What happens if you cannot serve the other party court papers within 5 days before court?

Asked 11 months ago - Tacoma, WA

I feel like it's been impossible to serve the other party these court papers and we have court on Friday the 15th. I've been trying for 2 weeks and I only know one place where he's at and it's his job but I don't know his work schedule I just been attempting going there day & night and I even had other people try as well but it seems like he leaves early or he's off . I don't know what to do .

Attorney answers (4)

  1. Benjamin T G Nivison

    Contributor Level 12

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If you have not served the other party with papers for the hearing on the 15th, you will need to tell the judge that fact. The hearing will probably get moved to a later date, and you will have to complete service. Those are just the rules of playing fair -- also known as Due Process.

    If you are already in a civil lawsuit (and original service of process has been completed), you usually don't have to serve subsequent papers in person. Check out Washington's Civil Rules (link below) for details on acceptable service (see CR 5 especially). You can also spend a few dollars to hire a process server or messenger service, who takes care of that for you. If this is original service of process, you can't do it yourself anyhow, and a process server is probably the best way to go (look at CR 4). All of this is made much easier with a lawyer, of course, so consider hiring one if you can.

    Good luck.

    Benjamin Nivison is an attorney licensed to practice law in Washington State. This communication does not create... more
  2. Pamela Hazelton Rohr

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Are you using a professional process server in the first place? They are often worth their professional fees.

    If you are unable to timely file documents, you should ask for a continuance. The court will not hear your motion and make an award against another party without that party being served.

  3. Alan James Brinkmeier

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . You should do what everyone else does.........

    Before Friday, draft, file and present a motion to appoint a special process server. Hire a special process server

    Then, if the judge grants the motion, go about using a professional process server

  4. Samuel Cohen

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . File a petition for alternate service. Check the rules of the Court where the case is located. Retaining counsel would help.

    The information provided is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. I am... more

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