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Presumption under California Evidence Code section 647

The presumption under California Evidence Code section 647 is the topic of this blog post. Section 647 creates a presumption of proper service of process if the documents were served by a registered process server. However, that presumption can be rebutted as shown by this blog post.

California Evidence Code section 647 states: “The return of a process server registered pursuant to Chapter 16 (commencing with Section 22350) of Division 8 of the Business and Professions Code upon process or notice establishes a presumption, affecting the burden of producing evidence, of the facts stated in the return.”

California Evidence Code section 604 states: “The effect of a presumption affecting the burden of producing evidence is to require the trier of fact to assume the existence of the presumed fact unless and until evidence is introduced which would support a finding of its nonexistence, in which case the trier of fact shall determine the existence or nonexistence of the presumed fact from the evidence and without regard to the presumption. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the drawing of any inference that may be appropriate.”

Thus it is presumed that service made by a registered process server in California was proper unless and until credible evidence is introduced that would support a finding that service was not proper.

Credible evidence could be documentary proof that at the time and date that a person was allegedly being served they were in fact not physically present at the address where service was allegedly made. Or it could include declarations from other persons who personally saw that person at another location at the time and date listed on the proof of service. It should be stressed that although many registered process servers are ethical, some are not.

The author worked on a case several years ago in which a couple who were allegedly served at an address in the Inland Empire area of Southern California were in fact at the exact date and time stated on the proof of service on an airplane flying from Dallas, Texas to Los Angeles, California! And they had the documentary evidence to that back that claim up!

Anyone looking to file a motion to quash service made by a registered process server should be sure to include competent declarations with any and all documentary evidence that supports their motion to quash.

Attorneys or parties in California who would like to view a portion of a sample motion to quash service for a California civil case that is sold by the author can see below.

Attorneys or parties in California who would like to view a portion of a sample motion to quash service for a California unlawful detainer (eviction) case can see below.

The author of this blog post, Stan Burman, is an entrepreneur and freelance paralegal who has worked in California and Federal litigation since 1995.

Follow the author on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/LegalDocsPro

You can subscribe to the author’s FREE weekly newsletter for California and Federal litigation by visiting:  http://www.legaldocspro.net/newsletter.htm

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