U.S. District Court Allows Email Service Of Foreign Resident. Last week the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah allowed a plaintiff to serve his complaint and summons by email upon the defendant, a resident of South Korea who plaintiff had previously been unable to locate and serve. Bullex v. Yoo, No. 10-668 (D. Utah Apr. 1, 2011). Despite diligent efforts, the plaintiff had been unable to serve the defendant, and the court explained that alternative service outside of the United States is permissible under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(f)(3) and comports with constitutional notions of due process if such service is directed by the court, and not prohibited by international agreement. Given the facts of this case, which included a reasonable showing that the defendant had an accurate email address in light of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) requirement that individual registrants maintain an up-to-date and accurate email address an accurate email address with ICANN, the court found that alternative service by email provided "the best opportunity" to make sure that the defendant was apprised of the action and afford him an opportunity to object.
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