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Proper Service Question


lolah
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I would not go by that. Use the link from the arkansas court. You would go by the forum state (ie the one you are sued) to determine if service is proper even if you are out of state.

So for instance, in my state a plaintiff may serve an out of state defendant by sending them first class mail. That's it. Your state may be much more strict with requirements, but service was proper according to the court in my state.

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Okay, this is what the Arkansas Rules of Civil Procedure says for service outside the state:

(e) Other Service. Whenever the law of this state authorizes service outside this state, the service, when reasonably calculated to give actual notice, may be made:

(1) By personal delivery in the same manner prescribed for service within this state;

(2) In any manner prescribed by the law of the place in which service is made in that place in an action in any of its courts of general jurisdiction;

(3) By mail as provided in subdivision (d)(8) of this rule;

(4) As directed by a foreign authority in response to a letter rogatory or pursuant to the provisions of any treaty or convention pertaining to the service of a document in a foreign country;

(5) As directed by the court.

Service inside the state (for my purposes) is:

(1) Upon an individual, other than an infant by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint to him personally, or if he refuses to receive it, by offering a copy thereof to him, or by leaving a copy thereof at his dwelling house or usual place of abode with some person residing therein who is at least 14 years of age, or by delivering a copy thereof to an agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive service of summons

Does this mean they should have sent the summons to Ohio? I am thinking yes. They knew where I was employed at the time, so I am guessing they knew where I lived, too.

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It depends, you said your brother got the summons... what did he do with it?

I have no idea. Probably threw it away, he was 17. I asked him last week and he says he doesn't even remember signing for it. He was adamant he never did and was going to go to the courthouse and check. I told him I called the court and they said he did.

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I contacted a NACA lawyer to help with this, and even he didn't know. So, am I supposed to just let this sit? I guess maybe since I paid it - that is what I deserve...but since I found out about it when they were threatening garnishment, that is all I felt I could do. I was backed into a corner.

Can anyone else help?

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Guest usctrojanalum

Yea, I'm stumped too just because there is no easy answer - because jurisdiction (personal and subject matter) depend on a myriad of different factors. It's never as easy as I live here, they served me there, is service bad.

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It's never as easy as I live here, they served me there, is service bad.

The reason I keep thinking this could be bad service is they knew my place of employment at the time of service and it is likely (arguable) that they knew my current residence.

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Check Civ Pro Rules you posted above and see if what they did fits within the rule. Also, I posted the "(d)(8)" rule that is referred to in (e)(3). It is a bit long...

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(8)(A)(i) Service of a summons and complaint upon a defendant of any class referred to in paragraphs (1) through (5), and (7) of this subdivision (d) may be made by the plaintiff or an attorney of record for the plaintiff by any form of mail addressed to the person to be served with a return receipt requested and delivery restricted to the addressee or the agent of the addressee. The addressee must be a natural person specified by name, and the agent of the addressee must be authorized in accordance with U.S. Postal Service regulations. However, service on the registered agent of a corporation or other organization may be made by certified mail with a return receipt requested.

(ii) Service pursuant to this paragraph (A) shall not be the basis for the entry of a default or judgment by default unless the record contains a return receipt signed by the addressee or the agent of the addressee or a returned envelope, postal document or affidavit by a postal employee reciting or showing refusal of the process by the addressee. If delivery of mailed process is refused, the plaintiff or attorney making such service, promptly upon receipt of notice of such refusal, shall mail to the defendant by first class mail a copy of the summons and complaint and a notice that despite such refusal the case will proceed and that judgment by default may be rendered against him unless he appears to defend the suit. Any such default or judgment by default may be set aside pursuant to Rule 55© if the addressee demonstrates to the court that the return receipt was signed or delivery was refused by someone other than the addressee or the agent of the addressee.

(B) Alternatively, service of a summons and complaint upon a defendant of any class referred to in paragraphs (1)-(5) and (7) of this subdivision of this rule may be made by the plaintiff by mailing a copy of the summons and the complaint by first-class mail, postage prepaid, to the person to be served, together with two copies of a notice and acknowledgement conforming substantially to a form adopted by the Supreme Court and a return envelope, postage prepaid, addressed to the sender. If no acknowledgement of service is received by the sender within twenty days after the date of mailing, service of such summons and complaint shall be made pursuant to subdivision ©(1)-(3) of this rule in the manner prescribed by subdivisions (d)(1)-(5) and (d)(7). Unless good cause is shown for not doing so the court shall order the payment of the costs of personal service by the person served if such person does not complete and return within twenty days after mailing, the notice and acknowledgement of receipt of summons. The notice and acknowledgement of receipt of summons and complaint shall be executed under oath or affirmation.

© Service of a summons and complaint upon a defendant of any class referred to in paragraphs (1) through (5) and (7) of this subdivision may also be made by the plaintiff or an attorney of record for the plaintiff using a commercial delivery company that (i) maintains permanent records of actual delivery, and (ii) has been approved by the circuit court in which the action is filed or in the county where service is to be made. The summons and complaint must be delivered to the defendant or an agent authorized to receive service of process on behalf of the defendant. The signature of the defendant or agent must be obtained. Service pursuant to this paragraph shall not be the basis for a judgment by default unless the record reflects actual delivery on and the signature of the defendant or agent, or an affidavit by an employee of an approved commercial delivery company reciting or showing refusal of the process by the defendant or agent. If delivery of process is refused, the plaintiff or attorney making such service, promptly upon receipt of notice of such refusal, shall mail to the defendant by first class mail a copy of the summons and complaint and a notice that despite such refusal the case will proceed and that judgment by default may be rendered against the defendant unless he or she appears to defend the suit. A judgment by default may be set aside pursuant to Rule 55© if the court finds that someone other than the defendant or agent signed the receipt or refused the delivery or that the commercial delivery company had not been approved as required by this subdivision.

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I am not sure if what they did fits the rule - that is where I am confused. :confused:

The mininum required in Ohio is service by any form of mail with return receipt requested and delivery restricted to the adressee.

In Arkansas, they can leave it with someone in the same family at least 14 years old, or leave a copy of the summons at the house (dwelling place).

So, they followed proper procedure for Arkansas, but not Ohio. And, I am not sure which they should have followed.

I think Ohio because that was the place of my current, permanent residence at the time AND they knew of my place of employement at the time the judgment was awarded. I am certainly no legal expert, but I think it's arguable.

Thanks for the post, though.

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Guest usctrojanalum

As a general rule, where ever your drivers license or state identification card says you are a resident of that is where the summons should be served. That is just a broad statement that does not cover exceptions or other variations that may change what proper service is.

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As a general rule, where ever your drivers license or state identification card says you are a resident of that is where the summons should be served. That is just a broad statement that does not cover exceptions or other variations that may change what proper service is.

I had an Arkansas DL at the time, but was in the military as well. Arkansas was my Home of Record, but Ohio was my state of legal residence.

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Guest usctrojanalum

If you had a Arkansas DL at the time, - you would have a hard time getting the service thrown out if service was made in Arkansas.

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If you had a Arkansas DL at the time, - you would have a hard time getting the service thrown out if service was made in Arkansas.

Military members are not required to change their DL when they move or vehicle registration. They can keep their HOR DL.

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