How to Provide Proof of Process Service
Even after the court process has been handed off to a defendant or witness, the process server’s job still is not complete. The last step of the serving process is completing the proof of service and filing it with the appropriate court. In Texas, this is known as a Return of Service, and it must contain very specific information to be valid. While the return of service should be filed in the original case file at the court, the case is not affected if it is not.
Texas Return of Service Required Contents
In Texas, a valid and complete Return of Service should include:
- Case number
- Case Name
- Court where the case is filed
- Description of what was served
- Date and time the process was received for service
- Name of the person or entity served
- Address where service was made
- Date of all service attempts, whether successful or not
- Mode of delivery of all service attempts
- Name of the person who served or attempted to serve the process
- If the person who served the process is a process server certified by the Texas Supreme Court, their identification number and the expiration date of their certification
- Any other information required by rule or law
- If the process was served by registered or certified mail (only when authorized), the Return of Service must also contain the return receipt with the addressee’s signature
- Signature of the person who served the process, with a penalty of perjury disclaimer if required
Where to File the Return of Service
Once all the required data elements for a valid Return of Service have been collected, the Return of Service should be filed with the court named in #3 above. A copy of the Return of Service should also be provided to the plaintiff who filed the case and maintained by the person who served the process for a minimum of 7 years.
What if Process Was Never Served?
If the process cannot be served in the amount of time designated for that case type by the filing court, then the Return of Service should be submitted to that court with a statement explaining the measures that were taken to effectuate service. Information about the defendant or witness’ potential whereabouts should also be included.
Dallas’ Top Process Servers
For process servers that know exactly how to collect valid Return of Service information, trust the team at Accurate Serve. We’ll make sure every T is crossed, and I is dotted when serving process for your civil case, criminal case, eviction summons, family law case, and more. Once service is made, we’ll file the right forms with the appropriate court and update you via our case status tracker, available 24/7 right on our website. Just call us at (469) 518-9581 or send us a work request online to get started today!