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Electronic Service of Process Continues to Grow

The evolution of technology-based communication has created a certain level of tension in the legal profession, as litigators have been faced with the challenge of maintaining constitutionality while simultaneously adjusting to new communication norms. In particular, the courts have been dealing with the question of allowing or denying service of process using email and social media. Though electronic service of process has not yet become the norm, it is certainly expanding as judges continue to find that some defendants are much easier to reach using forms of digital communication.

Service Through Facebook Messenger

Facebook has grown at lightning speed over the last decade, and what began as a platform for college students has evolved into a meeting place for teenagers, young adults, parents, grandparents, and businesses alike. Facebook has its own application called Facebook Messenger that allows private conversations between friends.

In a New York divorce trial in 2015, the judge approved the wife’s request to serve divorce papers to her estranged husband through Facebook Messenger. Her request was granted only after all other methods of communication had been exhausted: the husband’s last known address had been vacated four years ago, he couldn’t be served at work because he was unemployed, and the wife’s private detectives had been unable to track the husband. In this specific situation, traditional service was simply impracticable, so electronic service was allowed.

Service of Process Through Twitter

If anybody was unaware of Twitter in 2016, President Donald Trump has most likely now made them aware of the social media platform that limits posts to 140 characters. A federal magistrate judge in San Francisco recently approved process of service using Twitter, a considerable landmark in the evolution of electronic service of process. The defendant in question is an overseas Kuwaiti national accused of helping to fund ISIS, and the nonprofit group St. Francis Assisi gained approval to serve him through Twitter since the method is not barred by any international agreements.

As service of process techniques continue to develop, it is important for legal professionals to utilize professional process servers who can keep up with so many changes. Accurate Serve of Orlando provides the entire Orlando area with superior services at low costs, so call (407) 760-0880 to learn more.