If the person who served a summons at my home claims that they delivered it to me personally but they didn’t, what happens?

There was a summons delivered to my doorstep. The person that dropped it off is claiming that they gave it to me. I was not in the state at the time.

Asked on March 29, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Colorado

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You need to double check this with an attorney in your area as rules regarding the service of the summons and complaint in Colorado. Every state has their own procedural laws.  Generally speaking though, if a process server does not serve the summons and complaint or summons with notice and you can prove it then service is not deemed good and the matter will be dismissed.  But it is not as simple as I have made it sound. What you need to do is to file an answer the complaint in court and in it raise the affirmative defense of lack of personal jurisdiction in that the summons and complaint was improperly served.  Sometimes courts will order a hearing on the matter (in New York it is called a "traverse" hearing) on service and you will have to bring your proof that you were not in the state of the time.  If the statute of limitations has not run be aware that you can still be served properly.  Good luck.


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