service of process(redirected from Return of service)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
service of process
Completion of all legal requirements to give official notice to a person regarding a lawsuit filed against that person.After service of process,the defendant will have a certain number of days to file an answer. It is critical to determine the correct service date and to keep track of the deadline to file an answer, which could be as short as 14 days in most states. Failing to file an answer will result in a default judgment in which the court will give the person filing the suit—the plaintiff—everything that person asked for,no questions asked.When the judgment becomes final and not appealable, after the passage of another period of time, the plaintiff may begin efforts to seize any real or personal property he or she can find to satisfy the judgment.