Service of Process

The Due Process clauses in the United States Constitution prohibit courts from exercising personal jurisdiction over a defendant unless the defendant has proper notice of the court’s proceedings. To meet this rule, courts require plaintiffs to arrange for defendants to be served with a court summons and a copy of the plaintiffs’ complaint. These papers are collectively called process.

Typically, it is not enough to simply mail process to the defendant. The summons and complaint must be either given directly to defendants or left with a suitable person at their home or place of business. Service may usually be performed by any adult who is not a party to the lawsuit. Plaintiffs may hire professional process servers to serve defendants.

There are exceptions to these general rules. For example, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow defendants to waive in-hand service of process. Defendants who do so get more time to compose their answer. Those who refuse must compensate the plaintiff for the costs of arranging for in-hand service. See Rule 4(d) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

Rules governing service of process vary by jurisdiction. See State Civil Procedure Rules.

For more information or to see this exact text by its original owner follow the link below.

Civil Procedure

(a.) A person commits the offense of obstruction of justice if that person:
(2.) Knowingly uses intimidating or physical force, threatens or corruptly persuades another person, or by threatening letter or communication, endeavors to influence, intimidate, or impede a witness or officer in any official proceeding, with intent to:
(c.) Evade a legal process that summons the person to appear as a witness or to produce a document in an official proceeding

PA§ 5101. Obstructing administration of law or other governmental function. A person commits a misdemeanor of the second degree if he intentionally obstructs, impairs or perverts the administration of law or other governmental function by force, violence, physical interference or obstacle, breach of official duty, or any other unlawful act, except that this section does not apply to flight by a person charged with crime, refusal to submit to arrest, failure to perform a legal duty other than an official duty, or any other means of avoiding compliance with law without affirmative interference with governmental functions.

18 U.S. Code Chapter 73 – OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE
18 U.S. Code § 1509 – Obstruction of court orders
Whoever, by threats or force, willfully prevents, obstructs, impedes, or interferes with, or willfully attempts to prevent, obstruct, impede, or interfere with, the due exercise of rights or the performance of duties under any order, judgment, or decree of a court of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. No injunctive or other civil relief against the conduct made criminal by this section shall be denied on the ground that such conduct is a crime.

Some state Laws Prohibiting Service of Process on Sundays/Holidays

All state court papers should be served in accordance with the law of the state having original jurisdiction (where the complaint is filed).

Several states do not permit documents to be served on Sundays or Holidays, but some of these states will permit service under special circumstances pursuant to Court Order.

If you live in a state where Sunday service is not permitted, it is your obligation to include this information in your instruction sheet when forwarding work to out-of-state members. See the Rules of Procedure section at the beginning of each state§s listing for a more detailed explanation of the statutes cited here.

Florida No Sundays
Maine No Sundays
Massachusetts No Sundays
Minnesota No Sundays
New York No Sundays/ GL when it snows 😉
Rhode Island No Sundays
South Dakota No Sundays
Tennessee Sundays Except by Court Order
Texas No Sundays
Virginia No Sundays
West Virginia No Sundays

To check on process serving laws for another particular state please click here.