I need to serve a document

Serving your court documents on other parties is an important part of your case. It makes sure that all parties to a case have all the documents that they need to prepare their case. Different types of documents may require you to serve the other party in a certain way.

It is important that the parties have copies of important documents. The Court should be confident certain steps have been taken to make sure that all parties have all documents. This is why the Court requires many documents to be personally served.

For more information about the different ways documents can be served see Order 6 of the County Court Civil Procedure Rules 2018.

If you are not required to personally serve a document, to serve the other party you may email or post a document to the address provided by the other party. If the party has legal representation, you will need to serve their solicitor.

Serving on a person

To personally serve documents on an individual, the person being served needs to confirm their identity to you and the document must be physically handed to them. If they do not accept the copy, you should tell them the nature of the document and place it somewhere in their presence. Make a note of the date, time and place you served, or attempted to serve, the document.

Using this information, complete an affidavit of service (person) form and file it with the Court to prove service. This form shows:

  • how you served the document
  • how you explained the document
  • how the person you served identified themselves.

Serving a document on a company

To personally serve a document on a company you can post or deliver the documents to the company’s registered address. Make a note of the date, time and place you served, or attempted to serve, the document. Using this information, complete an affidavit of service (company) form and file it with the Court to prove service.

Process servers

Like all steps in the court process, help is available should you need it. In this case, contacting a process server can make personally serving a document easier. Process servers are professional servicers who serve essential legal and case related documents.

If you are required to serve an original sealed copy of an order and do not have one, you can ask the Court for an authenticated order. See frequently asked questions.

The information on this page relates to proceedings in the Commercial or Common Law Divisions. If your matter is in the Criminal Division, visit our Criminal Division page.

For an explanation of common legal terms and phrases, please see our glossary.

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Page last updated: 28 November 2018