Rule 2.107 Service and Filing of Pleadings and Other Papers

(A) Service; When Required.

(1) Unless otherwise stated in this rule, every party who has filed a pleading, an appearance, or a motion must be served with a copy of every paper later filed in the action. A nonparty who has filed a motion or appeared in response to a motion need only be served with papers that relate to that motion.

(2) Except as provided in MCR 2.603, after a default is entered against a party, further service of papers need not be made on that party unless he or she has filed an appearance or a written demand for service of papers. However, a pleading that states a new claim for relief against a party in default must be served in the manner provided by MCR 2.105.

(3) If an attorney appears on behalf of a person who has not received a copy of the complaint, a copy of the complaint must be delivered to the attorney on request.

(4) All papers filed on behalf of a defendant must be served on all other defendants not in default.

(B) Service on Attorney or Party.

(1) Service required or permitted to be made on a party for whom an attorney has appeared in the action must be made on the attorney except as follows:

(a) The original service of the summons and complaint must be made on the party as provided by MCR 2.105;

(b) When a contempt proceeding for disobeying a court order is initiated, the notice or order must be personally delivered to the party, unless the court orders otherwise;

(c) After a final judgment or final order has been entered and the time for an appeal of right has passed, papers must be served on the party unless the rule governing the particular postjudgment procedure specifically allows service on the attorney;

(d) The court may order service on the party.

(2) If two or more attorneys represent the same party, service of papers on one of the attorneys is sufficient. An attorney who represents more than one party is entitled to service of only one copy of a paper.

(3) If a party prosecutes or defends the action on his or her own behalf, service of papers must be made on the party in the manner provided by subrule (C).

(C) Manner of Service. Service of a copy of a paper on an attorney must be made by delivery or by mailing to the attorney at his or her last known business address or, if the attorney does not have a business address, then to his or her last known residence address. Service on a party must be made by delivery or by mailing to the party at the address stated in the party's pleadings.

(1) Delivery to Attorney. Delivery of a copy to an attorney within this rule means

(a) handing it to the attorney personally, or, if agreed to by the parties, e-mailing it to the attorney as allowed under MCR 2.107(C)(4);

(b) leaving it at the attorney's office with the person in charge or, if no one is in charge or present, by leaving it in a conspicuous place; or

(c) if the office is closed or the attorney has no office, by leaving it at the attorney's usual residence with some person of suitable age and discretion residing there.

(2) Delivery to Party. Delivery of a copy to a party within this rule means

(a) handing it to the party personally, or, if agreed to by the parties, e-mailing it to the party as allowed under MCR 2.107(C)(4); or

(b) leaving it at the party's usual residence with some person of suitable age and discretion residing there.

(3) Mailing. Mailing a copy under this rule means enclosing it in a sealed envelope with first class postage fully prepaid, addressed to the person to be served, and depositing the envelope and its contents in the United States mail. Service by mail is complete at the time of mailing.

(4)   E-mail. Some or all of the parties may agree to e-mail service among themselves by filing a stipulation in that case. Some or all of the parties may agree to e-mail service by a court by filing an agreement with the court to do so. E-mail service shall be subject to the following conditions:

(a)   The stipulation or agreement for service by e-mail shall set forth the e-mail addresses of the parties or attorneys that agree to e-mail service, which shall include the same e-mail address currently on file with the State Bar of Michigan. If an attorney is not a member of the State Bar of Michigan, the e-mail address shall be the e-mail address currently on file with the appropriate registering agency in the state of the attorney’s admission. Parties and attorneys who have stipulated or agreed to service by e-mail under this subsection shall immediately notify all other parties and the court if the party’s or attorney’s e-mail address changes.

(b)   The parties shall set forth in the stipulation or agreement all limitations and conditions concerning e-mail service, including but not limited to:

(i)   the maximum size of the document that may be attached to an e-mail;

(ii)   designation of exhibits as separate documents;

(iii)   the obligation (if any) to furnish paper copies of e-mailed documents; and

(iv)   the names and e-mail addresses of other individuals in the office of an attorney of record designated to receive e-mail service on behalf of a party.

(c)   Documents served by e-mail must be in PDF format or other format that prevents the alteration of the document contents.

(d)   A paper served by e-mail that an attorney is required to sign may include the attorney’s actual signature or a signature block with the name of the signatory accompanied by “s/” or “/s/.” That designation shall constitute a signature for all purposes, including those contemplated by MCR 2.114(C) and (D).

(e)   Each e-mail that transmits a document shall include a subject line that identifies the case by court, party name, case number, and the title or legal description of the document(s) being sent.

(f)   An e-mail transmission sent after 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time shall be deemed to be served on the next day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday. Service by e-mail under this subrule is treated as service by delivery under MCR 2.107(C)(1).

(g)   A party may withdraw from a stipulation or agreement for service by e-mail if that party notifies the other party or parties and the court in writing at least 28 days in advance of the withdrawal.

(h)   Service by e-mail is complete upon transmission, unless the party making service learns that the attempted service did not reach the e-mail address of the intended recipient. If an e-mail is returned as undeliverable, the party, attorney, or court must serve the paper or other document by regular mail under MCR 2.107(C)(3), and include a copy of the return notice indicating that the e-mail was undeliverable. A party, attorney, or court must also retain a notice that the e-mail was undeliverable.

 

(i)   The e-mail sender shall maintain an archived record of sent items that shall not be purged until the conclusion of the case, including the disposition of all appeals.

(D) Proof of Service. Except as otherwise provided by MCR 2.104, 2.105, or 2.106, proof of service of papers required or permitted to be served may be by written acknowledgment of service, affidavit of the person making the service, a statement regarding the service verified under MCR 2.114(B), or other proof satisfactory to the court. The proof of service may be included at the end of the paper as filed. Proof of service must be filed promptly and at least at or before a hearing to which the paper relates.

(E) Service Prescribed by Court. When service of papers after the original complaint cannot reasonably be made because there is no attorney of record, because the party cannot be found, or for any other reason, the court, for good cause on ex parte application, may direct in what manner and on whom service may be made.

(F) Numerous Parties. In an action in which there is an unusually large number of parties on the same side, the court on motion or on its own initiative may order that

(1) they need not serve their papers on each other;

(2) responses to their pleadings need only be served on the party to whose pleading the response is made;

(3) a cross-claim, counterclaim, or allegation in an answer demanding a reply is deemed denied by the parties not served; and

(4) the filing of a pleading and service on an adverse party constitutes notice of it to all parties.

A copy of the order must be served on all parties in the manner the court directs.

(G) Filing With Court Defined. Pleadings and other materials filed with the court as required by these rules must be filed with the clerk of the court in accordance with standards prescribed by MCR 1.109(C), except that the judge to whom the case is assigned may accept materials for filing when circumstances warrant. A judge who does so shall note the filing date on the materials and immediately transmit them to the clerk. It is the responsibility of the party who presented the materials to confirm that they have been filed with the clerk. If the clerk records the receipt of materials on a date other than the filing date, the clerk shall record the filing date on the register of actions.