What Is a Summons and What Does It Mean?

A summons is a legal document that courts or administrative government agencies issue to order someone’s appearance before a court judge. A person may need to appear in court when someone files a civil case against them, requiring them to defend themselves in a court hearing.

However, a person would need a process server to deliver a summons to its rightful defendant. These professionals ensure that the summons is accurate, legal, and compliant with state rules and regulations. Otherwise, the court may junk the order on account of being unofficial.

EGA Process Serving is a Maryland process server offering such legal services. With over a decade of offering excellent process serving and legal courier activities, we have established ourselves as a reliable process server in Baltimore, Maryland, Northern Virginia, and Washington, D.C.

Here is a closer look into the importance of a summons and how we can help with process serving.

What Does a Summons Mean?

When a person receives a summons, it means that another person has filed a case against them. The person who received a summons becomes the defendant in this case.

The defendant must look into the summons carefully. The document will include details about where, when, and what time they must appear in court. Failure to appear in court as specified in the summons may cause the defendant to lose the case by default.

A losing defendant may go to prison depending on the case filed against them. A person may file a summons for a criminal case. Failure to attend court in the right location, time, and date may warrant an arrest. The court may arrest an absent defendant on grounds of contempt of court.

When Can a Defendant Be Absent in Court?

As much as possible, a defendant must attend court as detailed in the summons served to them. However, some people may fail to appear in court on a specified date and time due to scheduling conflicts. Others may not have immediate access to the court location, making it difficult to attend their court date.

When a person considers being absent in their court date, they must get in touch with a lawyer to review their case. An attorney can offer legal advice and present a defendant with their options regarding their case.

What Is a Process Server?

A process server is a professional courier who specializes in delivering legal documents, including summons. These specialists have undergone training in locating defendants and ensuring the accuracy of the documents they handle.

In Maryland, a person who wishes to file a case against another must go through a process server to deliver a summons. The process server may serve the defendant through a certified mail service. This process involves a postal worker bringing the defendant a summons, which the defendant must sign. The postal service will then send a green return receipt to the court as proof of service.

Alternatively, the process server may send the summons to the defendant’s local sheriff. The sheriff will send the summons to the defendant and then send the court an affidavit of their service.

Conclusion: What Is a Summons?

A summons is a legal document requiring a defendant to appear before the court. Failure to appear before the court may cost the defendant the case and lose by default. A person receives a summons from a process server.

EGA Process Serving is an expert Maryland process server, offering all legal delivery services you would expect from a professional courier. Get in touch with our professionals proudly serving Baltimore, Maryland, Northern Virginia, and Washington, D.C. for your process serving needs.