It's getting hard to avoid service of Court documents

As a trial lawyer, one of the challenges that I can face very early in the law suit is serving the defendant with notice of our claim against them.

My experience in the past 18 years, is that people who are hiding assets or avoiding payment are often reluctant to accept service of documents … imagine that!

When I started practicing law our options were a bit more limited than today: we could serve people at their place of work (with the Court’s approval) or at a close relative if we could assure the Court the document would come to the debtor’s attention.

Just this week I obtained an Order validating service of a debtor at his place of work when all of the other address information for him, did not produce confirmation that he was at those addresses. The Judge, correctly, believed that the document would come to the debtor’s attention … as the debtor called me on the phone this morning, I have evidence that supports that belief.

Case law is now taking things a step further – some cases are allowing people to be served on Facebook, Twitter & other social media accounts.

This may seem “progressive” but it is the same test that I relied on this week to serve the debtor at work – will the document come to the debtor’s attention?

The times are changing, yes. However, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Inga B. Andriessen, JD
Sr. Trial Lawyer