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How to serve documents on an Australian company

Updated: 7 December 2019

Do you need to know how to serve a legal document on an Australian company?

Below are the rules from the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) and the Service and Execution of Process Act 1992 (Cth) to guide you.

When the Corporations Act won't apply

Now, to avoid any confusion, even if the Corporations Act covers a service rule, it won't apply if the  Service and Execution of Process Act applies.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the service rules below.

Also, for simplicity, I have included the service rules in the table below.

Service rules

Service Rule

Corporations Act 2001 (section 109X)

Service and Execution of Process Act 1992 (Section 9)

Registered Office

Leave the document at or post it to a company's registered office.

Director

Deliver the document personally to a director of the company who resides in Australia or in an external Territory

Liquidator

If a liquidator of a company has been appointed, leave the document at, or post it to the liquidator's office using their most recent address lodged under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).

Administrator

If an administrator of the company has been appointed - leave the document at, or post it to the address of the administrator in the most recent notice of that address lodged with ASIC.


Director & Secretary

Leave the document at, or post it to the alternative address notified to ASIC. However, this only applies to service on the director or company secretary:

  • in their capacity as a director or company secretary; or
  • for the purposes of a proceeding for their conduct as director or company secretary.


Registered body

Leave the document at, or send by post to the body's registered office.


Registered foreign company

Leave the document at or send by post to:  

(a) the address of a local agent of the foreign company notice of which has been lodged under the Corporations Act 2001; or                    

 

(b) if a notice or notices of a change or alteration in that address has or have been so lodged--the address shown in that last-mentioned notice or the later or latest of those last-mentioned notices.


Key points

You can serve a document on an Australian company following the rules set out in section 109X of the Corporations Act and section 9 of the Service and Execution of Process Act. 

Finally, if a service rule is covered in section 9 of the Service and Execution of Process Act, then section 109X of the Corporations Act won't apply. 





Vivian Michael
 

Vivian Michael is a lawyer and founder of Michael Law Group. Vivian's mission is to deliver the best quality business legal services to entrepreneurs launching an Australian business, wherever they are in the globe.

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