||How is the Defendant Notified that He's Being Sued?|
At the time the Complaint is filed, the Clerk will issue a Summons which will have an Appearance Date
on it. The Appearance Date is the date the Defendant must show up in court for the first time. You may be able to
choose this date. This summons must be served on the Defendant in order for the Court to have the
legal power to hear your case.
The Clerk will ask you whether you want to serve this Summons by certified mail or in person by the Will
County Sheriff. Mail is cheaper and easier, but the Defendant may refuse to accept the mailing. If this
happens or you think it might happen, it is better to have the Will County Sheriff serve the Defendant.
If your Defendant lives in a different county than where you filed your suit, then you must have the
Sheriff of the county where the Defendant resides serve the summons. Outside of Cook County a licensed
private detective agency may also serve summons without special order of the court.
The Will County Sheriff's fee for service must be paid in advance. If you have filed an Application to sue
as an indigent individual and if you were allowed to file your case without paying a fee, you will
probably not have to pay the service fee, either.