HOW TO SERVE LEGAL PAPERS IN POLAND

A president serves as the country’s chief executive officer under Poland’s unitary parliamentary republic and representative democracy. The Council of Ministers and the prime minister, who serves as the head of government, further wield executive authority. The prime minister appoints the council’s members, who are then nominated by the president and confirmed by parliament. A five-year term for the head of state is chosen by the people.  Andrzej Duda is the president, while Mateusz Morawiecki is the prime minister. 

An upper and lower house (Sejm and Przemysl) comprise Poland’s bicameral legislative legislature (Senate).  There are a total of a hundred seats in the Senate, which is elected using a first-past-the-post election system. It is possible for a majority of the Sejm to overturn a Senate decision to change or reject a Sejm-passed legislation. 

BACKGROUND

The National Assembly of the Republic of Poland is made up of representatives from both the Sejm and the Senate. It is only necessary to convene a National Assembly led by the Sejm Marshal when a new president enters office, a charge against them is presented before the State Tribunal, or they are adjudged permanently unable to perform their responsibilities owing to ill health. 

The sixteen voivodeships that make up Poland are referred to as provinces or states.  The status of gmina and powiat is often shared by major cities. It is common for provinces to be established on the boundaries of historical areas, or to be based on the names of certain towns.  The elected regional assembly (sejmik) and a voivodeship marshal, an executive chosen by the assembly, share administrative responsibility at the voivodeship level. 

Transparency in adjudication, protection of parties’ procedural rights and their ability to defend them, the validity of proceedings, accurate timing calculations, and, ultimately, the validity of judgments are contingent on documents being properly served in accordance with constitutional principles. The regulations governing the delivery of Poland Process Service papers are binding on all parties, and they cannot be changed. Code of Civil Procedure (‘the Code’) Articles 131 to 147. In Poland, all Poland Process Service papers are served on an ex officio basis; this is the case for the vast majority of cases. Courts provide papers to parties involved in legal disputes. The postal operator, bailiffs, and the court serving agency are the entities in charge of providing these Poland Process Services. In most cases, mail is delivered by the postal service. When deciding how to deliver court papers, Poland Process Service considerations such as price and efficiency are taken into account

It is permissible for attorneys and legal advisers to serve one another papers directly with a dated acknowledgment of receipt under the Poland Process Service provisions of Article 132 of the Code. Documentation proving service of a pleading or evidence of mailing it through registered mail must accompany all pleadings filed with the court system. Pleadings that do not include evidence of service or proof of posting by registered mail are returned. Direct service at a court secretariat is also an option for those who have shown proof of identity and confirmed receipt of the documents served on them.

DOMESTIC PROCESS SERVICE IN POLAND

The Rules of Procedure allows the president of a court to order the direct Poland Process Service of judicial papers on local institutions and attorneys, as well as the direct acceptance of d Poland Process Service ocuments provided by local institutions to the court. In cases when a Poland Process Service document was filed so late that a summons to a court hearing was not served with a copy of it, the document may be served during the hearing.

There are times when the requesting authority can determine the address by utilising the necessary registries.  Foreign judicial authorities and  parties to judicial proceedings have access to registries or services in this Member State that may be used to determine where a person’s present residence is located.  

Poland Process Service costs PLN 31. A copy of the payment receipt is required for all Poland Process Service requests. The power of attorney should be included to the request if an attorney has been appointed.

As per Regulation (EC) No. 1206/2001 of the 28 May 2001 on the cooperation between the courts of Member States with regard to evidence gathering in civil or commercial actions, an application’s admissibility is examined by courts.  Judicial Poland Process Service papers are often transmitted through registered mail with an acknowledgment of receipt in the mail.

It is permitted in accordance with Code Article 135 to send Poland Process Service to a PO box address specified by one party. There are a number of questions about whether electronic Poland Process Service of papers (e.g., through e-mail, the Internet, fax, or SMS) is permissible in civil actions. If a defendant files pleadings electronically, documents are served on them.

As soon as an acknowledgment of receipt for an electronic Poland Process Service is received, such service is considered complete. Poland Process Service is presumed to have occurred fourteen days after the document was submitted into the ICT system if no acknowledgment is provided.

A notification that a message has been placed into an ICT system is left in the recipient’s inbox, rather than e-mail addresses. A guardian ad litem appointed by a court judgement on an application by the individual involved may also be served with documents. When a pleading is served on a party whose place of residence is unknown, it is necessary to protect that party’s rights. Organizations without representative bodies or whose members’ residences are unknown may designate a guardian in this situation.

Displaying the document in the courthouse serves as Poland Process Service if a party’s place of residence is unknown and there is no need for the document to be served to protect that party’s rights. Parties and their representatives must notify the court if their address has changed, otherwise the document is considered served even if the court is aware of the new Poland Process Service address.

This notification must be included in the notice of the document’s location, which must mention that Poland Process Service must be collected within seven days after the notice’s date. Server will try to serve Poland Process Service document a second time if recipient does not pick it up by deadline. Once again, the server leaves a notification stating the document has been deposited at a post office or town hall and the recipient has additional seven days to retrieve the document. The final day of a certain time is considered to be the date on which a document was served under case law.

Legal papers that are served to an adult member of the home or, if no such person is available, to the residents’ association, the caretaker, or the village head are regarded to have been served when they are delivered to those individuals.

how to serve legal papers by mail in poland

A letter or notification is delivered to the addressee’s front door or mailbox. The Regulation lays forth a sample notification for compliance purposes. Additionally, if the recipient does not pick up a judicial document that was delivered by registered mail, the document will be returned to the court that sent it. It is presumed that the paper was delivered to the intended recipient on the final day they had to pick it up. When papers are served, Poland Process Service procedural deadlines may begin to run out.

Operators’ post offices or servers must create a notice of deposit, which specifies where the deposit may be retrieved within seven days, beginning on the day after it was placed, in accordance with Poland Process Service regulations. Addressees’ letterboxes are left with notices.

After leaving a message stating that the recipient may pick up the document at the operator’s post office or the local town hall, the server then states that the paper was not served on an acknowledgment of receipt form, signs the letter on the address side that reads “notice provided.”

The document is promptly dropped off at the operator’s post office or the town hall within the operator’s jurisdiction. As soon as the document is placed, the post office or town hall stamps and signs it, indicating that it was received. To ensure that the submitted Poland Process Service document can be found, it is held for seven days in the operator’s post office or town hall.

process service in poland under the hague service convention

Poland Process Service is a practise used to convey notice of a first legal action to another party (such as a defendant), court, or administrative body so that that person may react to the proceeding before the court, body, or other tribunals. By delivering a collection of court papers (referred to as “process”) to the person to be served, process service is carried out by a service agent.

On November 15, 1965, members of the Hague Conference on Private International Law approved a multilateral convention called the Hague Service Convention, which governs the service of civil and commercial documents in Poland. So that plaintiffs could serve overseas defendants with court papers that could be trusted, this system was created. Civil and commercial process service is covered under the treaty, but criminal process service is not. 

In terms of document delivery, the Polish Central Authority is not engaged directly. Courts with jurisdiction receive documents. Depending on the jurisdiction, these courts may utilise postal service, a bailiff, or the court’s service personnel to provide formal service. Direct delivery of a document to the intended recipient in the court registry may likewise serve as a formal method of service.

Only by giving a document directly to the addressee at the court register may a document be delivered informally as defined by Article 5(2). For example, a notary public or a police officer might provide the service requested by the applicant. Article 5(1) of the Convention requires that the text be translated into Polish. No translation of the Poland Process Service document is required if the court or other authority from another country asks a Polish court for the service of documents on a person in Poland, according to Article 1132(2) of the Polish Code of Civil Procedure.

Polish court papers may be translated into English under the agreement signed on July 5th, 1987, between Poland and China. The Polish Central Authority is not directly involved in the service of documents. Poland Process Service documents are sent to competent courts. These courts may use for formal Poland Process Service the post, a bailiff or the court’s service officials. The formal service may also be conducted by directly handing a document to the addressee in the court registry. Informal delivery within the meaning of Article 5(2) may be conducted only by directly handing a document to the addressee in the court registry. Poland Process Service by a particular method requested by the applicant may be conducted, for example, by police officers or by notary.

With the Hague Service Convention, Poland Process Service in other contracting nations has been made more easier. For each contracting state, there is a central body responsible for accepting service requests. The central authority of the state where Poland Process Service is to be made may be contacted immediately by a judicial official authorised to serve Poland Process Service in the state of origin. Requests for Poland Process Service in the receiving state are handled by the receiving state’s centralised authority, generally via a local court. The central authority delivers a certificate of service to the judicial officer who requested it after Poland Process Service has been completed and verified.

for assistance serving legal papers in poland

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Sources

1. Voivodeships are split into 380 counties (powiats) and 2,477 municipalities as of 2022 (gminas).

2. “The Rules of Procedure for Ordinary Courts” and “the Regulation” are two separate regulations issued by the Minister for Justice on 23 February 2007 and 12 October 2010 respectively, which govern how court papers are served to parties in civil actions.

Under the Postal Act of 23 November 2012, as well as the implementing acts published thereunder, the service of extrajudicial papers is subject to the regulations issued by the Minister for Administration and Digitization on 29 April 2013 (‘the Postal Regulation’).

3. . Section 68 of the Rules of Procedure allows documents to be served by the court serving agency, court clerks, judicial police, or bailiffs if this manner of service is more efficient. Bailiffs provide papers to those who need them during enforcement actions. The Minister of Justice may establish a court-serving agency and design its organisational structure as well as a thorough protocol for delivering papers to the courts.

4. According to Article 135 of the Code, the recipient of a court document may be informed of its arrival via a PO box if that PO box has been designated as the communication address.

5. The fee is deposited into this account:.

Administrative Department of the Interior

The Fifth of Batorego

Warsaw, Poland, area code: 00951

NBP O/O Warszawa Nr 67 1010 0031 3122 3100 0000 is the account number.

6. MSWiA’s Department of Spraw Obywatelskich

At 17/21 Ul. Pawiskiego Street

City 02-106 Warsaw

There is an online register maintained by the National Court Register in Poland that lists the addresses of all types of businesses, including registered partnerships, professional partnerships and limited liability partnerships, as well as joint-stock companies and cooperatives, state-owned enterprises, R&D bodies, foreign enterprises and their branches, and mutual societies. In line with the openness principle, all entries in the register are recorded (anyone may access the data stored therein).

7.Article 133 of the Code mandates that papers be served in person, that is, presented directly to the addressee or, in the case of an incompetent person, to their legal representative. Legal persons and organisations without legal personality are served on the body entitled to represent them in court or given to staff approved to receive papers by the head of the unit involved, if the document is meant for a legal person. A legal representative or someone authorised to receive court papers must be served with documents in the event of a lawsuit.

8. Derogatory channels (bilateral or multilateral agreements or internal law permitting other transmission channels)

Bilateral conventions on judicial co-operation: Belarus, Bulgaria, China (People’s Republic of), Czech Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Russian Federation, Turkey and Ukraine.

Council Regulation (EC) No 1393/2007 on the service in the Member States of judicial and extrajudicial documents in civil or commercial matters (Strasbourg, 13 November 2007) (European Judicial Atlas – Service of Documents).

9. The document, which is to be served under Article 5(1) of the Convention, should be generally translated into Polish. According to Article 1132(2) of the Polish Code Civil Procedure, if a court or other authority of a foreign state applies to a Polish court for the service of document on a person staying in Poland, without attaching a translation of the document into Polish, the document is served on the addressee if he chooses to accept it.

The only exception is provided by Agreement of 5 July 1987 between Poland and China, which allows enclosing a translation of judicial documents into English. However in practice, documents from China which are delivered to a Polish authority with translation into English should be translated into Polish by the Central Authority or by the competent regional court.

10. Address: Ministry of Justice (Ministerstwo Sprawiedliwości)

Departament Współpracy Międzynarodowej i Praw Człowieka

Al. Ujazdowskie 11

00-950 Warsaw

P.O. Box 33

Poland

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