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How To Serve a Subpoena

  • August 04, 2011
  • by ServeNow Staff

SubpoenaWhen handling legal matters or investigations, individuals needed to testify or provide physical evidence can be difficult to locate or uncooperative. A process server can ensure that a subpoena is served in a timely and legal fashion.

What is a subpoena?

A subpoena is a legal document that orders an individual to testify for an investigation or legal proceeding at a specific date and time. A subpoena can be a summons for a person to provide testimony at a trial, testify during the early stages of an investigation, or provide physical evidence relevant to the case.

Why do you need to have a subpoena served?

As part of the legal process, the person must be notified that they are required to testify. As a party to the case, you and your family members are prohibited from serving the papers, so you can turn to a process server to deliver the subpoena.

Who serves Subpoenas?

The rules of service vary from state to state, although in many states anyone over the age of 18 who is not associated with the case may serve the subpoena. It is a good idea to hire a professional process server, however, to ensure service is done quickly, accurately, and in accordance with state and federal laws. This person can serve the subpoena by hand delivery, e-mail (with receipt of acknowledgement requested), mail to the recipient’s address with return receipt requested, or by reading it aloud to the receiving party.

How a process server will help you serve a subpoena

Hiring a professional process server to serve your subpoena has several advantages, including:

  • They can locate hard-to-find individuals. In matters regarding the legal process, individuals can often prove to be evasive and difficult to locate. Process servers have experience locating and serving hard-to-find individuals through methods like skip tracing, a process that utilizes public records, databases, research, and other investigative tactics to locate and serve an individual.
  • They know how to serve uncooperative individuals. Process servers are trained in defusing heated and confrontational situations, so relying on a professional ensures that difficult individuals will be successfully served.  
  • They will abide by the laws. With strict laws that vary from state to state regarding how, when, and where an individual can be served a subpoena, a professional can ensure that the service of process is done legally. Process servers know that abiding by local and state laws will help prevent problems, delays, and even dismissals later in the legal process.
  • They will provide legal proof of service. After the subpoena has been served to the individual, the process server will also file proof of service known as an Affidavit of Service, providing legally acceptable documentation that the person was served. 

Due to the nature of investigative, and often time-sensitive cases, turning to a process server is the fastest, easiest, and sometimes safest way to get your subpoena served.

How to find a trusted local process server is a trusted network of local, pre-screened process servers. To find a professional process server, please visit or call (877) 737-8366.

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