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Saturday, July 21, 2012

Service of Process via eMail and ePublication

Last month in a Federal Court case pending in the UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION, Judge Robert M. Dow granted a Motion for the Service of Process via email and electronic publication. 

Those following this Blog know that this is hardly the first time that a similar Motion and Order has been granted in Unites States courts.  As a matter of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(f)(3), specifically allows courts to grant alternative manners of service on foreign defendants when all other manners of service have been exhausted or have be unsuccessful.

The following is actual language from the Motion arguing for these alternative manners of service.   

Service of Process by E-mail and Electronic Publication is Warranted in this Case Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(f)(3), Coach requests an order allowing service of process on Defendants via electronic mail (“e-mail”) to the registrant of each of the Defendant Domain Names at the e-mail address provided by the registrant to the registrar and by electronically publishing notice of this action at the Defendant Domain Names.

Electronic service is appropriate and necessary in this case because the Defendants, on information and belief, (1) have provided false physical address information in their registrations for the Defendant Domain Names in order to conceal their locations and avoid liability for their unlawful conduct, and (2) rely primarily on electronic communications to communicate with their registrars and customers, demonstrating the reliability of this method of communication by which the registrants of the Defendant Domain Names may be apprised on the pendency of this action. Coach respectfully submits that an order allowing service of process solely via email and electronic publication in this case will benefit all parties and the Court by ensuring the registrants of the Defendant Domain Names receive immediate notice of the pendency of this action and allowing this action to move forward expeditiously. Absent the ability to serve the Defendants in this manner, Coach will almost certainly be left without the ability to pursue a remedy.

Click the document to link to the actual Motion filed by the plaintiff law firm representing COACH, INC. and COACH SERVICES, INC.,

By Jeff Karotkin