Electronic Service of Process - Pros and Cons
Direct Legal Support, Inc. has published several articles on our blog discussing the implementation of courts using cloud based technology for the filing of legal documents. In addition, some jurisdictions have permitted electronic service of process through social media channels such as Facebook. Though the legal industry has been slow to implement digital technology to streamline legal formalities such as service of process, there is a strong probability that electronic service of process will become a common practice within the near future. Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of electronic service of process.
Electronic Services of Process Pros
There are several benefits of allowing legal documents to be served online. For example, depending on the nature of a case, it may be near impossible to track down a party to serve, or financially burdensome to locate the defendant for indigent peoples. Most people and businesses have some type online profile. From business websites, to social profiles, it is relatively easy to find someone online and serve them with legal documents in no time.
Electronic service of process also creates a sufficient paper trail that can ensure legal documents were delivered to the appropriate person. For example, Microsoft Outlook email features allow email senders to request for delivery and read receipts. This can help confirm that legal documents were delivered to the defendant’s email address, and whether or not he/she has read them.
Electronic Services of Process Cons
Common electronic service of process cons stem around due process claims. Due process requires defendants to receive fair and proper notice of the charges asserted against him/her. Defendants will be able to challenge electronic service of process by claiming that they were never served. For example, say an email containing legal documents for service was not properly delivered. This would be a valid claim for ineffective service of process. There needs to be additional safeguards in place to ensure electronic service of process does not violate due process requirements of the 14th Amendment.
Electronic service of process could potentially be used as a last resort. With the increase of courts requiring legal documents to be filed online, it is only natural to consider the pros and cons of allowing electronic service of process. Courts could use a pilot program in small claims cases to see the effectiveness of electronic service of process.
Contact Direct Legal Support, Inc. Service for Service of Process
Contact Direct Legal Support, Inc. for your service of process needs. Our registered process servers are here to serve your legal documents on opposing parties. We are confident that you will be satisfied with our service.