Service of Summons
ATTENTION!!! The U.S. Postal Service has increased its restricted delivery charge to $4.75 effective January 27, 2013. Each service of process being sent by restricted delivery should be accompanied by a check or money order for $14.75 (the statutory fee plus the restricted delivery fee).
The Secretary of State serves summonses on non-residents under KRS 454.210, the long-arm statute; KRS 188.020, the non-resident motorist statute; and KRS 304.3-230, the foreign insurers statute. The Secretary of State does not serve as agent for service of process for foreign entities authorized to transact business in the state, rather, the corporations' registered agents function as agents for service of process. The Secretary of State serves as agent for foreign in-active entities under KRS 14A.9-060 and KRS 14A.9-080. The Secretary of State shall collect a fee of ten dollars ($10) each time process is served on him or her under KRS 14A.2-060.
To search summonses filed during the last 3 years, please click here.
||Procedures and Fees
In order to serve a summons, the Secretary of State must receive two copies of the signed and dated summons and two copies of the complaint attested (stamped certified that it is in fact a true copy) by the court clerk.
These documents must be accompanied by a proper fee: $10.00 per defendant if service is by certified mail (anyone can sign for it) OR $14.75 per defendant if service is by restricted certified mail (only the defendant can sign for it) OR $10.00 per defendant if service is by registered mail (for service outside the United States). Provide addresses for each defendant being served.
There is no service fee assessed for serving emergency protective orders and for petitioners proceeding in forma pauperis, according to KRS 453.190 and KRS 403.740, respectively.
State agencies are served through the Attorney General’s office, not the Office of the Secretary of State.
Questions regarding summonses should be addressed to your attorney, the attorney filing the lawsuit, or the court or administrative agency in which the lawsuit was filed.
The Kentucky Secretary of State has no power to make a legal disposition of the case. The responsive pleadings should be filed with the clerk of the court or agency where the lawsuit was filed and served directly on the opposing party.
No copy of future pleadings need to be sent to the Office of the Secretary of State unless you wish for our staff to serve the pleading under a particular statute or rule and pay for the service.
For more information regarding summonses, please contact the Summonses Branch of the Office of the Secretary of State:
- by phone at (502) 564-3490;
- by fax at (502) 564-5687;
- by Email; or
- by mailing your inquiry to:
Office of the Secretary of State
700 Capital Avenue, Suite 86
Frankfort, KY 40601
The Office of the Secretary of State is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm ET.