the actor Olivia Wilde She was discussing an upcoming movie on stage this week when she received a mysterious envelope, passed through the stage by someone in the front row.
Contents, according to diverse Reports, were custody papers from her ex-fiancé, Jason Sudeikis, with whom she had two children. Wilde was reportedly not angered after opening papers marked “personal and confidential”, but the incident raised questions. How did the person who served the newspapers get to the event at CinemaCon, a star-studded cinema gathering in Las Vegas? And why did the person choose such a public moment to hand the documents to Wilde?
Sudeikis, star of Ted Lasso on Apple TV +, didn’t know newspapers would be presented this way, Deadline representative said.
“Mr Sudeikis has no prior knowledge of when or where the envelope could have been delivered as this would only be for the process service company involved and would not condone inappropriate submission,” the spokesperson said.
But “this isn’t the first time something like this has happened,” says Ken Hastings, president of Hastings Legal Services in Temecula, California.
In fact, there is precedent for such public incidents, which were happily tracked down by celebrity gossip outlet TMZ. In 2013, for example, a member of the audience Apparently served legal papers For musician Ciara during her performance. A few years later, Tyga was hosting a sneaker launch party when someone approached him to sign him some boxes – then I handed him some papers And put up for a picture. Britney Spears obtained documents while leaving a medical facility, according to a video clip on the site. And last year, Looks like Dr. Dre has received the divorce papers As soon as he attended his grandmother’s funeral.
David Glass, another California attorney, said: People About serving baseball player Steve Garvey a few decades ago. “He was in hiding, he was always inside. And we figured he was going to speak at this seminar. And so my boss at the time asked our process server to buy a ticket, he went to the event and the same thing they did here, he went up on stage and gave it to them. I wouldn’t agree him, but that’s what my boss did.”
Whether what happened to Wilde was appropriate will depend, in Hastings’ opinion, on whether presenting papers on stage is a last resort – for example, if the subject appears to be “dodging”.
Talking to NPR, a Las Vegas-area operation server took a similar view. “I haven’t come across any clients or been involved in a submission where that would be the first thing we do,” Bill Falkner said. He said these were the most public incidents he knew of.
Process service is the formal name for the procedure by which the recipient is given papers to start the legal process. In celebrity-rich states including California and New York, the rules are fairly broad.
Most adults can turn in papers, as long as they’re not parties to the case — so, in theory, you could get your best friend to do it. In California, papers can be served “at the party house, work, or anywhere on the street.” Does the recipient refuse to take the documents? Never fear: “They can be left on the ground in front of him or her. If he or she takes the papers and rips them or throws them away, the service is still valid,” According to the judicial authority of the state.
But you may prefer to hire a professional, known as a processing server. It removes some of the legal issues involved, Hastings says. The friend has to prove to the court that he has submitted the papers, while if the processing server does the job, it is up to the recipient to prove it you were not Serve, he says, although the rules governing the entire process vary from state to state.
Furthermore, process servers are experienced in tracking people. We do Skip the effects. We are watching. “We do many of the things that private investigators do,” Hastings says.
So is it the case in the movies, where people use all kinds of schemes to stalk people? “The movies go wrong where, you know, we wear a different costume to try to do things,” Hastings says.
But going too far is not unusual—for example, early in his career, Hastings used a parking garage “to monitor an apartment in downtown Los Angeles, to make sure the subject we were looking for was in the apartment. So we got our eye level up with this unit,” then we had to find a way to get into the building, he says.
Once you reach the goal, Hastings says, “you have to identify the person and the general nature of the documents and get close to that person.” This means that—at least in California, the home of Hollywood—you might not hear the familiar refrain from movies: “You’ve been served.”