Transcribed By + John P. Silvaggio

SERVICE OF SUBPOENAS

A. INTRODUCTION

    A subpoena is an order for a person to appear and give testimony at a trial, hearing or deposition. It may be issued by a clerk of the court, a notary public or other authorized officer. D.C.R. 45 (a) & Dist. R. Crim. P. 17 (a). A subpoena may also command the addressee to produce books, documents, records or other tangible things. D.C.R. 45 (b) & Dist. R. Crim. P. 17 (c). (Historically, this has been known as a subpoena duces tecum).

B. SERVICE IN CIVIL CASES

    While a subpoena may be served by any disinterested party, a constable will often be called upon to serve them. D.C.R. 45 (c) states as follows:
    (c) Service. A subpoena may be served by the sheriff, by his deputies, by a constable, or by any other person who is not a party and is not less than (18) years of age. Service of a subpoena upon a person named therein shall be made by delivering a copy thereof to such person and by tendering to him the fees for one (1) dayĆ­s attendance and the mileage allowed by law. When the subpoena is issued on behalf of the state or an officer or agency thereof, fees and mileage need not be tendered. A subpoena may be served at any place within the state.

C. SERVICE IN CRIMINAL CASES

    (d) Service. A subpoena may be served by the sheriff, by his deputies, by a constable, or by any other person who is not a party and is not less than eighteen (18) years of age. Service of a subpoena shall be made by delivering a copy thereof to the person named and by tendering to him the fee for one (1) day's attendance and the mileage allowed by law. When the subpoena is issued on behalf of the state or an officer or agency thereof, fees and mileage need not be tendered.
    (e) Place of Service. (1) In Rhode Island. A subpoena requiring the attendance of a witness at a hearing or trial may be served at any place within the State of Rhode Island.