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Friday, September 11, 2009

Is this the Future of Service of Process?

Australian Judge Approves sending default notices via Facebook

In December last year the social networking site Facebook was used to notify a couple that they lost their home after defaulting on a loan. The court approved this method of delivery only after there had been numerous failed attempts to effect service at the couple's home and by email.

Australian courts have in the past given permission to serve process by standard e-mail and text messages when it was not possible to effect service on the subjects in person.

Facebook released a statement following the court ruling. "We're pleased to see the Australian court validate Facebook as a reliable, secure and private medium for communication. The ruling is also an interesting indication of the increasing role that Facebook is playing in people's lives".


Last year, it was an Australian court that allowed documents to be served on two defendants via the very popular social network site Facebook. Now, a New Zealand court has also has agreed; New Zealand High Court Associate Justice David Glendall approved the delivery of court papers via a Facebook notification to the account of a man being sued. One can only hope this Facebook trend will soon die of natural causes.

For more information about the New Zealand case, please visit , NZ court papers can be served via Facebook, judge rules, March 16, 2009, written by Ian Llewellyn

Process Service by E-Mail - New York

A Snyder v. Alternate Energy Inc., a New York City Civil Court decision from last year allows e-mail service in certain circumstances.

For a very thorough review of this case please visit the following blog post:

Aside from the obvious implications of this court decision, what I find particularly fascinating is the comments to the author’s blog. The comments mostly from lawyers both applaud the decision and question just how effective traditional email can be for giving actual notice. Great comments! Check out the blog to gain some insight into what attorney’s think about this trend.

eService Pursuant to Rule 4 (f) of the FRCP

Earlier this year, a Virginia judge was asked to approve e-mail service of process.

Lawyers for indicted former Rep. William J. Jefferson, D-La., have asked Alexandria U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III to allow service of process by e-mail on a hard to find international witness. The actual Court Motion can be found at: