Texas State Representative Jeff Leach is proposing a bill that would allow sheriffs and other legal entities the right to serve legal papers over Facebook and other social media accounts. So if House Bill 1989 becomes a law, a comment on your blog, a Facebook message or a Tweet could count as legal notice when you’re facing civil issues.
Serving notice through social media will be legally acceptable so long as the defendant being served has and regularly checks social media accounts. New York already allows the service of process via Facebook, and problems have arisen as a result.
Some of the issues arise with serving paperwork via social media when making assumptions that someone will see all messages…when in reality many of these messages from social media are easily missed–especially when the messages are from people other than your friends and followers. On the other end, the issue with serving papers via social media is that friends may see the updates as well.
Time will tell whether House Bill 1989 will pass, but it’s interesting to see how the legal process in Texas evolves along with technology.
Source: The Daily Dot, “Texas Law Would Allow Legal Documents to be Served on Facebook,” Jennifer Abel, March 11, 2013