This article will provide guidance on How To Serve legal papers in Idaho. In order to exercise jurisdiction over a person, a party to a lawsuit serves that person Idaho Process Service, which is proper notice of first legal action, such as a summons or complaint, in order to provide that person a chance to reply to the court, body, or other tribunals, this Idaho Process Service must be done in a timely manner.

In most instances, plaintiffs in Idaho have thirty days to serve and submit the Proof of Service. Certain courts allow up to ninety days after the filing of the Claim. Inquiry about the deadline with the clerk should be made as per Idaho Process Service.


All documents filed in Small Claims Court must be served (delivered) to Defendant to comply with Idaho Process Service. If the lawsuit involves more than one Defendant, each must be served individually – even if they are married.

Additionally, in order to adequately comply with service, it is imperative to [A.]  fill out the Proof of Service as accessible from the Court Clerk and [B.] have someone eighteen or older– not the plaintiff-serve the Defendant.

For a charge, the Clerk may serve the Defendant with Idaho Process Service via certified mail, return receipt requested. Mail service, on the other hand, is often less costly than personal service. However, if Defendant fails to sign the return receipt or if it is signed by someone other than Defendant, then the plaintiff must serve Defendant again by personal service. The Clerk will inform the plaintiff if this occurs. 

It is necessary to reimburse the Sheriff’s Office (or the Marshal’s department for some counties) to complete the Idaho Process Service of the papers. The plaintiff must inform them exactly where to locate the Defendant. The Sheriff or Marshal will provide the Proof of Service.

In certain counties, the plaintiff will pay the Court Clerk, and the Sheriff or Marshal delivers the Proof of Service to the Clerk. The plaintiff can also pay a professional process server to complete Idaho Process Service. It would then be necessary to [A.]  furnish the server with a copy of the court forms. [B.] provide detailed instructions as to where to find the Defendant; [C.] requires the server to fill out a Proof of Service form. Some process servers file the Proof of Service with the Clerk. Others will return it to the plaintiff for them to file.

If a defendant cannot be easily found, some servers will perform skip tracing as a part of the Idaho Process Service. 


After serving Idaho Process Service, the server will fill out the server’s portion of the Proof of Service form and return it. Then Plaintiff must submit the Proof of Service with the Clerk during the trial or with the Affidavit.

If the Plaintiff misses their deadline to submit the  Proof of Service, or if they serve improperly,  they may file the claim again. If the Plaintiff files again within six months after making the initial claim, they won’t have to pay another filing fee.

A Subpoena may be served by an official authorized by law to serve the process or by any other person who is not a party and is not less than eighteen (18) years of age. Idaho Process Service of a subpoena upon a person titled therein must therefore be determined by supplying a copy to the person. Additionally, Idaho Process Service may be ensured by giving or offering the person the fees for one (1) day’s attendance and the mileage allowed by law. No prepayment tender of fees and mileage is necessary to witnesses subpoenaed by the attorney general or any prosecuting attorney on behalf of the state. When the subpoena is issued on behalf of the state or an official or agency, fees and mileage need not be paid. When Idaho Process Service is by an officer, it must be given with the officer’s certificate of service. When served by any other person, it must be returned with an affidavit of such person proving its service.

If a summons’ Idaho Process Service is not made upon a defendant within six (6) months after the filing of the complaint, the action shall be dismissed.


At the plaintiff’s request, the clerk of the district court will issue a summons and deliver it to Idaho Process Service. Also, separate or additional summons can then be issued against any defendant. If the Idaho Process Service of the summons and complaint is not made upon a defendant within six months after the filing of the complaint, the action will be dismissed. However, the plaintiff upon whose request such Idaho Process Service was required can show good cause why such Idaho Process Service was not made within that period, and the court can provide some respite for the same.  

Idaho Process Service of all process should be made by an officer authorized by law to serve process or by some person over the age of eighteen (18), not a party to the action. Any summons, writ, order, or other paper requiring service may be conveyed by fax machine process or telegraph. The copy transmitted may well be served or executed by the officer or person to whom sent and returned in the same manner and with the same force, effect, authority, and liability as to the original. The original should be submitted to the court from where Idaho Process Service was issued. 


A copy of the complaint should be served with the summons, except when the service is by publication, and the plaintiff must furnish the person doing Idaho Process Service with as many copies as are necessary. On individuals, Idaho Process Service should be done by delivering a copy of the summons and the complaint to the individual personally or by leaving copies thereof at the individual’s dwelling house or usual place of abode. The requirement for leaving copies at someone’s abode would be to leave the copies with some person over the age of eighteen years who lives there or by delivering a copy of the summons and the complaint to an agent authorized by appointment or by law. 

If a minor under fourteen years old is involved, Idaho Process Service should be done upon the guardian. This is the case if one has been appointed. Otherwise, Idaho Process Service can be done upon either the father or mother. If neither of these individuals can be found within the state, then Idaho Process Service should be levied upon any person having the care and custody of such minor and the minor. 

Similar Idaho Process Service can be done upon an incompetent person who has been judicially declared to be of unsound mind or incapable of conducting the incompetent person’s own affairs. Idaho Process Service is then levied upon the guardian if one has been appointed in the state. If there is no such guardian, Idaho Process Service can be done upon a competent adult member of the family with whom the incompetent person resides.  if the incompetent person is living in an institution, then service can be done to the chief executive officer of the institution. If any of the parties upon whom Idaho Process Service is directed to be made is a plaintiff, then Idaho Process Service shall be upon such other person as the court may designate.


Idaho Process Service can be done on a domestic or foreign corporation by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint to an officer, manager, or general agent authorized to receive Idaho Process Service.

Whenever any foreign corporation which has qualified in the state by filing with the Secretary of State or a domestic corporation or association shall not have designated a person residing in the state upon whom Idaho Process Service can be made, then Idaho Process Service of any summons and complaint against the corporation may be made by the party serving the same by mailing copies of the summons and complaint by registered or certified mail to the corporation addressed to its registered place of business.

 It is also required to be sent to the president or secretary of the corporation at the addresses shown on the most current annual statement filed with the Secretary of State. Service is then complete after the mailing by certified or registered mail is done. The party or attorney serving the corporation must make a return certificate indicating compliance and attach a receipt of the mailing. 


Upon the state of Idaho or any agency, Idaho Process Service should be made by delivering two (2) copies of the summons and complaint to the attorney general or an assistant attorney general. Upon any other governmental subdivision, Idaho Process Service is instead made by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint to the chief executive officer or the secretary or clerk thereof. In all actions brought under specific statutes requiring Idaho Process Service to be made upon specific individuals or officials, service will mostly be made under the statute as well. 

Idaho Process Service can also be accomplished by an acknowledged written admission by the individual that the individual has received Idaho Process Service, stating the capacity in which such Idaho Process Service was received.

Whenever a statute of Idaho provides for service of a summons, or of a notice, or order instead of summons, upon a party who is not an inhabitant of the state, Idaho Process Service should still follow the overall requirements of the Idaho state. Whenever the summons, notice, or order is served by publication, it should contain in general terms a statement of the nature of the grounds of the claim, and copies of the summons and complaint shall be mailed to the last known address most likely to give notice to the party.


Personal service inside and outside the state is complete on the date of delivery. Service by publication is complete upon the last publication date. Other than a subpoena, all processes may be served anywhere within territorial limits of the state and, when a statute or rule so provides, beyond the state’s territorial limits. A subpoena may be served as provided in rule 45.

Proof of Idaho Process Service is required in writing specifying the manner of service, the date, and place of service, and unless the party served files an appearance, the return must be filed with the court. In case of service by a sheriff or any peace officer or court marshal anywhere within the state of Idaho, a certificate of the officer indicating service is required.  If Idaho Process Service is by any person, proof of service is by affidavit of the such person indicating the person is over eighteen years and served as required by these rules.

Suppose service is by mailing, not requiring proof of receipt. In that case, proof of service is seen by an affidavit of mailing by a person over eighteen who mailed such Idaho Process Service indicating the documents mailed and the date and address to which they were mailed. This is similar to certified or registered mail, which also requires postal receipts indicating whether the person receiving the service of processed by mail.

If service is by publication, the poof of service is by affidavit of the newspaper publisher or the publisher’s designated agent over eighteen, stating the dates of publication and attaching a true copy of the publication. However, the party’s acknowledged written admission that service of process was received is also acceptable. It is required for all the returns of service to list and identify all documents served.

At any time in its discretion, the court may allow any Idaho Process Service or proof of service to be amended unless it appears that material prejudice would result in the substantial right of the party against whom the process was issued.


Idaho Process Service of a subpoena on a designated person is accomplished by conveying a copy of the subpoena to the person. This Idaho Process Service is only complete if it is accompanied by simultaneously offering or trying to offer to the person, if requested, the fees for one day’s attendance and the mileage allowed by law. 

Neither advance payment nor tender of fees and mileage is required of witnesses subpoenaed by the attorney general or any prosecuting attorney acting on behalf of the state. Fees and travel are not required when the subpoena is submitted on the part of the state or an official or agency. When served by an officer, it should be returned with the officer’s certificate of service; when served by another person, it must be returned with the person’s affidavit of service.

how to domesticate an OUT-OF-STATE SUBPOENA in idaho

Issuing an out-of-state subpoena pursuant to the Uniform Interstate Deposition and Discovery Act (UIDDA)-Idaho, the clerk of the court in the county where discovery is to be performed in this state must be presented with a foreign subpoena before it may be requested that a subpoena be issued under this section. Subpoenas issued under this law do not obligate a person to appear in court in Idaho.

Second, the clerk of a court in this state must swiftly issue a summons to the person to whom the international subpoena is sent, in line with that court’s process.

A subpoena issued for a foreign defendant must include: [A.]   the terminology appropriate for the subpoena from abroad; and [B.]  part of the subpoena, it must include or be accompanied with the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all counsel of record and of any party that is not represented by counsel.


Proof of service of a notice to take a deposition or the presentation of a stipulation for its taking connotes adequate permission for the clerk of the district court for the county in which the action is pending. This is also applicable to the clerk of the district court for the county in which the deposition is being obtained to be used in another state or country to issue subpoenas for the person named or described. The subpoena may require the person to whom it is directed to provide specified books, papers, documents, or physical objects that comprise or include evidence related to any of the topics covered. Even so, the subpoena will be subject to the requirements in the statute, except that if the action is pending outside of the state, the court issuing the subpoena will have the power to enforce such provisions.

A state citizen may be compelled to appear for an examination only in the county in which they live, works, or transact business in person. A nonresident of the state may be compelled to appear in any county in the state upon receipt of a subpoena. Subpoenas for presence at a hearing or trial may be issued at the request of any party. Subpoenas for a district court or judges division hearing or trial may be served at any location within the state.

Failure by any person without adequate excuse to obey a subpoena served upon the person may be deemed a contempt of the court from which the subpoena was issued, in addition to the penalties provided by law.


Documents can be faxed at (800) 296-0115, emailed, mailed, or dropped off at any of our locations. We do require pre-payment and accept all major credit and debit cards. Once payment is processed, your sales receipt is immediately emailed for your records.

Drop-offs must call and make an appointment first to be added to building security to permit access to our office. Documents for service must be in a sealed envelope with payment in the form of a money order or attorney check (WE DO NOT ACCEPT CASH) payable to UNDISPUTED LEGAL INC.; All documents are received by our receptionist.


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1. or if service cannot be had upon any of them, then as provided by order of the court, and unless the court otherwise orders, also upon the incompetent.

2. or whenever such agent of a corporation shall resign, be removed from office, or shall have died or shall have moved from the state, or if after due diligence neither the designated agent of the corporation nor any officer or managing agent of the corporation can be found within the state,

3. municipal corporation, quasi-municipal corporation, or public board

4. or found within the state or upon unknown persons 

5. Rule 5(a). Service and filing of pleadings and other papers – Service – When required. Every order required by its terms to be served, every pleading after the original complaint unless the court otherwise orders because of numerous defendants, every written motion other than one which may be heard ex parte, and every written notice, appearance, demand, the offer of judgment, the designation of record on appeal, brief and memorandum of law, and similar paper shall be served upon each of the parties affected thereby. Still, no service need be made on parties in default for failure to appear except that pleadings asserting new or additional claims for relief against them shall be served upon them in the manner provided for service of summons in Rule


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