the constitutionality of laws, elections, and referendums. With the advice of the prime minister and the constitutional court president, the king can dissolve parliament and exercise his extensive executive and legislative powers, particularly over matters of religion, foreign policy, and the military. His decrees, known as dahirs, are legally binding. Click here for How the Hague Convention Simplifies International Process Service.

The Hague Service Convention (or Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters) is the primary way to service of papers in Morocco. A private process service agency like Undisputed Legal can help serve your documents across the Kingdom of Morocco, regardless of where the defendant may be. Click Here for Frequently Asked Questions About Process Servers!

Government in Morocco

The politics of Morocco take place in a framework of an official parliamentary constitutional monarchy, whereby the prime minister of Morocco is the head of government and of a multi-party system. The government exercises executive power. Legislative power is vested in the government and the two chambers of parliament, the Assembly of Representatives of Morocco and the Assembly of Councillors. The Moroccan Constitution provides a monarchy with a Parliament and an independent judiciary.  Click here for information on How To Identify A Good Process Service Agency

The King has the authority to personally remove one or more government officials from their positions, subject to consultation with the Head of Government. Within the bounds of government solidarity, the minister must see that the government’s policies are implemented within their sectors. The Head of Government will delegate authority to the Ministers, who will then report on their progress to the Council of Government. Ministers have the authority to appoint secretaries of state to carry out some of their duties.  If a government official commits a crime while serving their official duties, they will be held criminally responsible by the Kingdom’s courts. Click here for information on How Rush Process Service Can Expedite Your Case.

Courts in Morocco 

There are both general and specialized courts in Morocco. There are three tiers to the ordinary courts: the Courts of First Instance; the s Courts of Appeal, which consider appeals from decisions made by the first-tier Courts of Instance; and the highest tier, the Cour de Cassation (Supreme Court), which decides solely on the substantive law and not the facts of the case. Additionally, there are specialized courts with a focus on administrative and commercial matters. Click here for information on How Service of Process Ensures A Solid Foundation.

The attorney representing the claimant must sign a writ to initiate court proceedings. A bailiff then delivers a copy to the accused. When there is reasonable suspicion that the owner of the assets may use them to evade a judgment and prima facie evidence of a strong case against them, judges have the authority to seize those assets pending judgment. They can appeal the decision within thirty days after the unsuccessful party receives judgment or order. This period is shortened to fifteen days for decisions made by commercial courts. Click here for information on How Process Servers Protect Your Rights: Myths Debunked

In theory, the decision’s enforcement is halted due to the appeal. In all cases involving an official instrument, an acknowledged obligation, the court must order immediate enforcement except for decisions that automatically benefit from immediate enforcement. Within thirty days of receiving notice of the appeal decision, parties can appeal to the Supreme Court. Supreme Court decisions are based on law, not facts, and the court can either accept an appeal (a pourvoi) or reject it (in the latter case, it reverses the lower court’s decision and sends the case back to it).

 Our Undisputed Legal process servers are familiar with the Moroccan legal system. There are particular regulations concerning the service of legal papers in Morocco’s civil law system, which is based on French legal traditions. Our Undisputed Legal servers can adhere to the requirements for serving foreign papers in Morocco.

Understanding the Central Authority

Maintaining an efficient justice system falls upon Morocco’s Ministry of Justice. The Ministry is in charge of the central administration, which includes the general secretariat of the ministry, headed by the general secretary.  the Directorate of Civil Affairs, Criminal Affairs, Pardons, and the Human Resources Directorate come under the Ministry’s purview. The Ministry of Justice covers the Directorate of Legislation and Budget and Control.

The minister’s responsibilities include administrative and logistical management of the cabinet, general inspection and service of follow-up, and analysis of requests.  The minister’s office and the cabinet’s office all have unique functions. The head of the Departments of Civil Affairs and Law and the Judiciary is Mr. Rachid Ouadifi.

The Hague Service Convention aims to create a uniform and effective process for the cross-border service of judicial and extrajudicial documents about civil or business disputes. With due regard for the receiving country’s sovereignty and legal processes, it seeks to guarantee the efficient and effective service of documents. We at Undisputed Legal seek to ensure that your papers are served efficiently and effectively. 

Each Hague Service Convention member state has designated the Ministry of Justice to receive and process requests for service of documents from other Hague Service Convention member states. The Ministry in Morocco receives service requests from member nations and processes them per Moroccan law and procedure. The Hague Service Convention specifies uniform forms for document service requests. The Ministry utilizes these forms to promote consistency and ease of communication among member nations. Documents must also be translated into either the official language of the receiving country or a language that the recipient understands, as stated in the Convention’s language requirements. Our Undisputed Legal process servers are located in Morocco. Our job is to ensure that we serve your papers according to the country’s authorities. 

After the documents have been served, the receiving country’s Central authority will issue a Certificate of Service or an equivalent document. The Hague Service Convention and applicable local laws were followed in the service of these documents, as evidenced by this certificate. As proof of completion of service, our Undisputed Legal servers will ensure that the Certificate of Service is accurate and up-to-date to be used in legal proceedings.

What does the Ministry of Justice Do in Morocco

The Ministry of Justice, Directorate of Civil Affairs Division for the Management of International Cooperation Mechanisms in Civil Matters, is the Moroccan Central Authority.  Morocco has a dual-language system, with French and Arabic as the main languages. Our Undisputed Legal process servers are local to the Kingdom of Morocco and are familiar with the French, Arabic, and Berber languages used in Morocco.

If the recipient resides in a foreign country, the letter of request is transmitted through hierarchical channels to be forwarded through diplomatic channels or by post through registered letters. Our Undisputed Legal process servers can serve papers according to the specific process service specifications of your documents. The Letter of Request is transmitted to the presidency of the public prosecutor, who sends it to the public prosecutor’s office at the high court. In this jurisdiction, it must be notified. It is then returned to the recipient by the judicial police. The document is notified in the language of the state of origin and accompanied by a translation into Arabic or French. No fees for State services or taxes are levied with an international notification from a Contracting State.

With the approval of the local Court of First Instance or commercial court, a foreign judgment can be enforced in Morocco at the defendant’s residence or, if relevant, at the place of enforcement. Nevertheless, for this court to grant permission to enforce the judgment, the judgment must have been issued by a competent court in the relevant jurisdiction. It must have been final under the law of the jurisdiction in which it was rendered. The parties must have been adequately represented and informed, and the decision must not go against Moroccan public policy.

To obtain a warrant from the court of first instance, the applicant or their agent must sign a written request, or the applicant must appear in person and make a declaration, with one of the registry’s sworn agents taking minutes. The entries also include the parties’ names and the summons’ dates. Our Undisputed Legal process servers will do everything we can to guarantee that your summons is complete and accurate. 

Civil Procedure in Morocco

The court’s president appoints a reporting judge or the judge assigned to the case without delay following the recording of the request. If one of the parties is a company, the request or report must include the company’s name, nature, and headquarters. Additionally, it must consist of the plaintiff’s and defendant’s surnames, first names, position or occupation, domicile or residence, and, if applicable, the name, capacity, and domicile of the plaintiff’s representative.

In addition, the subject, facts, and means of the request or minutes must be briefly stated. Parties must ensure that they attach all relevant documents to their application. When requesting this from multiple defendants in a written motion, the plaintiff must file an equal number of copies of the defendants involved. When necessary, the reporting judge or the case’s presiding judge clarifies the statements left out or never included.

Agents who do not have a legal right to represent themselves in court must provide evidence of their authority in the form of an authentic deed, a private deed that has been duly legalized, or the verbal declaration of the contracting party. Nonetheless, a public official designated for this role may lawfully represent the public administration in court.

The plaintiff and defendant are promptly summoned to the hearing by the judge in writing on the day he specifies. It must determine the plaintiff’s and defendant’s full names, occupations, physical addresses or residence places, and the request’s contents. The deciding court and the specifics of the summons should also be specified.  One of the registry agents, registered mail with receipt acknowledged, or administrative means may deliver the summons. If the receiver is located outside the country, it will be passed through diplomatic channels by the rules established by such conventions.

Any person residing with the recipient, including parents, servants, or other household members, is deemed to have validly received the summons according to Article 38. The enclosed envelope must include the party’s full name, residence, the date of notification, the signature of the person delivering the summons, a representative, and the court’s seal. Our Undisputed Legal process servers are responsible for ensuring delivery and will make note if the recipient is unable or unwilling to sign the certificate. The certificate is always signed and sent to the court registry by this agent or authority.

If the summons could not be delivered at the party’s home or residence due to the registry agent or administrative authority not being able to meet the party or someone authorized by them, a note is made on the certificate, and it is returned to the relevant court’s registry.

After ten days after the court’s rejection, the summons is deemed duly served. Additionally, the judge has the discretion to choose whether or not to issue a new summons and whether or not to extend the periods mentioned above. The judge will designate an agent of the registry to serve as curator.  A private process service agency like Undisputed Legal investigates the role with the help of the relevant government and administrative authorities and supplies all necessary paperwork.

A minimum of one day must pass between the date of summons notification and the scheduled appearance date. If the party is domiciled or resident in the place where the court of first instance sits or a neighboring locality, the judgment would be nullified after five days; if the party is in any other place on the Kingdom’s territory, the penalty is fifteen days. There is a time limit for appearances when the person summoned does not have a domicile or residence within the jurisdiction of the courts of the Kingdom (Article 41).

Nevertheless, summonses sent to anyone in Morocco are still subject to the standard deadlines unless the judge decides to extend them. Each party must appear personally or through an authorized representative as specified in the summons.

Notaries in Morocco

With their unwavering commitment to upholding legal standards and invaluable expertise, notaries play a pivotal role in Morocco’s real estate transactions. Notaries in Morocco are appointed by the Ministry of Justice, who are public officials. Their primary responsibility is to verify legal deeds that bestow upon them a specific date, probative power, and executory authority. A notary’s role is to guarantee the legitimacy of real estate transactions.

Before any transaction, the notary provides the parties with information and advice regarding the financial, tax, and legal aspects of purchasing or selling a property. Notary public services ensure that property titles are clear of liens and that the seller is the legal owner. The notary public is responsible for drafting the sale deed and checking that its provisions are legally binding.  The notary’s role in financial management includes vetting monetary transfers, ensuring taxes are paid correctly, and confirming transfer rights. By registering the transaction with the appropriate authorities, the notary performs the official registration of the transaction.

The notary will ensure the transaction abides by all applicable building and urban planning regulations in the jurisdiction. Professional notaries authenticate documents and offer guidance on various topics, such as real estate management and planning.

In the event of a sale, the notary is obligated to check the ownership of the property, confirm that the parties are legally capable, and affirm that all taxes and legal requirements have been met. Notaries handle the money side of transactions, advise clients on legal and tax matters, and mediate real estate disputes when necessary.

A notary public is responsible to their client to offer them fair, knowledgeable, and thorough service. This involves keeping the client’s information private, providing accurate and precise information about the whole transaction, and looking out for their best interests within the bounds of legality. A notary’s duties in succession cases include ensuring the decedent’s wishes are honored, dealing with succession matters legally, and helping to distribute assets fairly. As real estate buyers’ agents, notaries draft pre-sale contracts, conduct property inspections, prepare sale deeds, and record the sale.

In most cases, parties need to contact the notary who presided over the sale to retrieve the deed, as the judicial archives hold these records. Regarding real estate transactions in Morocco, notaries frequently access databases and are actively involved in digitizing notarial processes to make them more transparent and efficient.

 
Power of Attorney in Morocco

One way to grant another person the authority to handle their business, legal, or personal affairs is through a Power of Attorney (POA).

Donors, grantors, or principals grant another party the power to act on their behalf. The agent or attorney-in-fact is the person who has been given the power. In the past, power was defined as an instrument that was sealed and a letter as an instrument held in one’s hand. There is currently no variation in either of these documents because the grantor has signed them.

An attorney-in-fact is a representative that a principal has delegated authority to act on their behalf. An agent or attorney-in-fact has an ethical and legal obligation to act loyally and truthfully toward their principal.  The essential mental capacity must be present for a principal or grantor to create a Power of Attorney. A power of attorney will not be valid if the grantor cannot grant permission because of an injury, illness, or mental capacity. However, in a durable power of attorney, the grantor specifies that the power will remain valid even in the event of the grantor’s incapacity. The grantor may appoint another person to act on their behalf without a power of attorney by petitioning the court to establish a guardianship or conservatorship.

The form of a power of attorney, whether verbal or written, is jurisdictional. A written power of attorney is equivalent to a credible witness. Based on its intended use, a power of attorney must typically be in writing per legal requirements. The only way for institutions like the International Revenue Service, banks, hospitals, and nursing homes to recognize a power of attorney is if it is in writing.

It is legally binding if the grantor signs and dates the power of attorney. However, this will not be lawfully binding enough if a third party challenges the document. Such a challenge cannot affect a document examined and signed or stamped by a notary public. A notary public, two witnesses, and the principal or agent must all sign for a power of attorney to be valid in certain states.

An enduring power of attorney is utilized if the principal becomes incapacitated later on; the power of attorney remains effective. By signing this document, the attorney-in-fact can make decisions regarding the grantor’s health care.  Working with a private process-serving company like Undisputed Legal is ideal for parties who want power of attorney documents to be served in a foreign nation. This is so that the documents can be sent to the appropriate authorities. We will make extraordinary efforts to protect your documents and ease your mind. We make every effort to minimize any interruptions in your service. Our process servers across Morocco are the way forward for smooth process service. 

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OFFICE LOCATIONS

New York: (212) 203-8001 – 590 Madison Avenue, 21st Floor, New York, New York 10022
Brooklyn: (347) 983-5436 – 300 Cadman Plaza West, 12th Floor, Brooklyn, New York 11201
Queens: (646) 357-3005 – 118-35 Queens Blvd, Suite 400, Forest Hills, New York 11375
Long Island: (516) 208-4577 – 626 RXR Plaza, 6th Floor, Uniondale, New York 11556
Westchester: (914) 414-0877 – 50 Main Street, 10th Floor, White Plains, New York 10606
Connecticut: (203) 489-2940 – 500 West Putnam Avenue, Suite 400, Greenwich, Connecticut 06830
New Jersey: (201) 630-0114 – 101 Hudson Street, 21 Floor, Jersey City, New Jersey 07302
Washington DC: (202) 655-4450 – 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Suite 300, Washington DC 20004

FOR ASSISTANCE SERVING LEGAL PAPERS IN MOROCCO

Pick up the phone and call Toll Free (800) 774-6922, or click the service you want to purchase. Our dedicated team of professionals is ready to assist you. We can handle all your Morocco process service needs; no job is too small or too large!

Contact us for more information about our process-serving agency. We are ready to provide service of process to all our clients globally from our offices in New York, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Westchester, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C.

“Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives”– Foster, William A

Sources

1. Address: Ministry of Justice

Directorate of Civil Affairs

Division for the Management of International Cooperation Mechanisms in Civil Matters

Place Mamounia

BP1015 Flap

Morocco

Telephone: +212 (0) 537213675

Fax: +212 (0) 537705914

2.  (Art. 3(1)): Article 37 of the Code of Civil Procedure provides that:

The summons is transmitted either by one of the registry agents, or by one of the bailiffs, or by post by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt, or by administrative means.”

3. Clause 32: (final paragraph, mo, D. n° 1-93-206 of September 10, 1993 – 22 Rebia I 1414—art. 2)

4. The party is subsequently served with the summons by registered mail, which includes an acknowledgment of receipt by the registry.

5. If the party remains in a European state, the timeline for Algeria or Tunisia is two months. This increases to three months if they reside in an Asian or American country or another African state, and for Oceania, it will be four months.

6. According to Article 42, except Sundays and public holidays, the court’s judges of first instance can sit every day.

7.  Public hearings are required by law unless an exception is made in Article 43 

(D. n° 1-93-206 of September 10, 1993 – 22 Arabia I 1414-art 2)

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