The service of civil process plays a crucial role in cases brought before the court. Proper service is crucial in winning and achieving the desired resolution. To know what to serve and how to serve can sometimes be a difficult task. That is why it is always recommended to consult an Attorney as well as enlist a knowledgeable, experienced Constable to complete service.

Civil process servings include but are not limited to, Probate Summons, Motions, Subpoenas, Summons and Notices of all kinds.  These servings assist in the resolution of cases brought before the court.  Servings many times require action to be completed by the party being served.  This can range from appearance at a court date, to providing certain documents for a case.

The service of any civil process requires knowledge of rules and procedures specific to each type of service.  When these rules and procedures are not followed the consequences can be severe:  Cases can be delayed, forced to start over, and even lost because service of process was not completed properly.  With our knowledge and experience we complete every service promptly and always as stipulated by Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure.

Probate & Family Court

There are many different types of service that are issued by these Probate and Family Courts.  A few examples are; Divorce/Separate Summons, Petition for Guardianship, Domestic Relations Summons, Contempt Summons, Motion for Temporary Orders and Capiases.  While some of these servings require in-hand service upon the defendant, others can be left at the last and usual place of abode.


  • Subpoena Ad Testificandum = (Latin for “to testify under penalty”) a court order used to command a person to appear and give oral testimony at a hearing or trial.
  • Subpoena Duces Tecum = (Latin for “bring with you under penalty”) a court order used to command a person to appear and produce tangible evidence (documents, records, photos, etc.) for use at a hearing or trial.
  • Deposition Subpoena = a court order used to command a person to appear and testify at a deposition presided over by an officer authorized to administer oaths (notary public, justice of the peace, etc.) A deposition will take place outside the courtroom, usually at an attorney’s office.
  • Witness Summons = a court order used to compel a witness to appear at Court, before a person authorized to examine witnesses (i.e., hearing officer), or at a deposition, to testify about what he/she knows. This is also equivalent to a Subpoena.


A court summons is a legal document that is typically used to inform a Defendant of the beginning of a legal proceeding that requires his/her presence in court.  This is often accompanied by a complaint which the Defendant is required to answer.  A civil summons announces a date in which the Defendant must either appear in court or answer the complaint to the Plaintiff in writing.

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