In my lawsuit, am I allowed to serve the legal papers myself, or do I need to have an attorney (or some other service) serve the papers for me?
Under New York's Civil Practice Law and Rules, you are not allowed to serve the papers yourself. The papers must be served by someone that is not a party to the case, and that is at least 18 years old. There are other important technical aspects about how papers must be served, and if these rules are not strictly obeyed, the Court will disregard those papers. Therefore, if you need legal papers served in a litigation context, such as with respect to commercial matters, small business litigation or even personal injury lawsuits, I strongly suggest that you consult with an attorney about how to make sure this is done properly.