February 2, 2009

Foxy Brown - Gotta Serve Somebody

Raymond v. Marchand [p/k/a Foxy Brown], No. 13413/08, 2/2/09 N.Y.L.J. "Decision of Interest" (Sup.Ct., Kings Co. decided Jan. 23, 2009) - ordering a traverse hearing on the issue of service of process.

Hip Hop artist Foxy Brown moved to vacate a default judgment entered against her. The complaint alleged defendant assaulted plaintiff and criminal charges were filed against defendant. Upon appearing in Supreme Court on the criminal charges, plaintiff alleged Foxy Brown was served when she was leaving the courthouse. Foxy Brown denied the allegation, arguing she was never served with legal papers. The court noted the process server's affidavit did not address the manner of service, and that the facts surrounding the service of process as presented by both parties was "so unclear as to raise a question" of the validity of the service. Also, though courts look unfavorably on service of civil process in any part of the courthouse building, it was not unlawful to serve a defendant in a courthouse unless it was done in a manner that caused a disturbance to court proceeding. Where service was allegedly made outside the courthouse, there was no such claim, but ordered a traverse hearing on the issue of service of process.