Monday, November 27, 2023

Sending a Complaint to Insurance Adjuster Does Not Amount to Proper Service of Process

In the case of London-Walker v. Walgreens Family of Cos., No. 23-CV-2868 (E.D. Pa. Oct. 4, 2023, Kenney, J.), the court dismissed the trip and fall case under service of process issues raised by the defense.

According to the Opinion, the Plaintiff filed a Complaint but did not serve it for five (5) years.

The Plaintiff only served the Complaint after receiving a Notice of Proposed Termination issued by the court of common pleas.

In rejecting one of the arguments by the Plaintiff, the court pointed to the well-settled rule that informally emailing a copy of a Complaint to an insurance adjuster does not constitute valid service.

The court noted that, absent any evidence that the actual Defendant learned of the lawsuit, the action was subject to dismissal under the Lamp v. Heyman line of cases as being barred by the statute of limitations.

Anyone wishing to review a copy of this decision may click this LINK.  The Court's companion Order can be viewed HERE.

I thank Attorney James A. Beck of the Philadelphia office of the Reed Smith law firm for bringing this case to my attention.

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