Don't Try to Navigate the Legal System Alone

Should You Dodge Process in Litigation?

Why shouldn't you dodge process server? After all, if they can't find you, they can't serve you. If they can't serve you, you can postpone the suit. Right? Wrong. The rules of civil procedure require service of citation upon a defendant in order to give the defendant notice of the suit and an opportunity to defend it.

The rules allow service in person or by certified mail. If you dodge a process server and make yourself scarce, you're making yourself vulnerable. If you don't accept the certified mail service, you're making yourself vulnerable. The people who wrote the rules know human behavior. There are provisions in the rules for alternative service. If the first attempts at personal service either in person or by certified mail are unsuccessful, upon application to the court, there are other means of service available for use. These rules apply to family law cases and civil litigation.

Rather than discuss those here, let me explaining why you shouldn't dodge a process server.

If alternative service is used, you may never actually know what the lawsuit is about. If alternative service is used, you may set yourself up for a default judgment which, after a time, could be impossible to set aside. In such a case, you'd have to live with the consequences for a long time. It's better to accept service so you know what is happening and have an opportunity to find a good lawyer to defend you.