Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ for Process Serving

  • Who can serve legal documents/Papers?
  • How long does it take to process serve legal documents?
  • What if the person does not accept the papers?
  • Do I need a process server?
  • Can a Process Server file my papers with the Court?

Currently in Ontario, anyone over 18 years old can serve legal documents and court papers. An advantage of using Motion Legal Service Limited is that we are a neutral third party that can provide evidence that there was either a successful or unsuccessful attempt(s) to serve the document on the opposite party. If it came down to it, the serving party would be able to call the process server as a witness to attest to the service of the document.
Steps on serving documents on YouTube
You Counsel on how to serve Court Documents in Ontario on YouTube

Our practice is to try the service immediately, within the next 24 to 48 hours, always coordinating with our clients. We give to our clients the opportunity to set down in our website the deadline date. Under the Ontario Rules of Civil Procedures, there are limitations periods for serving documents, depending on what type of document and the stage of the process. We closely monitor this period, which is extremely important to avoid the expiration of your claim. Currently, during the Covid-19 epidemic, a profound technological revolution has begun within our judicial system, aimed at simplifying, and streamlining judicial processes with the use of the internet and service of documents by email. In any case, the prescription periods remain the same. We have different variety of services that we offer to our clients. We can perform the service requested on the same day or Rush service (which means that we will repeatedly try at the address that day until we finish the job or conclude that we cannot do it, that is, the person is on vacation, is out of the country, or no longer resides at the address). Sensitive service (that is, in the next five days, which means that we repeatedly test the address to meet the deadline set by the customer) and regular service (we try every day or every other day in the next fourteen days until the person is home and let's get done the job).

In most cases the person being served a document does not have to accept service to be considered effective or sufficient according to the Rules of Civil Procedures in Ontario. If the defendant or respondent comes to the door but refuses the papers being served, the process server may just have to leave them at their feet and then walk away. Service performed in this manner is “legally executed” as long targeted person is properly identified and described. Our process servers use worksheets to keep notes, records with details of their task, always available as exhibits in Court. Our clients would be able to call Motion Legal Services Limited as a witness to attest to the service of the document.

It is always best to hire a professional process server to serve your Plaintiff's Claim, Statement of Claim, or Application, especially when it comes to claims in Small Claims Court and Superior Court. Generally, the judges will recognize the person serving the document and believe that the document was properly served. If you try to serve the document yourself and the defendant disputes the service, you may find it more difficult to prove that you did. Defendants will react unpredictably when served with a legal document, as Court can be an intimidating test to learn from. Having a professional process server serve your document will eliminate the animosity between you and the defendant and ensure that both parties to the dispute save face. In addition, we often collect useful information that will help you with your case in the future. For example, we may obtain license plate numbers, names and description about individuals, pictures, or phone numbers that will become valuable information to you.

“On July 24, 2019, a process server knocked on a door in Tulsa, Oklahoma with eviction papers in hand. He attempted to serve Christopher Barnett, a former GOP candidate for governor who ran in 2018 and finished eighth in his 10-person field. Security cameras by Barnett’s door captured the scene as the process server attempted to serve the papers before being shot in the elbow. Although the server’s injuries were non-fatal, the incident still reminds process servers everywhere how quickly a normal serve can turn lethal.”


  • Yes, Motion Legal Services Limited will file your documents at the courthouse and we offer the services of filing papers at Court in the following jurisdictions:
    • Don Mills, Etobicoke, Guelph, Hagersville, Kitchener, Markham, North York, Paris, Pickering, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, St. Catharines, Thornhill, Toronto, Weston, Woodbridge, Acton, Aurora, Bolton, Fonthill, Georgetown, Maple, New Market, Niagara Falls, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Oshawa, Stouffville, Thorold, Waterloo, Whitby, Barrie, Bowmanville, Bradford, Caledon, Courtice, Dunnville, Elmira, Erin, Fergus, Fort Erie, Grand Valley, Jarvis, Keswick, London, New Hamburg, Orangeville, Port Colborne, Port Dover, Shelburne, Simcoe, St. Thomas, Stratford, Tillsonburg, Uxbridge, Welland, Woodstock, Ancaster, Burlington, Dundas, Fruitland, Greensville, Millgrove, Stoney Creek, Waterdown, Alberton, Beamsville, Binbrook, Brantford, Campbellville, Carlisle, Copetown, Freelton, Grimsby, Halton Hills, Jerseyville, Milton, Mississauga, Mount Hope, Oakville, Port Credit, Smithville, Streetsville, Vineland, Vinemount, Winona, Ajax, Bramalea, Brampton, Cambridge, Caledonia, Cayuga, Concord.
  • Make a start today with serving your document online or call us at (226) 270-4262
  • Does my document need to be notarized or commissioned?
  • Who is a Notary or Commissioner?
  • Who can notarize my document?
  • Who can authenticate my document?
  • How do I find a Canadian notary?
  • How is my document notarized?
  • What can my notary do?
  • Find out if your document needs to be notarized before you book an appointment with Motion Legal Services Limited. If your original document cannot be notarized or commissioned, we may be able to help you, please do not hesitate to reach us at or (226) 270-4262.
  • According to the Notaries Act, RSO 1990, a Notary Public is a Public Servant authorized to administer oaths or to take affidavits or declarations in Ontario. He or She carries the following Powers:
    • 3 (1) Subject to subsection (2), a notary public may,
      (a) witness or certify, and attest, the execution of a document;
      (b) certify and attest a true copy of a document;
      (c) exercise the powers of a commissioner for taking affidavits in Ontario; and
      (d) exercise any other powers and perform any other functions specified by the regulations made under this Act. 2020, c. 7, Sched. 13, s. 2.
  • In Ontario, a Notary who’s appointed by the Attorney General of Ontario under the Notaries Act can notarize your document.
  • The Notary Public whose signature is recognized by the Ontario Government can authenticate your document.
  • If the Ontario Government is unable to recognize the signature of your notary, invite your notary to register with the Government. The notary can do this by providing a specimen signature.
  • Search online for "notary public". The rules governing Canadian notaries vary between provinces and territories. The notary will tell you what they are able to do to notarize your document. At Motion Legal Services Limited we will be happy to help you, please click to book an appointment.
  • A Canadian notary signs and seals your document. The notary can also prepare a separate certificate (sign it and attach it to your document).
  • When signing your document, the notary must:
    • have a valid certificate of appointment
    • handwrite their signature in ink
    • apply a stamp or seal showing their full name as it appears on their certificate of appointment and the Canadian province or territory in which they have been appointed
    • indicate the act they performed (e.g. certifying a true copy)
    • indicate the date on which they notarized the document
    • indicate the date on which their appointment as a notary expires (if applicable)
  • In signing your document, the notary may, for example:
    • witness a signature
    • receive a declaration or affidavit
    • certify that a document is a true copy of the original
    • Translated documents
  • A Canadian notary may also be able to certify a translation to be true if they speak both languages. If that is the case, ensure that the notary indicates on the document both of the following:
    • They attest to speaking both languages
    • They certify the accuracy of the translation
  • If you are looking for more information please go to Government of Canada or to Guide for Newly Appointed Commissioners for Taking Affidavits.