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FamilyAttorney, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1422
Experience:  Owner, attorney in private practice, appellate attorney, GAL & former trial lawyer, licensed for 37 years
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I live in California. I recently got a temporary restraining

Customer Question

I live in California. I recently got a temporary restraining order for myself and my child against his father. I was not able to serve him in time for the hearing because he was recently fired and evading service by not answering his door and not seeing his son. we were able to get a continuance because of that but I am concerned that we won't be able to serve him. He was recently fired and was also evicted according to him. can I ask for some sort of substitute service if we cannot get him served. what does the law say about evading service?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

Hello. I’m a licensed attorney with 36 years’ experience. I specialize in family law and appeals.

Please note:This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an attorney on this site.

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California, like other jurisdictions, has substituted service. I would strongly suggest at this point that you get an experienced process server. A process server will track him down and find him.

You should contact an California Process Server if you have specific questions about Process Serving in California.

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

If the father can't be personally served, an experienced server will be able to effect substitute service. Also, a knowledgeable server will keep an accurate record of his service attempts should it be necessary for you to get a court order to publish service in a newspaper, which is a form of substituted service that the court uses as a last resort.

If he's specifically evading service, which he is, the court will entertain a motion to effect substituted service. The court deals with these issues all the time. Eventually service will be accomplished, and it's not going to help him in the eyes of the court that he was avoiding service. That's already a strike against him when he gets into court -- or if he defaults, which is also possible.

Someone knows where he is -- his boss, his brother -- they know where he is. An experienced process server will get him and get him served.

I can look for process servers in your area if you'd like. I know the sheriff is supposed to do a great job but so far he hasn't so I'd suggest using an experienced process server. They are licensed or registered and bonded, and their job is to get service done.

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Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 1 year ago.

By the way, and unfortunately, this happens a lot with service of restraining orders. Usually these are the most difficult things to serve and the father here knows it's coming. The law will require him to be served by substituted service if he cannot be served in any other way, and you shouldn't have much difficulty getting the restraining order if he's avoiding service. The court will not look upon that favorably.

Thanks in advance for rating me. Let me know if you need anything else answered.

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