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What Rules Do Process Servers Have to Follow?

Michigan is one of many states that doesn’t have a certification or licensing program requirement for process servers. Instead, anyone over the age of 18 who is competent and is not named in the court proceedings may serve process in Michigan. However, just because the rules about who can be a process server aren’t very strict doesn’t mean that process servers here can just do whatever they want. There are still rules that Michigan process servers must follow. In this post, we’ll review the most common rules that apply to process servers in Michigan.

Process Servers Must Be Ethical

All process servers are expected to behave ethically, regardless of their location or local laws. Ethical behavior includes not lying, not wearing disguises, not using fake social media accounts, or any other behavior that would be seen as questionable. While process servers do have to be creative sometimes to get the job done, being dishonest is never acceptable. In fact, it can get an entire case dismissed based on improper service

Process Servers Should Provide Proof of Service

A repeatable process server will always provide valid proof of service when serving process in any case. Along with providing a copy of the proof of service to the client, the process server should also file a copy of the proof of service with the appropriate court. This way, the judge and anyone else dealing with the court case will have easy access to the proof of service. Proof of service can be a signed statement from the process recipients showing the date, time, and location of the service. In the case that the process recipient does not wish to sign the proof of service form, the process server can complete an affidavit affirming the date, time, and location of the service. While it is always preferable for a process server to file the proof of service with the appropriate court, not filing the proof of service with the court does not make the service invalid. 

Michigan-Specific Rules

Most states have certain rules that process servers must follow that are specific to that state only, and Michigan is no exception. There are three special rules in the state of Michigan for process servers:

  • No one may be served while voting in a government election (unless approved by a judge first)
  • No one may be served while attending a religious service, traveling to or from that service, or while within 500 feet from the religious service location (unless approved by a judge first)
  • A legislator may not be served on a day when their house of government is scheduled to meet unless that service is by certified mail
  • A person may not be served while appearing in court for other matters
  • A person who has been extradited back to Michigan for criminal charges may not be served process for a civil case related to the criminal charges until they have had time to either be convicted of the criminal charges or be acquitted and return to their home state
  • Since Michigan shares borders with several of the Great Lakes, service on these waters is permitted and legal in certain situations, such as while in waters that adjoin to the county where service is to be made

Quality Process Servers in Michigan

For qualified, knowledgeable, and ethical process servers in Michigan, look no further than Accurate Serve® of Detroit. To get started, call us at (313) 385-3703 or send us your work requests online. If you need service outside of Michigan, visit theaccurateservefranchise.com to find the office closest to you.