For the first time in New Zealand, a High Court Judge has approved the serving of papers via Facebook, a popular social networking website.

The approval came after a company had difficulty in serving papers on a person alleged to be overseas.  The company attempted to serve the papers as normal but were unsuccessful.  Because the company had corresponded via email with the person and knew that he had a Facebook site, substituted service via Facebook and email were requested.

The Judge approved the service only after the company assured the court that all avenues of service had been explored and newspaper adverts could not be effectively targeted.