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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Facebook Service of Process Approved in S. Africa

SOUTH AFRICAN JUDGE ORDERS SERVICE OF PROCESS

VIA FACEBOOK

 


As if the Newspaper publishers did not already have enough challenges to their business model, Service via Publication in the back of a newspaper is loosing its appeal.  It would seem that it is being replaced by Service via Facebook, email and other electronic methods.   Those that follow the Process Serving industry know that service via publication in a newspaper is typically ordered by a court when all other methods of service have failed or have otherwise been exhausted.  Facebook seems to be the new preferred method of service when all other forms of service have failed. 

This from the Independent Online News in South Africa (IOLnews)

Judge explains Facebook summons

August 7 2012 at 09:51am
By Mervyn Naidoo


“Changes in communication technology have increased exponentially; therefore it is not unreasonable to expect the law to recognise such changes and accommodate it,” said Steyn in a written explanation.
“The present application, in my view, would not have been possible had it not been for a recent amendment to the uniform rules of a court which provides for service by way of electronic mail, registered post and fax,” said the judge...




This story is one of many similar stories I have addressed in recent years on this blog.  Do cases like this one and the others suggest that traditional process servers are going to cease to exist?  Personally I do not think so, but I do think it is important that process servers the world over acknowledge that times are changing and that we need to change with them and hopefully evolve so that we can become the electronic equivalent of a physical process server if that means that is the only way we will remain relevant and the due process rights of the practice are protected.

Jeff H. Karotkin