When you are required by statute, federal rule, or local rule to serve a document other than original process on a party who is not a registered CM/ECF user, you must serve it in accordance with Fed. R. Civ. P. 5 and electronically file a Certificate of Service with the Clerk’s Office. However, a Certificate of Service is not required when the document is served electronically through CM/ECF as to all parties. See Local Rule 102.1.c.
Any party to a case subject to electronic filing who is represented by counsel is expected to have at least one attorney who is a registered user of CM/ECF. In cases subject to electronic filing, the Clerk’s Office will not mail paper copies of documents to attorneys.
If a party is represented by at least one attorney who is a registered user of CM/ECF, electronic service on that attorney constitutes service on the party. As long as a document is electronically served on at least one attorney for a party, service need not be made on any other attorney for that party even if the other attorney is not a registered user of CM/ECF.
Pro se parties must be served by paper as they usually are not registered users of CM/ECF.
The Certificate of Service may be filed as a part of the document or as a separate document.
As a Part of the Document
Before converting your document to PDF and filing it electronically, check to see which parties will not be electronically noticed.
- Click on Utilities, Mailings, Mailing Info for a Case, and enter your case number. The system will show who will be electronically noticed and who will not be noticed.
- Add a traditional Certificate of Service to your document, stating specifically who copies were mailed to (or served by other means). It is not sufficient to state that copies will be mailed to any party not electronically noticed. Then file your document using the standard filing procedure.
As a Separate Document
If you will not know whether a party will be electronically noticed until after you file your document and see the Notice of Electronic Filing (NEF), you can create and file a separate notice of service. A sample Certificate of Service is available here.
- Create a Certificate of Service in your word processing program and convert it to PDF.
- To file the Certificate of Service, click on Civil, Service of Process, and choose Certificate of Service from the drop-down menu.