The Legal Service of Process Rules in Arkansas

Website Provided by

Serving someone in Arkansas occurs due to the legal documents that need to show defendants, witnesses and others how and when they are to go to the court through the process of legal matters. When someone is serving another individual these papers in the state, it is usually due to a complaint through civil or criminal matters.

When a complaint filed against another happens, the agency, company or person needs notification of the information. This is due process and requires the necessary action through a summons to court along with details about the process. A process server locates the individual or company and hand delivers the documentation which may be a summons, complaint of subpoena for the courts. Arkansas process servers are those that deliver these papers, which are a variety of different items for the courts in the states. These employees must comply with Arkansas rules that are legally necessary. These individuals abide by the guidelines of the Arkansas legal court processes.

Other Serving Processes

Many legal processes in Arkansas for serving papers occurs through hand delivery. However, there are some other methods available depending on the process server. If hand delivery of the documentation is not possible, these papers are put in the hands of someone at least fourteen years old at the residence of the defendant. They may also transfer to an agent or individual permitted by the service of process in Arkansas. This is a substituted service. However, if the person does not show up in court, a default judgment will occur against him or her. It is very important for a defendant to appear in court after a summons reaches him or her.

Cannot Process Summons

If for any reason, the clerks in Arkansas are unable to issue the summons, a warning order is necessary. This should state the name and the caption of the specific case as well as other details. The plaintiff of the claim is the responsible party for publishing this warning order. He or she must do so for a full consecutive two weeks through general newspaper circulation in the particular county where the action filed occurs. Another action necessary in these instances is to mail a copy of these legal documents to the defendant through a restricted delivery.

The Process Server in Arkansas

The usual person to deliver summons to the defendant or other witnesses is the sheriff or those in the sheriff’s office. Other designated people are able to do so as well, but anyone over eighteen could become a process server. However, in Arkansas, only those made process servers by the court can deliver summons to the defendant and applicable witnesses. The person must also be at least eighteen and a citizen of the United States. The appointment comes from the state courts, and the individual must retain appointment from the courts. If he or she no longer works in this capacity, he or she cannot serve papers in the state.

Process serving through a server or other appointed person delivers legal papers to the specific intended receiver. This could be someone other than the defendant such as a witness or another individual that may face questioning. Cross-motion papers filed in this manner also require serving to the person or group as well, and other papers that have details need this same service. The process server that delivers these by hand usually needs to make several attempts before the intended person receives the necessary paperwork. This may entail locating the individual at home, work or other frequented places.

Costs and the Lawyer

In Arkansas, the costs of serving court papers may range from $50 to $200 for each file that needs receiving by the witness or defendant. If there is a rush or an overnight service necessary for these matters, these costs may increase. Locating the individual outside of the usual such as searching him or her out as well as any other additional services added on may cost in addition to the other added expenses. Some professional services may keep these fees down when there is a need for multiple attempts or additional issues. The expenses may remain flat fees no matter how long it takes.

It is often important to hire a lawyer when papers need filing and when service for summons becomes necessary. The lawyer may find someone specific, hire a service or indicate who the plaintiff needs to contact. The lawyer may also receive similar paperwork from the defendant.


Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

Find a Lawyer

Find a Local Lawyer