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OnpointLegal, Lawyer (JD)
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 545
Experience:  20+ years of legal experience
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is there a law that requires me to pick up my postal mail from

Resolved Question:

is there a law that requires me to pick up my postal mail from my mail box in a timely fashion? I just found out im being charged withcriminal contempt for not showing up to a court date b/c they delivered the papers by postal mail and i do not regulary check my mail
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  OnpointLegal replied 8 years ago.
You are not legally required to pick up mail. On the other hand, the U.S. mail is one way to effect service in court cases. So, if someone mails you service in a court case and you don't get it because you don't check your mail, you are still served.

I am certain the court and/or prosecuting attorney will drop the contempt charges if you explain you did not check your mail (assuming you are believable -- and I only add that because the court will assume that most people do check their mail regularly, maybe not everyday, but regularly -- so be ready to explain why you don't check it regularly.) And, be ready to explain why, as soon as you checked it and found out that there was a summons, you did not proactively do something rather than waiting for criminal contempt charges to be filed. But, the bottomline will be the court is much more concerned that you are now available to address the underlying issue -- the criminal contempt charges were just a tool to get you to pay attention. It will be important that you do act in a timely manner on all future issues before the court on this matter. If you don't, second chances are unlikely to come easily.

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