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Does the lack of a proof of service (certificate of service) on a document I filed with court & opposing counsel invalidate doc

Dewitt, MI |
Filed under: Lawsuits and disputes

I forgot to add a proof of service page at the end of a document I submitted to a court and sent to opposing counsel, (I have the return receipt though saying it was delivered). Will the court say that the document therefore is not admissible as evidence?

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

Just file a separate document called "proof of service" and you should be fine. For future reference, you can use ordinary mail for service of things other than a complaint. Things you are sending the other attorney do not generally need to be sent certified.

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Posted

Be very careful here. More often than not, pro se litigants self-inflict damage by simply not knowing what they do not know. In your case you are confusing the filing rules with the rulues of evidence, potentially very much to your detriment. The rules of evidence govern admissibility. As a general rule, filing a document with the court does not make it admissible.

Nothing short of the focused advice of an experienced litigator in your area will meet your needs.

Best wishes for a favorable outcome, and please remember to designate a best answer.

This answer is offered as a public service for general information only and may not be relied upon as legal advice.

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5 comments

Asker

Posted

Thank you! The question should have been worded, "Will the court say that the document was never served to opposing counsel?" If I show the return receipt card in court with the signature of the opposing counsel's secretary on it as being delivered - is that good enough to prove I served the document to them?

Paula Brown Sinclair

Paula Brown Sinclair

Posted

This is a matter of the rules of your court, where I am not licensed to practice.

Asker

Posted

Thank you - I believe I found the court rule which says MCR 2.107(D) "The proof of service may be included at the end of the paper as filed. Proof of service must be filed promptly and at least at or before a hearing to which the paper relates." I believe that means I can bring the return receipt requested (the green card ) from the postal service to court to prove they were served. Yes?

Paula Brown Sinclair

Paula Brown Sinclair

Posted

You have asked for advice. I am able to offer only public information.

Asker

Posted

I added the last comment to complete the thread with the court rule for another public person who has the same issue. No advice asked for - answer received to original question from Mr. Goodman.

Posted

You can re-file the document with a proof of service. Also, just because you have filed a document with the court does not make it admissible in court. Whether a document is admissible depends on the rules of evidence and whether the rules apply to the particular type of court proceeding you are involved in.

Tara Moody-Nichol is licensed only in the State of Michigan. All answers provided relate only to Michigan law and are made for general information purposes ONLY. They are NOT intended to be legal advice and are NOT intended to create an attorney-client relationship between Ms. Moody-Nichol and any readers or subscribers to avvo.com. Tara Moody-Nichol Attorney at Moody & Nichol, PLLC East Lansing, MI (517) 583-0520

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