M E M O
TO:Joint Procedure Committee
RE:Rule 4, N.D.R.Civ.P.; Persons Subject to Jurisdiction--Process--Service
The language and organization of Rule 4 are revised to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
A substantive addition is made in Rule 4(c)(3)(B) to include the new requirement, also included in the proposed revision of N.D.R.Civ.P. 3, that a complaint be filed within 12 months of service of the summons.
Rule 4(d) discusses acceptable methods of service of process in North Dakota. N.D.C.C. § 28-01-38, which was discussed in the accompanying memo on N.D.R.Civ.P. 3, gives special protections to parties who employ a certain method of service of process -- service by sheriff or country official. N.D.C.C. § 28-01-38 ignores the other acceptable methods of service described in Rule 4(d), likely because the Rule 4(d) service alternatives were not available when Dakota Territory C.Civ.P. 1877 § 62, N.D.C.C. § 28-01-38's progenitor, was implemented.
Because N.D.C.C. § 28-01-38's focus on sheriff service is outmoded given the other service methods available under Rule 4(d), the committee may wish to consider whether Rule 4 should be amended to state that N.D.C.C. § 28-01-38 is superseded. Such a change would be appropriate if the committee decides to adopt the proposed changes to Rule 4 and N.D.R.Civ.P. 3 imposing a filing deadline for the complaint.