SCOA: Certified Mail Service on LLC Valid Despite Postal “Restricted Delivery” Error

In the case Advance Fiberglass, LLC v. Rovnaghi, 2011 Ark. 516 (decided December 8, 2011), the Arkansas Supreme Court held that service sent via certified mail with restricted delivery to the agent of the defendant limited liability company was proper even though the agent did not sign the mail receipt.

The certified mail, with “restricted delivery” requested, was addressed to Bryan S. Jeffrey, the LLC’s agent. But an employee of Mr. Jeffrey, rather than Mr. Jeffrey himself, signed the certified mail receipt.

The LLC sought dismissal on the basis of insufficient service of process.

Applying subparts (d)(5) and (d)(8)(A)(i) of Rule 4 of the Arkansas Rules of Civil Procedure, the supreme court held that the certified mail delivery, with the receipt signed by Mr. Jeffrey’s employee, was sufficient to effect valid service because the rules do not require “restricted delivery” for certified mail service on a corporation or other organization, such as an LLC.

Rule 4(d)(8)(A)(i) permits service on a corporation or organization via certified mail with return receipt requested. The fact that “restricted delivery” was requested but was not properly carried out by the mail carrier does not invalidate the service.

Arkansas Judiciary link (pdf).

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