Rule 4. Summons
Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of Civil Procedure for the Superior Courts of Arizona
16 A.R.S. Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 4
Rule 4. Summons
(2) Issuance. On or after filing a pleading, the filing party may present a summons to the clerk for signature and seal. If the summons is properly completed, the clerk must sign, seal, and issue it to the filing party for service. A summons--or a copy of the summons if addressed to multiple parties--must be issued for each party to be served.
(2) Replacement Summons. If a summons is returned without being served, or if it has been lost, a party may ask the clerk to issue a replacement summons in the same form as the original. A replacement summons must be issued and served within the time prescribed by Rule 4(i) for service of the original summons.
(c) Fictitiously Named Parties; Return. If a pleading identifies a party by a fictitious name under Rule 10(d), the summons may issue and be directed to a person with the fictitious name. The return of service of process on a person identified by a fictitious name must state the true name of the person who was served.
(1) Generally. Service of process must be made by a sheriff, a sheriff's deputy, a constable, a constable's deputy, a private process server certified under the Arizona Code of Judicial Administration § 7-204 and Rule 4(e), or any other person specially appointed by the court. Service of process may also be made by a party or that party's attorney if expressly authorized by these rules.
(B) Procedure for Appointment. A party may request a special appointment to serve process by filing a motion with the presiding superior court judge in the county where the action is pending. The motion must be accompanied by a proposed order. If the proposed order is signed, no minute entry will issue. Special appointments should be granted freely, are valid only for the cause specified in the motion, and do not constitute an appointment as a certified private process server.
(e) Statewide Certification of Private Process Servers. A person seeking certification as a private process server must file with the clerk an application under Arizona Code of Judicial Administration § 7-204. Upon approval of the court or presiding judge of the county in which the application is filed, the clerk will register the person as a certified private process server, which will remain in effect unless and until the certification is withdrawn by the court. The clerk must maintain a register for this purpose. A certified private process server will be entitled to serve in that capacity for any state court within Arizona.
(1) Waiving Service. A party subject to service under Rule 4.1 or 4.2 may waive issuance or service. The waiver of service must be in writing, signed by that party or that party's authorized agent or attorney, and be filed in the action. A party who waives service receives additional time to serve a responsive pleading, as provided in Rule 12(a)(1)(A)(ii).
(2) Accepting Service. A party subject to service under Rule 4.1 or 4.2 may accept service. The acceptance of service must be in writing, signed by that party or that party's authorized agent or attorney, and be filed in the action. A party who accepts service does not receive the additional time to serve a responsive pleading under Rule 12(a)(1)(A)(ii).
(3) Service by Others. If served by a person other than a sheriff or deputy sheriff, the return must be promptly filed with the court and be accompanied by an affidavit establishing proof of service. If the server is a registered private process server, the affidavit must clearly identify the county in which the server is registered.
(i) Time Limit for Service. If a defendant is not served with process within 90 days after the complaint is filed, the court--on motion, or on its own after notice to the plaintiff--must dismiss the action without prejudice against that defendant or order that service be made within a specified time. But if the plaintiff shows good cause for the failure, the court must extend the time for service for an appropriate period. This Rule 4(i) does not apply to service in a foreign country under Rules 4.2(i), (j), (k), and (l).
Added Sept. 2, 2016, effective Jan. 1, 2017. Amended Aug. 31, 2017, effective Jan. 1, 2018.
16 A. R. S. Rules Civ. Proc., Rule 4, AZ ST RCP Rule 4
State Court Rules are current with amendments received through November 15, 2023. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through November 1, 2023.
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