Service by Substitution not timely ?

Asked almost 2 years ago - Davis, CA

32 days before court my ex had a processor serve "me" by substitution. Production of Documents request (she wants bank records).

Papers were left with my current wife and my known place of residence-- however, I read in rules of civil procedure 415.20 that 10 days need to be tacked on for service by substitution. Also, that an additional mailing of the documents and a "due diligence" needs to take place. Nothing has been mailed to me and we are 1 week from court.

1) With an additional 10 days is the service "untimely"?
2) Without the mailing is the service even valid?

Thank you.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. James Carl Eschen III

    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Section 415.20 applies only to service of the summons and service of other documents before you respond . Because you are being served with a request for production, you probably were already served with a summons.

    If you have already responded to the summons, delivering the request to your home and leaving them with your new wife is valid substitute service. No mailing is necessary. Had your ex mailed the documents instead of personally delivered them, you would have had five extra days in which to respond.

  2. Alan James Brinkmeier

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . If the plaintiff is attempting to serve you by substituted service (meaning the complaint was left with someone other than you), but there has been no follow up mailing, then you have not been served. However, there is a legal answer to every question and a practical one. The practical answer is that you have not received anything in the mail, but you don't know that the plaintiff won't contend that you were

Related Topics


Divorce is the process of formally ending a marriage. Divorces may be jointly agreed upon, resolved by negotiation, or decided in court.

Serving divorce papers

Service of process in divorce is the official term for notifying the defendant spouse that a divorce petition was filed with the court.

Avvo Staff

I Want a Divorce, But I Can't Find My Spouse

If you've been separated from your spouse for an extended period of time, you might decide to take the next step and file for divorce. But what happens if you've lost track of your spouse... more

Can't find what you're looking for? Ask a Lawyer

Get free answers from experienced attorneys.


Ask now

29,346 answers this week

3,329 attorneys answering

Ask a Lawyer

Get answers from top-rated lawyers.

  • It's FREE
  • It's easy
  • It's anonymous

29,346 answers this week

3,329 attorneys answering