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How many days after filing a response in a lawsuit do I have to serve the Plaintiff? The summons says 30 days, but I was never

Los Angeles, CA |
Filed under: Lawsuits and disputes

officially served. And can I fax the response to the Plaintiff or does it need to be served on them? Does it matter that I wasnt served the complaint? This case is from a car accident I was involved in but I wasn't even driving. I was the passenger.

Attorney Answers 4


  1. You should have served your response by mail to the attorney of record or "pro per" when you filed your repsonse with the court. The 30 days was the time you had to file your response after service on you. If you have an insurance company for anything, especially auto, tender your defense immediately.

    The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


  2. you are suppoosed to serve your response by mail and then file it in the court house with a proof of service under penalty of perjury indicating that the response has been served. Consider hiring an attorney to assist you.


  3. If you are talking about filing a cross-complaint against the defendant, that is filed at the same time you file your Answer to the Complaint. Your questions is a little confusing. If you were not served with the Complaint (properly) you can fight that as well. As my colleague has stated, you should send this to the insurance carrier for the car you were a passenger in and they should provide you with an attorney to represent you. Good luck.

    I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. The above answer is for general information only and is based on the information you posted. Every case is fact dependent, so to get a thorough analysis of your situation, you will need to consult face to face with an attorney licensed to practice in the jurisdiction where the incident took place. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.


  4. And if you do wish to challenge service, the motion must be your first appearance in the action (what is filed before the expiration of 30 days), or challenges on that ground are waived. As a practical matter, however, it's likely only a temporary solution, and could be a waste of time and expense, as the defendant will simply then serve you properly.

    The information/answer is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. Consult an attorney regarding your individual situation. This attorney is only licensed to practice law in California. Your question and this answer do not create an attorney-client relationship. Do not send/post any confidential information.

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