Home Table of Contents

Rule 5. Service

Arizona Revised Statutes AnnotatedRules of Small Claims ProcedureEffective: January 1, 2020

Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated
Rules of Small Claims Procedure
Effective: January 1, 2020
17B A.R.S. Rules of Small Claims Procedure, Rule 5
Rule 5. Service
(a) When to Serve the Defendant. Not later than 45 days after the filing date of the complaint, the plaintiff must file proof of service of process on each defendant, or the plaintiff must transfer the matter out of the small claims division. As to any defendant for whom proof of service of process is not timely filed, the court shall dismiss without prejudice the complaint against them.
(b) How to Serve the Defendant. The plaintiff must serve each defendant with the complaint, and the summons and Notice to the Plaintiff and Defendant provided by the court by either:
(1) Registered or Certified Mail. The plaintiff may serve the defendant by registered or certified mail, with a “return receipt requested.” The plaintiff must file the return receipt with the court within 45 days of the complaint filing date to establish that the defendant was served. The return receipt can be the card returned to the plaintiff by the postal or delivery service or the return receipt printed from the postal or delivery service's website; or
(2) Constable, Sheriff, or Private Process Server. The plaintiff may arrange for personal service on the defendant by a constable, sheriff, or private process server. If personal service is used, an affidavit of service must be filed with the court within 45 days of the complaint filing date.
(c) Court's Notice to the Parties. Upon receipt of the proof of service of process, the court will mail a notice to the plaintiff and to any defendant who has appeared in the lawsuit informing them that the court may dismiss the case 65 days after service of process was completed unless a hearing has been scheduled, or the plaintiff has applied for the entry of a default judgment as described in Rule 140 of the Justice Court Rules of Civil Procedure.


Added Aug. 27, 2019, effective Jan. 1, 2020.
17B A. R. S. Rules Small Claims Proc., Rule 5, AZ ST SM CL Rule 5
State Court Rules are current with amendments received through April 1, 2024. The Code of Judicial Administration is current with amendments received through April 1, 2024.
End of Document