This section states authorized means of service by the Service on parties and on attorneys and other interested persons of notices, decisions, and other papers (except warrants and subpoenas) in administrative proceedings before Service officers as provided in this chapter.
(a) Types of service -
(1) Routine service.
(i) Routine service consists of mailing the notice by ordinary mail addressed to the affected party and his or her attorney or representative of record at his or her last known address, or
(ii) If so requested by a party, advising the party of such notice by electronic mail and posting the decision to the party's USCIS account.
(2) Personal service. Personal service, which shall be performed by a Government employee, consists of any of the following, without priority or preference:
(i) Delivery of a copy personally;
(ii) Delivery of a copy at a person's dwelling house or usual place of abode by leaving it with some person of suitable age and discretion;
(iii) Delivery of a copy at the office of an attorney or other person, including a corporation, by leaving it with a person in charge;
(iv) Mailing a copy by certified or registered mail, return receipt requested, addressed to a person at his last known address; or
(v) If so requested by a party, advising the party by electronic mail and posting the decision to the party's USCIS account.
(3) Personal service involving notices of intention to fine. In addition to any of the methods of personal service listed in paragraph (a)(2) of this section, personal service of Form I-79, Notice of Intention to Fine, may also consist of delivery of the Form I-79 by a commercial delivery service at the carrier's address on file with the National Fines Office, the address listed on the Form I-849, Record for Notice of Intent to Fine, or to the office of the attorney or agent representing the carrier, provided that such a commercial delivery service requires the addressee or other responsible party accepting the package to sign for the package upon receipt.
(b) Effect of service by mail. Whenever a person has the right or is required to do some act within a prescribed period after the service of a notice upon him and the notice is served by mail, 3 days shall be added to the prescribed period. Service by mail is complete upon mailing.
(c) When personal service required -
(1) Generally. In any proceeding which is initiated by the Service, with proposed adverse effect, service of the initiating notice and of notice of any decision by a Service officer shall be accomplished by personal service, except as provided in section 239 of the Act.
(2) Persons confined, minors, and incompetents -
(i) Persons confined. If a person is confined in a penal or mental institution or hospital and is competent to understand the nature of the proceedings initiated against him, service shall be made both upon him and upon the person in charge of the institution or the hospital. If the confined person is not competent to understand, service shall be made only on the person in charge of the institution or hospital in which he is confined, such service being deemed service on the confined person.
(ii) Incompetents and minors. In case of mental incompetency, whether or not confined in an institution, and in the case of a minor under 14 years of age, service shall be made upon the person with whom the incompetent or the minor resides; whenever possible, service shall also be made on the near relative, guardian, committee, or friend.
(d) When personal service not required. Service of other types of papers in proceedings described in paragraph (c) of this section, and service of any type of papers in any other proceedings, may be accomplished either by routine service or by personal service.