IN RE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE COMMITTEE ON CIVIL PRACTICE; ARK. RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE 4 & 12; ARKANSAS SUPREME COURT ADMIN. ORDER NO. 18
Arkansas Supreme Court Committee on Civil Practice submitted
its proposals and recommendations for changes in rules of
procedure affecting civil practice. They were published for
comment. In re Recommendation of the Committee on Civil
Practice. 2016 Ark.29 (per curiam). The proposals relate
to summons and related rules: Ark. R. Civ. P. 4 and Form of
Summons, Ark. R. Civ. P. 12, and Administrative Order No. 18.
have been reviewed by the committee and the court. The court
thanks everyone who took the time to review the rules and
submit comments. Revisions were made, most notably: (1) in
the deletion of service on a receptionist or employee
apparently in charge [proposed (f)(1)(D)] and service on a
secretary or assistant in (f)(12-16); (2) in not increasing
the time period to post or the number of postings for warning
orders (g)(3); (3) in not requiring clerks to post a list of
approved commercial delivery companies (g)(2)(A); and (4) in
revising the substantial compliance provision in paragraph
adopt the amendments and republish the rules as set out
below. These amendments shall be effective January 1, 2019.
1. Ark. R. Civ. P. 4. Summons and Service of
Issuance of Summons. Immediately on the filing of
the complaint, the clerk shall issue a summons to the
plaintiff or the plaintiffs attorney, who shall deliver it
for service to a person authorized by subdivision (c) of this
rule to serve process.
Form of Summons. The summons shall be styled in the
name of the court and issued under its seal, dated and signed
by the clerk or a deputy clerk, and directed from the State
of Arkansas to the defendant to be served. It shall contain:
(1) in its caption, the names of the plaintiff and defendant
or, if there are multiple parties, the names of the plaintiff
and defendant listed first in the complaint;
(2) the address of the defendant to be served, if known;
(3) the name and address of the plaintiffs attorney, if any,
otherwise the address of the plaintiff;
(4) the time within which these rules require that the
defendant to be served must appear, file a responsive
pleading or motion, and defend; and
(5) notice that the defendant's failure to appear,
respond, and defend within the time allowed may result in
entry of judgment by default against the defendant for the
relief demanded in the complaint.
Process: Defined; By Whom Served.
purposes of this rule, the term "process" means the
summons and a copy of the complaint, which shall be served
together. The plaintiff or the plaintiffs attorney shall
furnish the person making service with as many copies as are
following persons are authorized to serve process:
(A) the sheriff of the county where the service is to be
made, or his or her deputy, unless the sheriff is a party to
(B) any person appointed pursuant to Administrative Order No.
20 for the purpose of serving summons by either the court in
which the action is filed or a court in the county in which
service is to be made;
(C) any person authorized to serve process under the law of
the place outside this state where service is made; and
(D) in the event of service by mail or commercial delivery
company pursuant to subdivision (g)(1) and (2) of this rule,
the plaintiff or an attorney of record for the plaintiff.
Proof of Service. The person effecting service shall
make proof of service to the clerk within the time during
which the person served must respond to the summons. Failure
to make proof of service, however, shall not affect the
validity of service.
Proof of service may be made by executing a certificate of
service contained in the same document as the summons. If
service is made by a person other than a sheriff or his or
her deputy, the certificate shall be sworn. If service has
been by mail or commercial delivery company, the person
making service shall attach a return receipt, envelope,
affidavit, acknowledgment, or other writing required by
subdivision (g)(1) and (2) of this rule.
service is made by warning order, proof of service shall be
made as provided in subdivision (g)(3) of this rule.
Proof of service in a foreign country, if effected pursuant
to the provisions of a treaty or convention as provided in
subdivision (h)(4) of this rule, shall be made in accordance
with the applicable treaty or convention.
At any time in its discretion and on terms as it deems just,
the court may allow any summons or proof of service to be
amended unless it clearly appears that material prejudice
would result to the substantial rights of the party against
whom the summons is issued. (f)Personal Service Inside
the State. Service of process shall be made inside the
state as follows:
Natural Persons. If the defendant is a natural
person at least 18 years of age or emancipated by court
(A)delivering a copy of the process to the defendant
personally, or if he or she refuses to receive it after the
process server makes his or her purpose clear, by leaving the
papers in close proximity to the defendant;
(B)leaving the process with any member of the defendant's
family at least 18 years of age at a place where the
defendant resides; or
(C)delivering the process to an agent authorized by
appointment or by law to receive service of summons on the
Minors. If a defendant is less than 18 years of age
and has not been emancipated by court order, by delivering
the process to the defendant's father, mother, or
guardian or, if there be none in the state, to any person at
least 18 years of age in whose care or control the minor may
be or with whom the minor resides.
Incapacitated Persons. If a plenary, limited, or
temporary guardian has been appointed for an incapacitated
person, or if a conservator has been appointed for a person
who by reason of advanced age or physical disability is
unable to manage his or her property, service shall be on the
person and the guardian or conservator.
Incarcerated Persons. Service on a person
incarcerated in any jail, penitentiary, or other correctional
facility in this state shall be on the administrator of the
institution, who shall promptly deliver the process to the
incarcerated person. A copy of the process shall also be sent
to the incarcerated person by first-class mail and marked as
"legal mail" and, unless the court otherwise
directs, to his or her spouse, if any.
Corporations. Service on any corporation, including
nonprofit corporations, professional corporations, and
cooperatives, shall be on its registered agent for service of
process, or the agent's secretary or assistant; any
officer of the corporation, or the officer's secretary or
assistant; a managing or general agent of the corporation, or
the agent's secretary or assistant; any agent authorized
by appointment or by law to receive service of process; or as
provided by an applicable statute.
Limited Liability Companies. Service on a limited
liability company shall be on its registered agent for
service of process, or the agent's secretary or
assistant; a manager of a limited liability company in which
management is vested in managers rather than members, or the
manager's secretary or assistant; a member of a limited
liability company in which management is vested in the
members or in which management is vested in managers and
there are no managers, or that member's secretary or
assistant; a managing or general agent of the limited
liability company, or the agent's secretary or assistant;
any agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive
service of process; or as provided by an applicable statute.
Partnerships. Service on any type of partnership,
including a general partnership, a limited liability
partnership, a limited partnership, and a limited liability
limited partnership, shall be on any general partner or his
or her secretary or assistant; the partnership's
registered agent for service of process, or the agent's
secretary or assistant; a managing or general agent of the
partnership, or the agent's secretary or assistant; any
agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive service
of process; or as provided by an applicable statute.
Unincorporated Associations. Service on an
unincorporated association subject to suit under its own
name, except a partnership, shall be on its registered agent
for service of process, or the agent's secretary or
assistant; any manager of the association, or the
manager's secretary or assistant; any agent authorized by
appointment or by law to receive service of process; or as
provided by an applicable statute.
Defendant Class Actions. Service on a defendant
class shall be on each of the parties named as class
representatives in the same manner as if each representative
were sued in a separate action.
Trusts. Service on a trust shall be on a trustee of
the trust, on the trustee's secretary or assistant, or as
provided by statute.
The United States. Service on the United States or
any of its agencies, officers, or employees shall be as
authorized by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or by
other federal law.
States and State Agencies. Service on a state or any
of its agencies, departments, boards, or commissions subject
to suit shall be on the chief executive officer, director, or
chairman, any other person designated by appointment or by an
applicable statute to receive service of process, or on the
Attorney General of the state if service is accompanied by an
affidavit of a party or the party's attorney that the
officer or designated person is unknown or cannot be located.
Municipal Corporations. Service on a municipal
corporation shall be on the mayor, city manager, city
administrator, or city clerk.
Counties. Service on a county shall be on the county
judge, county administrator, county clerk, or circuit clerk
if no county clerk has been elected.
Districts. Service on a school district shall be on the
president of the board of directors, ...