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Civil Process


Process Server Tom Davis in a khaki shirt with gold department star on left chest.

Process Server Tom Davis
620-768-9288
620-223-1440 Ext.272-Office
tdavis@bourboncountyks.org

 

Civil Process - what's that?

Through television drama, most people are probably more familiar with the Criminal, rather than the Civil, court system. But the typical Process Server deals with more civil papers than he does criminal. Indeed, Process Servers are responsible for keeping the incredible mass of civil paperwork moving - without Process Servers, the civil system would collapse.

The Civil Divisions of Kansas District Courts handle all non-criminal proceedings and litigation, including basic tort and contract law, small claims, limited, and civil; cases concerning tax matters, estates, trusts, guardianships and conservatorships, adoptions, divorces, protection from abuse and stalking, care and treatment, paternity and child custody, juvenile, and other miscellaneous issues. Papers that may be served in these proceedings include the summons, notice to appear, order to appear, contempt citation, subpoena, garnishment, foreclosure, restraining order, executions (not the electric chair kind, though!), attachment, injunction, forcible detainer, ex parte order, writ of replevin, and even more.

Civil Process is the procedure used to give legal notice to someone of a court proceeding concerning that person so as to enable him to respond in his best interest.   Usually, notice is furnished by serving a set of documents (called "process", or papers) to the person to be notified, and the sooner that person get the papers, the more time he has to prepare.

"Serving" generally means "delivery to" and service may take many forms, including personal, residential, agent, first class or certified mail, publication, and tacking. Serving does not mean arresting; only delivering. Under Kansas law, a person does not have to be touched with the paper to be served, nor does a person have to sign for the paper. Also, when a person refuses service, the offer to serve, coupled with the refusal, constitutes service, and the person served risks a judgment against him if he fails to respond to the paper. Please remember that only an attorney can give legal advice, not the Sheriff. The Sheriff can only carry out the orders of the Court.


Civil Process Fees  Effective July 1, 2013

Pursuant to state law, the Sheriff's Office will not serve any document unless it is accompanied by the $15.00 Service of Process Fee. It is the policy of the Sheriff's Office to only accept checks or money orders for this fee, made payable to the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office. If the process fee is not attached to the papers, they will be returned to the court as "Unable to serve without proper fee."

IN STATE SHERIFF FEE PAYMENT PROCEDURES

  1. Payment by Check/Money Order-at the time of filing with the District Court, each paper will have a check/money order attached to the top copy in the amount of $15.00 payable to the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office.
  2. Fee Exempt-filings which are exempt from fees will have that fact noted on the top copy prior to filing.
  3. Cash cannot be accepted - papers received with cash will be returned as "Unable to serve without proper fee."

EXEMPTIONS FOR IN-STATE FEE

The following Kansas Civil Process is exempt from the $15.00 filing fee:

  1. Protection from Abuse or Protection from Stalking papers.
  2. Papers filed by Government Entities.
  3. Post Decree Motions in divorce cases.
  4. Probate orders filed under KSA Chapter 59 for Mental, Drug and Alcohol Commitments.
  5. Criminal subpoenas.

OUT OF COUNTY FEE PAYMENT PROCEDURES

  1. Each paper that is filed in the Bourbon County District Court for service to addresses outside Bourbon County, but within the state of Kansas, should have any fees attached made payable to the Sheriff's Office of the jurisdiction in which it is to be served, and be sent to that jurisdiction.
  2. Papers filed in Kansas judicial districts outside of the Bourbon County District Court, which are to be served in Bourbon County, should have any fees attached made payable to the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office.

OUT OF STATE FEE PAYMENT PROCEDURES

  1. At the time of filing, each out-of-state paper will have a check/money order attached to the top copy in the amount of $50.00 payable to the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office.
  2. Cash cannot be accepted - papers received with cash will be returned as "Unable to serve without proper fee."
  3. Documents to be served should be sent to the following address:
    Bourbon County Sheriff's Office, 293 E. 20th St Fort Scott, Kansas 66701 
  4. Documents should be accompanied by the following:
    • A self addressed stamped envelope.
    • Instructions for the completion of the return of service.
    • A cover letter that lists information on the person being served (address, phone, employer, etc.) and contact information for the person issuing the documents.

EXEMPTIONS FOR OUT OF STATE FEE

The following Out of State Civil Process is exempt from the $50.00 fee currently charged by the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office.

  1. Protective Orders which meet the requirements of The Violence Against Women's Act 18 U.S.C. 2265.
  2. Papers filed by Government Entities.
  3. For further information contact the Bourbon County Sheriff's Office at 620-223-1440 Option 5, Monday through Friday 8 AM to 4 PM Central.

Other Papers

The Bourbon County Sheriff's Office will serve only documents originating from a Court and bearing its stamp and case number. Private papers originating from an attorney's office will not be served.