Details On Serving The Defendant In A Personal Injury Case

In the legal system, the term “serving” refers to the act of giving notice, regarding some planned legal action. The Injury Lawyer in Cambridge of the plaintiff in a personal injury lawsuit must serve the defendant with specific papers.

The defendant needs to receive specific legal documents.

Those documents should be handed to the defendant. The plaintiff has the right to pay a process server, in order to take care of that task. The process server then needs to obtain the required proof or service.

If the defendant has a registered agent, then that same agent should also receive copies of the served legal documents. Registered agents are authorized to receive served documents. A sued corporation would need to hire a registered agent.

What happens if the defendant cannot be found?

The plaintiff must provide the court with a summary of his or her efforts, which were made in an attempt to locate the defendant. If the court agrees, the plaintiff might find it possible to pursue an alternative option.

Some legal jurisdictions allow service by publication. That entails putting a notice in a newspaper or a similar publication. The plaintiff would need to check with a lawyer, in order to see whether or not that option would be legal within the jurisdiction of the plaintiff’s residence, or of the defendant’s residence.

The other option concerns serving a substitute. That substitute must be an adult that has agreed to be served on behalf of the defendant. It could be a relative that is living at an address that is known to the plaintiff.

Understand that under this second option, the plaintiff’s task entails more than simply handing the specific documents to the substitute. The court would also want a copy of those same legal papers mailed to the defendant’s last known address.

The details given online about using a substitute, do not explain how any plaintiffs could obtain proof of having mailed a copy of the legal papers to the defendant’s last known address. The plaintiff could mail them by certified mail, and then obtain proof of having taken that action.

Of course, that would not guarantee a serving of the defendant. He or she might have moved from that last known address. Hence, the plaintiff’s hope for the defendant’s appearance at the discovery session would depend on the actions taken by the substitute.

Why does the court want proof that the defendant has been served?

If a defendant willfully chooses to ignore the request to come to a discovery session, the court has the right to order the appropriate punishment. That punishment normally takes the form of a fine. Still, the court might feel that some other form of punishment would prove effective.